Rocchi acquitted on appeal

Everyone acquitted except for Antonio Giraudo, who was sentenced to one year and eight months in jail. This was the verdict of the Court of Appeal read out today in Naples in the match-fixing trial. The former Juventus official was found guilty only of the charge of conspiracy, while he was acquitted of the charge of being the "instigator" made by the prosecution. Giraudo was also found guilty of sporting fraud in relation to the Juventus-Udinese match which finished 2-1. He was acquitted however in relation to the Udinese-Brescia and Roma-Juventus matches, for which he had been sentenced to three years in jail by the court of first instance.
All the other defendants – referees Tiziano Pieri and Paolo Dondarini, and the president of the referees' association during the match-fixing season 2004-2005, Tullio Lanese – were able to celebrate after being acquitted. The acquittals announced by the court of first instance were also upheld, including that of the only referee still in action, Gianluca Rocchi. At the court of first instance the 11 defendants had been sentenced, under the simplified criminal procedure, by the judge Eduardo De Gregorio as follows: a three-year jail sentence for Antonio Giraudo, two years and four months for Tiziano Pieri and two years for Tullio Lanese. Paolo Dondarini had been given a two-year jail sentence for sporting fraud. Lanese, Pieri and Dondarini have now been acquitted. "This is what I hoped. Now I shall relax for a month and in January I will decide whether to take any action after everything that has happened". This was the immediate reaction of Tullio Lanese, the former president of the AIA (the referees' association in Italy), after his two-year jail sentence was overturned by the Court of Appeal in Naples. The former referee Marco Gabriele was also happy about the verdict: "The new charges brought against me at the Court of Appeal came as a surprise, but now I can relax. I am happy for Pieri and the others who were acquitted. Finally the truth has come out as regards this matter after the persecution of honest citizens".
The date of the appeal hearing of Luciano Moggi and the other defendants found guilty by the court of first instance was also announced for 24 May 2013. Moggi and Giraudo are banned from football for life.

Source: AP