Published On: Wed, Apr 22nd, 2015

Knipselkrant Curaçao still calls Francesco Corallo ‘mafia boss’ despite lawsuit for libel and slander

gerard-spongWILLEMSTAD - The conviction and tenacity of the editors of the popular Dutch news site Knipselkrant Curaçao cannot be denied. The Dutch lawyer, Gerard Spong, on behalf of his client, Francesco Corallo filed a complaint for libel, slander and defamation against the editor of this news website.

The editors have repeatedly called Francesco Corallo mafia boss and mob friend. This week the editor called Francesco Corallo once again a mafia boss in an article entitled "Mafia boss Corallo wants to tackle Knipselkrant Curaçao”.

The editors of Knipselkrant Curaçao did not incidentally just come to the term 'mafia boss' regarding Francesco Corallo. According to the editor, they maintain an extensive dossier of the casino owner from Italy, who resides in Sint Maarten.

The State of the Netherlands was previously caught up in a lawsuit which was filed by Corallo. Francesco Corallo doesn’t think he’s from the 'mafia' and will not be called as such in official documents of the Dutch State.

Corallo does not have any known convictions, but, according to information from the Italian police and intelligence service, he’s engaged in international drug trafficking and money laundering. The complaint filed by Francesco Corallo stated that the State of the Netherlands did not verify the information from the Italian authorities and that he was not given an opportunity to rebut the incriminating information.

On Thursday, November 27th, 2014, the Criminal Investigation Team headed by the magistrate did a house search in the home of Francesco Corallo in St. Maarten. A search was also done at the Atlantis Casino.

The Public Prosecutor at the time confirmed that these searches were done at the request of the Italian authorities. This request was made in response to an ongoing investigation by the Guardia di Finanza in Rome. Three months earlier, Corallo appeared voluntarily at the Italian authorities.

Corallo was placed under house arrest from August 4 to October 14, 2014. Prosecutor Pellicano, interrogated the casino owner at that time about alleged fraud at the Banco Popolare di Milano.

The Public Prosecutor was investigating a loan of 142 million dollars from the Banco Popolare di Milano to B Plus Giocolegale. The latter company is an enterprise owned by Corallo.

According to lawyer Gerard Spong, on April 1 and 3, 2015 the editors of Knipselkrant Curaçao published an article in which “they undeniably committed the offenses of defamation (Article 261 Penal Code) and insult (Article 266 Penal Code).”

According to Spong, the editor called his client mob friend six times, mafia boss once and accused Corallo of bribery, extortion / blackmail, corruption, illegal gambling and drug trafficking.

Spong asked the chief public prosecutor in Rotterdam to proceed with a criminal prosecution.

Photo: Gerard Spong.

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