Families who are victims of femicide can seek compensation from the state

Interview with Annetta, the only lawyer who had Italy condemned by the ECHR for failing to avoid the murder of a one-year-old child and the attempted murder of his mother who had filed numerous complaints against his partner

The state has a duty to protect the victim and if it does not do so it risks paying a high bill. Massimiliano Annetta, the first and only lawyer who had Italy condemned by the ECHR for violation of the Human Rights Convention, that is for failing to avoid the murder of a one-year-old child and attempted murder, explains this to Adnkronos. of the mother who had filed numerous complaints against her partner. The ruling of the court of Strasbourg, an authentic leading case, points the finger in the direction of the judiciary which remained passive in the face of the risks that the woman ran, now compensated with 32 thousand euros. A verdict that, beyond the symbolic figure, poses a principle: the tragedy could have been avoided if the prosecutors, implementing all the measures required by law, had acted immediately.

A sentence that, in principle, is applicable to all women who have had the courage to denounce, but have been silenced by violence not stopped in time. “The State has the duty to prevent these crimes and, as an absolute priority, to protect the victim; an obligation that comes well before the traditional duties of investigators to search for the perpetrators of a crime already committed and bring them to justice. This obligation is imposed by the transposition of supranational rules: I am thinking of European Convention on Human Rights, but also, and above all, to the European Union directive number 29/2012, which the State has ratified for years, but which is still struggling to fully apply “, explains the lawyer.

The latest victim of femicide is Alessandra Matteuzzi, killed by her ex-partner Giovanni Padovani, reported a month ago for harassment. “I do not know in detail the case of Bologna, I can only say that, if the same conditions existed in this case as well, and, more generally, in all cases in which the victims have filed complaints that have not been heard, an appeal can be immediately filed. to the European Court of Human Rights to ask the State for a compensation as a result of the violation of the obligation to protect the victim “, Annetta reveals that if on the one hand she promotes the Red Code which provides for a” preferential lane “for certain crimes, on the other she remembers that the rules” as well as being written must also be implemented “.

One of the obligations imposed on the State by the European directive “is the training of operators: the European standard provides that the entire ‘chain’ of investigators and operators – from the country commissioner up to the public prosecutor and the judge – are adequately trained , and consequently made responsible, for the immediate activation of all the procedures for listening and protecting the victim. Norms, like ideas, walk on men’s legs, and if they are not strong they do not go far “. In front of the last femicide the only wish for the relatives of the victim is “to find justice. Then there is a wish that I address to all of us, after each episode of this one that must now be defined as a slaughter: that these deaths teach us something, even if we do not by now I hope more too much “, concludes the lawyer Massimiliano Annetta.