The Dissolution of Municipal Councils due to Organized Crime Infiltration
: The paper proposal is focused on the evolution of a specific legal instrument, which consists of the Central government’s power to “dissolve” municipal councils in the case of infiltrations by organized crime. In Italian administrative legislation, local councils may be dissolved for several reasons such as the ongoing violation of the law and the neglect of duty, but one of the most debated causes is the interference and the pressure that organized crime may exercise on the members of municipal councils. This specific administrative law instrument is defined in art. 143 T.U.E.L. and is part of a series of public anti-mafia policies. It was introduced in 1991 as an emergency law to cope with the risk of maladministration due to local authorities’ subjugation to criminal power (Mete, 2009). The aim of the dissolution of local councils is to preserve constitutional and fundamental values such as democracy and the rule of law, but it is a very severe legal tool as it affects a democratically elected community. This instrument is also closely related to the prevention of corruption in the public sector, as often the infiltrations by organized crime in municipalities are due to the corruption of public officials. The institution in charge of applying this legal tool is the Prefect, which has the power to enforce the orders of the central government and oversees local authorities. The procedure for the adoption of this instrument involves the major constitutional bodies such as the Parliament, the Ministry of Interior and the President of the Republic.
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