Publisher sent for trial over bankruptcy of daily L’Unità

Questo articolo è disponibile anche in: Italian

The first hearing will be in February 2023 – The newspaper ceased publication in 2017

OSSIGENO 12th September 2022 – The crisis of the publishing company of the newspaper l’Unità, which entered into voluntary arrangement with its creditors in 2014, has had sensational developments in recent weeks. On 27th July 2022 the Court of Rome declared the bankruptcy. Then, recently the General Prosecutor of Rome ended the investigations into those responsible for the insolvency of the company and indicted the entrepreneur Renato Soru, former President of the Sardinia Region and others, including Antonio Mazzeo, current president of the Regional Council of Tuscany for bankruptcy through inattention and self-indulgence. However the entrepreneur Maurizio Mian, who received the majority package of l’Unità in 2012, will not be tried due to a statute of limitations.
The newspaper ceased publication in 2017. In the following years it published only one issue annually to avoid the loss of the title.

In recent years, numerous journalists employed by L’Unita who previously had the publisher’s indemnity, have had to face at their own expense libel trials resulting from the publication of articles in L’Unita. The Free Legal Aid Office of Ossigeno per l’Informazione has borne the legal costs of some of these proceedings, deeming the accusations against these journalists to be spurious and unfounded and highlighting the absurdity of the legislation that eliminates the co-responsibility of a publisher disappear in these trials in the event of a transfer of ownership or bankruptcy. An issue raised several times in the political arena but still unresolved.

In the bankruptcy trial set for February 13th 2023, Renato Soru is defended by lawyer Fabio Pili. At the time, Soru was a member of the European Parliament for the Democratic Party. He appears in the proceedings for his role as shareholder of the publishing company of l’Unità from 2008 to 2015.

According to the charges of the Public Prosecutor’s Office, which entrusted the investigation to the Guardia di Finanza, the former President of the Sardinia Region allegedly transferred shares, for a value of about three million euro, between the two companies Nie, (Nuova iniziativa editorial) and Nsef, (Nuova società  editrice finanziaria) who “managed” the historic newspaper. For the Rome prosecutors, these were operations “without a valid economic reason” implemented, again as outlined in the conclusions of the investigations, to create fictitious capital increases and generate credit.

According to the representatives of the prosecution, the Sardinian entrepreneur, despite having no decision-making role, would be, as the “reference shareholder of Nie Spa in liquidation, the instigator-determinator” of the conduct of the directors, accused of having neglected and dissipated “in all or part of the assets of the company causing its failure “.”As on other occasions, also in this case I will defend myself in the trial,” said Soru saying he was “saddened” but certain that his innocence will be recognized. (source Ansa) ASP wt

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