Lecco: “Keep your back covered”… Police protect journalist after e-mail threats

The journalist is Antonella Crippa of La Provincia di Lecco. The anonymous message reproduces the article published a year before about an assault on Beppe Grossi a collaborator on the same newspaper

The journalist, Antonella Crippa editor of the daily newspaper La Provincia di Lecco lives under intermittent police protection since the 26th March 2018 the day on which she reported to the public prosecutor of Lecco that she had received threats by e-mail.

“Life’s hard, Antonella. Keep alert and cover your back” this was the phrase sent to her on the 24th March in an e-mail message whose address contained the name and surname of a person unknown to the journalist. The message contained, moreover, a copy of the article published in La Provincia di Lecco in April 2017 describing the attack on the journalist Beppe Grossi, a collaborator with the newspaper.

Crippa replied instinctively to the message asking if it was a threat. On the 29th March the unknown sender replied that is was “a warning”.

“I still ask myself who it could be. It is difficult to identify him because he has taken several precautions. I continue to work as before. But certainly my private life has changed. Now I have to accept some restrictions and my first thought is for my daughter to whom I am very close.”

The journalist has received support from the committee of the editorial offices of the newspaper for which she works, from the national and regional branches of the journalists’ union, from Assostampa Lombarda and from FNSI. On the 3rd April the union organised in Lecco a demonstration of support meeting both Crippa and her colleague Grossi who, a year before on the 17th April 2017 was physically assaulted by a businessman following the publication of an article.

The businessman did not appreciate his description of the protest by environmentalists against the construction of a large farm building in Valsassina (Lecco). The businessman after having insulted and beaten Grossi had thrust into the journalist’s pocket a 50 euro note as a gesture to imply that Grossi had been “bought” to write the articles.

The incident had been reported by the journalist to the police and La Provincia di Lecco expressed solidarity with him and full legal support for any subsequent legal action.

RDM (wt)

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