Vito Galatolo

Former mafioso

Vito Galatolo, a mafioso turned state informant, is part of a mafia clan loyal to the imprisoned but still powerful Cosa Nostra boss Toto Riina.

Galatolo was arrested in Palermo in 2014. While in prison he contacted Judge Antonino Di Matteo. He said he wanted to collaborate with the authorities because he couldn’t bear the thought of what might happen at any moment. He told Di Matteo that he’d organised the purchase of explosives (200kg of TNT) to be used for a car bomb in Palermo to kill the judge.

Di Matteo recalls his conversation with the mafioso: “He said ‘The plan to assassinate you is well under way. We’ve studied how to kill you in Palermo’. I just asked him one thing. ‘Why?’ The famous photograph of Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino was on the wall. I’ll never forget what he said. He pointed to the picture and said, ‘You see Dr Borsellino? What happened to him is happening to you. We were commissioned to do it’. He was referring to the murder of Dr Borsellino as something that was carried out on the orders of others.”

Galatolo said the order to kill the judge came from a senior mafia boss, and claims it was men from inside the state who authorised the murder of Borsellino and sanctioned the assassination of Di Matteo.

He says: “The letter said that if we assassinated Dr Di Matteo who was ‘going too far’, we didn’t have to worry about anything. This time we were well covered. This meant there was some kind of authority inside the state that had made this decision. We were convinced this was the secret service and the carabiniere police’.

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