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Italy: Unearthed remains '90%' likely those of Sicilian 'Robin Hood'

last update: October 30, 17:12

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Palermo, 30 Oct. (AKI) - DNA tests showed a 90% likelihood that the skeleton exhumed from a Sicilian cemetery belongs to legendary bandit Salvatore Giuliano who died in 1950, Il Giornale di Sicilia reported on Tuesday, citing local judicial sources.

The DNA match between the skeleton and Giuliano's relations means that Sicilian prosecutors are now close to archiving the probe they opened in 2010 into the possibility that someone was murdered and passed off as Giuliano, according to the sources.

The body now almost certainly Giuliano's was entombed 60 years ago in a cemetery in Montelepre, near Palermo but was dug up in October 2010 as part of the investigation.

Mysteriously, according to members of his family and witnesses, Giuliano was at least 1.80 metres tall while the exhumed skeleton belongs to someone between 1.60-1.70 metres.

Some historians and coroners had claimed that Giuliano managed to escape to the United States, possibly with the help of the mafia, and that someone else was buried in his place, contradicting the official version that he was killed by a paramilitary police captain in the western Sicilian town of Castelvetrano on 5 July 1950.

Giuliano gained fame among his fellow Sicilians during World War II when he led a group of bandits in stealing money for food and weapons, and became known as a kind of Robin Hood figure for allegedly aiding the poor with the takings from his banditry. He also belonged to a separatist movement.

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