People in the Spotlight: Rosario Salvatore Aitala

The judge from Catania who will try Vladimir Putin for war crimes

Rosario Salvatore Aitala, 54 years old, a former police officer who chose the bench, is, together with Antoine Kesia-Mbe Mindua and Tomoko Akane, one of the judges of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, set up in 1998 by the Treaty of Rome, who will deal with the war crimes in Ukraine.


Judge Aitala was on the police force until 1992 and in 1997 he joined the judiciary. “Extremely competent, and of the utmost integrity: you could see that he would go a long way,” the veterans at the police headquarters have said about him. He worked mainly in Milan, Rome and Trapani. He now teaches International Law at the LUISS University in Rome, and is convinced, as he wrote in his latest book, that International Law is “a way to look at the world” and become “witnesses to crimes that cry for justice.”

Before serving on the Hague Tribunal, he was a crisis area advisor and worked in numerous foreign ministries against international organized crime in Albania, Afghanistan, the Balkans and Latin America.

The judge who will try Putin was also an international affairs advisor to the spokesman of the Italian Senate, Piero Grasso. Currently, in Italy he is a member of the commission on war crimes set up by the Italian Justice Minister, Marta Cartabia.