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Mafia Bosses Offer $165,000 and an Apartment for Family of "Mistakenly" Killed Victim

A case of mistaken identity.

Leaders of the Neapolitan mafia have offered $165,000 in cash and real estate as a mea culpa to the family of a man they mistakenly killed more than a decade ago, Italian media reported.  Not only was Giulio Giaccio erroneously targeted, his murder was particularly vicious—foot soldiers of the Polverino family killed him with a gunshot to the head and dissolved his body in acid, leaving only his teeth behind, according to Vanity Fair Italia.  

The details trickled out over the years and during the start of the accused murderers' trial earlier this month. Read on to find out more about the story, including what happened the night Giaccio disappeared, how suspects were identified, and how Giaccio's family has responded to mob's offer of compensation. 

A Case of Mistaken Identity

Police Handout

In 2010, Giaccio, then 26, was out with friends when he was taken into custody by two mafiosi posing as uniformed policemen. Carlo Nappi and Salvatore Cammarota mistakenly believed Giaccio was having an affair with a mobster's sister. That night, the "police" addressed Giaccio as Salvatore; confused, he went with them to clear up the misunderstanding. His friends and family never saw him again.

In 2015, a member of the Polverino family alleged what happened to Giacco: Nappi and Cammarota killed Giaccio with a gunshot to the head and dissolved his body in a vat of acid. But the acid didn't degrade the victim's teeth, so Nappi and Cammarota smashed them with a hammer, Vanity Fair Italia reported. The men were finally arrested last December.

Attempt to Get Lighter Sentence

judge banging gavel
Shutterstock/ESB Professional

Before the start of their murder trial on Apr. 18, it emerged that Nappi and Cammarota offered Giaccio's mother and brothers 30,000 euros in cash and 120,000 euros in real estate (about $165,000 U.S. in total).  In the Italian judicial system, if the perpetrator of a crime offers compensation to a victim or their family, it can be considered as a mitigating factor when it comes to sentencing.

"That was the way get a lighter sentence than a life sentence as well as a possible request for a reduced trial," Corriere della Sera reported. The mobsters' lawyers said the amount was the maximum the pair could afford.

Relatives Decline Offer


However, Giacco's mother and brothers turned down the offer, saying they want justice to take its course. According to Vanity Fair Italia, their attorney Alexandre Motta released a statement to the court: "The clients understood and informed me of their decision not to accept this offer, since they rely exclusively on the determinations of the judicial authority, following the outcome of the criminal trial in question. For this reason, the formulated 'real' offer cannot be accepted." 

"No money will bring back the life of Giulio. After 23 years, the family believes in the justice system, in which they have confidence," said the lawyer, adding that the relatives want the defendants to receive "the most severe punishment."

"They don't even have a body to mourn," he said.

The Last Thing Victim Said


According to the UK Daily Star, Motta said the mobsters had good reason to make the offer. "Under Italian law, you can get a third off your sentence if you pay compensation for a crime," he said.  Giaccio was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

"Killers sent by the bosses showed up dressed as police officers and ordered the man into their car, but they had got Giaccio by mistake," said Motta. "The last thing he said was, 'Officer, you've made a mistake, I came from a good family,' before they shot him once in the head."

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"Darkest" Moment of Mobster's Career


"When the bloodstained body was driven to Cammarota, he pulled it out of the car and kicked and punched it, before they smashed Giaccio's teeth in case the acid they dissolved his body in didn't dissolve his teeth," said Motta.

The mobsters then left Giaccio's mutilated remains at a dump on the outskirts of Naples. According to the Sun, the informant who turned them in, a former Mafia hitman named Roberto Perrone, told police the murder had been "the darkest" moment of his criminal career.

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