Apology of fascism. This is the crime that the Turin Public Prosecutor’s Office complains to the city leader of Forza Nuova Luigi Cortese and to two other militants for a banner that appeared in the course of Unification of Italy in 2019 with the words “Vote fascist, vote Forza Nuova”. Among the suspects there are also Stefano Saija and Alessandro Balocco, now provincial secretary of Italexit with Paragone in Cuneo. Stefano Saija, a leading executive of Forza Nuova Torino at the time of the events, is also being investigated by the Rome Public Prosecutor’s Office for instigating a crime for a party statement published last Sunday.
In Turin, the investigation was coordinated by the prosecutor Enzo Bucarelli. The banner was unrolled by a group of far-right militants from the pedestrian overpass in Corso Unità d’Italia on May 22, in the midst of the electoral campaign for the European elections.
The initiative was published on Facebook, on the Forza Nuova Torino page, and shared by several militants. During the Digos investigation, the posts were acquired and the party’s city headquarters and some homes were searched.
To the investigators, Cortese had denied both being the author of the banner and having authorized the initiative.
The dossier is a fragment of a much wider investigation, carried out by Digos, on the circles of the Piedmontese extreme right. Under the investigators’ lens, in addition to Forza Nuova, the Rebel Firm and Legio Subalpina associations had ended; had dug into his contacts with the extremist formations of ‘Identity Generation’ and the Anglo-Saxons’ Combat18 “(” Adolf Hitler’s fighters “). Two waves of searches in rapid succession led to the recovery, in the homes of some militants, of a quantity of material: posters by Mussolini, flags of the Social Republic and the Decima Mas, books on Nazi Germany, pins with swastikas, plexiglass shields, clubs, toy guns, soft air rifles.
An activist was also arrested for possessing war ammunition. The bulk of the allegations, according to what has been leaked, have not been prosecuted. The magistrates have ordered the excerpt of a series of positions, a move that usually is a prelude to a request for dismissal. Having gadgets at home that refer to fascism and Nazism is not a crime. However, the case of the banner remains open. Cortese has always denied being the author and, above all, having authorized the initiative. In that period of 2019 it was in the middle of the electoral campaign for the European elections and one of the themes pursued by Forza Nuova was the fight against usury. The thesis is that someone, perhaps among the youngest, had written the words “vote fascist” for an excess of exuberance. In the circles there is a rumor that, at the time, even the national leader, Roberto Fiore, did not approve. The Digos lighthouse on the sympathizers of Nazi-Fascism has not gone out. Six complaints were filed last month for propaganda and incitement to crime. A small group of mavericks not members of parties or associations. On Facebook, or in chat, they wrote that migrants “should be shot and their country razed to the ground” because “they are not even suitable for making soap: you know, black does not clean”.