Monument to Cesare Terranova

Bronze and stone work of Tommaso Geraci – 1993

Cesare Terranova (Palermo, 15th August 1921 – Palermo, 25th September 1979) was an Italian magistrate, member of Parliament and Head of the Education of the Court of Palermo. In 1969 he was prosecutor at the trial held in Bari against the Corleone’s clan where, however, almost all the accused were acquitted. He was Public Prosecutor in Marsala until 1973, where he worked on the case of the “monster” Michele Vinci. He distinguished himself for having tried and sentenced to life imprisonment the Primula Rossa of Corleone, Luciano Liggio (who had already been acquitted at the process of Bari) in 1974. From 1972 to 1979 Terranova was deputy of the Parliament for the Independent Lift under the PCI (Italian Communist Party) list. During the 4th Legislature he was member of Antimafia Commission and he with other members of PCI prepared the famous minority report which pointed to connections between Mafia and politician, in particular regarding members of the Christian Democrat Party (DC, Democrazia Cristiana): The report criticized the conclusions of the majority report (drafted by the demochristian deputy Luigi Carraro) that, on the contrary, denied this connections. The minority report heavily accused the demochristians Giovanni Gioia, Vito Ciancimino, Salvo Lima and other politicians of having relationship with Mafia. After the parliamentary experience, Terranova returned to the Magistrature and was appointed Councilor at the Court of Appeal of Palermo. On 25th September 1979, at around 8:30 am, a Fiat 131 escort arrived under the house of the judge in Palermo to take him to work. Cesare Terranova drove the car while beside him sat the Marshal of Public Safety Lenin Mancuso, the only man of his escort who followed him for twenty years as a guardian angel. The car turned into a side road and found it unexpectedly closed by a barrier of work in progress. The judge Terranova did not have enough time to sense the danger. In that instant from the corner came out some killers who repeatedly shot with a Winchester rifle and other pistols against the Fiat 131. Cesare Terranova instinctively shifted into reverse gear in a desperate attempt to escape the lead storm, while the marshal Mancuso, with an extreme attempt of reaction, brandished his Beretta and tried to shoot the killers, but both of them were reached by bullets in different parts of their body. Killers dealt the death blow to Terranova with a point-blank shot to the nape. His faithful bodyguard, Lenin Mancuso, died after a few hours of agony in hospital.