At least six people have been put in prison while other six have been given house arrest for criminal association aimed at money laundering with Cosa Nostra. They were also charged for involving in an operation tagged “Golden Wood” which involves self-laundering, invoicing for non-existent operations, as well as crimes of fictitious registration of goods, counterfeiting of identity documents and replacement of person. The members of the gang were accused of aiding the mafia gang of Corso Dei Mille in Palermo. The gang aimed at laundering the proceeds of criminal affairs of the Palermo family headed by Pietro Tagliavia, a man sentenced with an irrevocable sentence for the crime of mafia association, who happened to be the son of a former top official of the mandate of the Brancaccio, Francesco Tagliavia who was also sentenced to life imprisonment for the massacre of via d’Amelio in Palermo and that of via dei Georgofili in Florence.
Investigations ascertained that the suspects made themselves available to Pietro Tagliavia while in detention in the district house of Prato to the extent that Pietro was provided with the phone for him to keep in touch with his associates in Sicily, the origin of part of the money laundered. During the investigations, money movements, evidently ‘cleaned up’, were also detected in favour of the Palermo chief-gang. Money laundering also involved the proceeds from the crimes of issue and use of invoices for non-existent operations, committed both in the context of relations between the companies managed by the organization and in favor of companies unrelated to it; the latter paid – by bank transfer – the amount of the falsely invoiced amounts, which then returned to their availability, in cash, reduced by 10% by way of commission. By virtue of these operations, which the suspects themselves called, in the intercepted conversations, ‘ghosts’ the beneficiary companies outside the organization.