Italian Policy on Robbery
The number of robbery offences reported over the last 3 years (2011-2013) has increased, on average, by 7%.
Art. 628 (Robbery) of the Italian Criminal Code provides that Whoever, in order to procure a wrongful benefit for himself or others, takes possession of the movable property of another, by taking it away from the person who holds it, by means of violence against the person or threats, shall be punished by imprisonment for from three to ten years and by a fine of from 516 to 2,065 EUR.
Anyone who uses violence or threats immediately after the taking in order to assure himself or others of possession of the thing taken, or to ensure that he or others will not be caught, shall be subject to the same punishment.
The punishment shall be imprisonment for from four years and six months to twenty years, and a fine of from 1,032 to 3,098 EUR:
- if the violence or threats were committed with arms or by a disguised person, or by more persons than one acting together;
- if the violence consisted in putting someone in a state of incapacity to make decisions or to take actions;
- if the violence or threats were committed by a member of a Mafia-type criminal association (Art. 416-bis);
- if the fact was committed in the places referred to in Art. 624-bis [dwellings or any related outbuildings] and in such places as to hinder public or private defence;
- if the fact was committed on board public transport vehicles;
- if the fact was committed against a person who is about to use or has just used the services of bank institutions, post offices or ATMs;
- if the fact was committed against a person above the age of 65 years.
In order to tackle most serious predatory crimes, ad hoc working groups have been set up at local level. in particular, a working group is currently active in the southern Italian region of Puglia, which is composed of investigators from the SCO (National Police Central Operations Service) and local Squadre Mobili (CID units) supported by local police stations and, where necessary, by the Traffic Police. This group has also capitalised on the experience of previous working groups set up to counter an upsurge of security van robberies.
Project HOME 2013, a joint SCO-Squadre Mobili investigative initiative designed to curb the upsurge of violent burglaries at homes and the related offences of handling stolen goods and illegal weapon possession, was carried out in 2013. As a result, investigative activities were targeted at criminal groups regularly engaging in those crimes. Project HOME 2013, a purely operational initiative, has stimulated the launch of targeted investigations and facilitated the exchange of information among the various investigative units concerned by the specific crime phenomenon characterised by the involvement of specialised, highly mobile criminal groups.
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