Volume 44, Issue 3 (May 1999)
The Contribution of Forensic Geology and Other Trace Evidence Analysis to the Investigation of the Killing of Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro
In May 1978 the body of the kidnapped Italian Prime Minister, murdered by the Red Brigades, was found in a car parked in the center of Rome. This paper discusses the findings from the investigations conducted on the evidence found on Mr. Moro's clothes, shoes (beach sand, bitumen, vegetals and polyester fragments), and on the car. To get a comprehensive picture of the characteristics of the various pieces of evidence, use was made of a multiple-technique approach. The sand was identified as coming from the seashore close to Rome. A tract of shore with a limited number of roads leading to the beach was defined as compatible with the textural and compositional characteristics of the sand. The study of the vegetal fragmenta suggested that they had been picked up in a period of time close to the killing. Thermosetting polyester, of the type used in boat manufacturing was found under the fenders, in the tires and inside the car, as well as under Mr. Moro's shoes, supporting proximity of a beach. Pollen analysis showed that adhesion of volcanic soil to the car fenders antedated adhesion of the sand.