Business crime and investigations in Italy: overview

A Q&A guide to business crime  in Italy.

The Q&A gives a high level overview of matters relating to corporate manslaughter, environmental and health and safety offences. This Q&A is part of the global guide to financial and business crime law. For a full list of jurisdictional Q&As visit

Davide Contini and Silva Annovazzi, Grimaldi Studio Legale

Corporate manslaughter

Regulatory provisions and authorities

1. What is the main legislation relevant to corporate manslaughter?

Regulatory provisions

The Italian law system does not specifically include the corporate manslaughter crime. The most comparable form of liability to the UK Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007 is the one provided in the Legislative Decree of 8 June 2001 No. 231 (Decree 231), which introduced criminal administrative liability for legal entities in Italy. The liability arises as a result of certain offences (which are listed in Decree 231) that are committed exclusively for the economic interest or the benefit of the company, by an individual acting in an executive position or by a person under the supervision of such an individual (Article 5, Decree 231). Such liability arises in addition to the personal liability of the individual who actually committed the offence. In some cases, liability arising from the commission of a crime in a company can be extended to the whole group of companies where the economic interest of the whole group can be proven. In a number of cases foreign companies have been held liable on the grounds that a foreign company does not need to have branch offices or any permanent establishment in Italy for Decree 231 to apply, as long as the entity is doing business in Italy.

The grounds for criminal administrative liability for legal entities are different from those of UK corporate manslaughter and do not necessary require the death of the victim. In addition, most crimes listed in Decree 231 are intentional, which means that they require direct intention and willingness of the offender. Negligence is not sufficient. An exception to the mens rea requirement concerns involuntary manslaughter and personal injury caused by the violation of workplace safety laws. Initially, the Italian legislator limited the application of Decree 231 to areas of fraud against the state, corruption and bribery. Subsequent legislation has extended the liability of legal entities to include other economic crimes such as money laundering, terrorism and crimes against the person, such as manslaughter committed in violation of safe working practices.

Regulatory authority

The Italian system does not specifically include any authorities that regulate the area of law covered by Decree 231 and its potential breaches. There is no single regulator or authority with comprehensive jurisdiction over companies. The Italian regulatory system is based on a number of independent authorities in connection with specific sectors (such as banking and finance) or based on the purpose of regulation (such as anti-trust, data protection, and so on).


2. What is the specific offence of corporate manslaughter?

The specific offence of corporate manslaughter is not provided for in Italian law (see Question 1).


3. What defences, safe harbours or exemptions are available and who can qualify?

Decree 231 provides an exemption from liability. Criminal liability can be avoided if the company proves to have adopted and effectively implemented a compliance programme designed to prevent the commission of crimes listed in Decree 231 (Article 6, Decree 231). In addition, Decree 231 establishes a reduction of the fine where, before the opening of the trial, the company has refunded the loss caused by its actions and diminished the damages caused by the offence (Article 12, Decree 231).

The adoption of a compliance programme under Decree 231 is not compulsory under Italian law.


4. Which authorities have the powers of prosecution, investigation and enforcement in cases of corporate manslaughter? What are the authorities' powers of prosecution, investigation and enforcement, and what are the consequences of non-compliance?

Prosecution authorities

In the Italian criminal system there is a clear-cut separation between pre-trial and trial proceedings, and between the body responsible for investigating and prosecuting a crime and the body responsible for judging the case. Investigations are carried out by the prosecutor and police, and the judge intervenes only at the request of the parties.

The public prosecutor must start a preliminary investigation when they are notified of a crime. The obligation to start criminal proceedings applies to corporate crimes, as well as any other crime. When the offender is a corporation, the public prosecutor enters the name of the suspected corporation in the criminal records register (Article 335, Criminal Procedure Code (CCP)).

Police. Generally, the police are the first authority to deal with an offence and to take the necessary steps to protect evidence and to gather any other clue that may be useful for the enforcement of criminal law. Once the police have received notice of the crime they must inform the prosecutor of the main facts, the evidence collected and the investigations carried out, without delay. The police act under the instructions provided by the prosecutor, but they keep a certain degree of autonomy. Police can autonomously summon and question witnesses, victims and suspects who are not in custody. Further, the police can search individuals and premises without a warrant when someone is found in the act of committing a crime (in flagranza), although the search and seizures must be authorised and validated by the prosecutor.

Guardia di Finanza. The Guardia di Finanza is a military corps under the authority of the Minister of Economy and Finance, with a role as police force. It is in charge of financial, economic, judiciary and public safety which covers tax evasion, financial crimes, smuggling, money laundering, international illegal drug trafficking, illegal immigration, customs and borders checks, copyright violations, anti-mafia operations, credit card fraud, cybercrime, counterfeiting, terrorist financing, maintaining public order, and safety, political and military defence of the Italian borders.

Public Prosecutor's Office. Public prosecutors are in charge of prosecuting corporate crimes. In particular, prosecution is exercised by the Public Prosecutor's Office (Article 50 and following, CCP), a body of professional magistrates with powers granted by the Italian Constitution.

Once the prosecutor has received notice of a crime, they become the person in charge of the investigation with the related duty to take all necessary steps to determine whether a crime has been committed and whether there is enough evidence to start a proceeding to prosecute the crime. The criminal proceedings can be started ex officio or after a complaint (querela/denuncia). During the investigation phase, the Public Prosecutor is constantly supported by the police. Therefore, if no sufficient evidence exists after the preliminary investigation, the prosecutor will request the judge to dismiss the case (archiviazione). If there is sufficient evidence, the prosecutor will formulate the charge and request the judge to go to trial.

Formally, the prosecutor must record every notification of a crime (notitia criminis) in a specific register, and then investigate that crime, ending the inquiry either with a formal decision to charge the accused or with a request for dismissal filed with the court. However, in reality, prosecutors often fail to register many notifications of crimes, and they do not take any investigative steps for many registered crimes. Instead, they wait for the maximum amount of time to elapse in which a preliminary investigation can take place, and then they file a dismissal request.

Courts. The court structure in Italy is as follows (Articles 5 to 6, CCP):

  • Tribunals (tribunale monocratico/collegiale).

  • Court of appeal (Corte di Appello).

  • Court of assizes (Corte di Assise).

  • Appellate court of Assise (Corte di Assise di Appello).

  • Supreme cassation court (Corte di Cassazione).

Proceedings in tribunals and courts of assizes (which deal with the most serious felonies) are first instance proceedings. Courts of appeal and appellate courts of assizes review respectively the decision of the tribunals and the courts of assizes. The highest court in Italy is the Supreme Cassation Court (Corte di Cassazione), which is competent to review decisions on points of law but cannot judge on merits.

Prosecution powers

The Italian prosecutors embody a peculiar combination of official duties and actual practices:

  • They are formally members of the judiciary independent of the political branches.

  • They are charged with impartial investigations of crime but are likely only to gather damning evidence.

  • They serve as a party in the presentation of evidence at trial but can act on behalf of the defendant after trial.

  • They are bound to impose the court's sentence.

Powers of interview

The prosecutor can personally summon and question witnesses, interrogate the suspect at the investigation stage or delegate these tasks to the police. The summons must contain an exposition of the facts of the crime for which the suspect is under investigation (Article 64, CCP).

In any case, before the interrogation begins, the suspect must be informed that:

  • Any statements made during the interview can be used against him in court.

  • They have the right not to answer the question, without affecting the course of investigations that will proceed anyway.

During the trial, the accused has the right to be called to the stand to be questioned, but can refuse to testify, or to answer some of the questions.

Powers of search/to compel disclosure

When the prosecutor has gathered enough information and evidence to make the case they must serve a notice to the defendant (avviso di conclusione indagini) (Article 415 bis, CCP), in which the defendant is informed of the accusation. The defendant has the right to examine all the evidence gathered up to that moment.

The prosecutor is not obliged to disclose to the judge all the information gathered, but only those facts which the prosecutor believes are relevant to obtain the issuance of the warrant.

Court orders or injunctions

The judge at the request of prosecutor can issue precautionary measures (Article 291 CCP). These measures can be adopted only if there is a serious likelihood that the suspect (at preliminary investigation stage) or the defendant (at pre-trial stage) has committed a crime and if it is necessary in order to prevent the suspect/defendant from fleeing, committing another crime, destroying evidence or falsifying evidence.

The prosecutor is entitled to arrest a person provisionally (fermo di indiziato di delitto) when there is sufficient evidence against that person and a reasonable risk of flight. The prosecutor must request that the judge validate the arrest and order detention of the suspect within 48 hours.

In corporate liability matters the judge can order the following (Article 9, Decree 231):

  • A suspension or revocation of licences, permits and authorisations.

  • A temporary ban from engaging in business.

  • Disqualification from contracting with the public administration.

  • Disqualification from advertising goods and services and disqualification from financing, subsidies and other contributions.

Disqualifications and bans can last from three months to two years.

Protections available

The defendant must have the adequate time to prepare a defence. When the prosecutor wants to interrogate a suspect, they must summon the person [## in writing].

If a suspect has not elected a lawyer, a prosecutor must appoint and inform a duty lawyer.

5. What is the right to bail and is it available pre- and post-charge? What are the penalties for corporate manslaughter?

Right to bail

There is no right to bail under Italian law (see Question 4).


All offences carry monetary sanctions (Decree 231).They are based on a quota system, where a quota can range from EUR258 to EUR1,549. The fine can consist of between 100 and 1000 quotas (Article 10, Decree 231). The highest fine amounts to EUR1,549 million. For corporate crimes, the fine is doubled.

In addition, in case of serious violations, Decree 231 provides for precautionary measures, such as the suspension or revocation of licences and concessions, the prohibition of agreements with public agencies, disqualification from conducting business, exclusion or revocation of loans and contributions, and bans on the advertisement of goods and services. As highlighted in Question 4, these punitive measures may also be imposed before the beginning of the judicial procedure in the form of temporary restraining orders (in via cautelare).

The conviction under the Decree 231 always carries a confiscation of profits or the equivalent deriving from the crime.

The court decision can be published in the media.


Health and safety offences

Regulatory provisions and authorities

6. What are the main regulatory provisions and legislation relevant to health and safety offences?

Regulatory provisions

Provisions regarding health and safety in the workplace are included in the:

  • Code on health and safety protection of employees in the workplace issued in the Legislative Decree 81 of 9 April 2008. It defines the beneficiaries of the safety requirements and the mechanisms of delegating responsibilities, and prescribes stringent rules for keeping records relating to the worker safety. It applies, save for a few exceptions, to any public and private sector, and to any kind of risks.

  • Criminal Code. Under Article 40 of the Criminal Code, not preventing an event, which one has a legal duty to prevent, is equivalent to causing it. For more information, see Question 7.

  • Civil Code. It contains two sections that are particularly relevant to the protection of health and safety:

    • under Article 2087, the entrepreneur must adopt measures for the operation of the enterprise which, according to the particularity of the work, experience and technique are necessary to protect the physical and moral integrity of employees;

    • under Article 2050, anyone performing a dangerous activity must take all types of precautions necessary to prevent harm to others.

  • Decree 231. Article 25 septies of Decree 231 provides liability for companies in case of involuntary manslaughter (Article 589, Criminal Code) and personal injury for negligence (Article 590, Criminal Code) which occurred in workplace as a consequence of a violation of health and safety regulations.

Regulatory authorities

The Italian system does not specifically include any authorities that regulate the area of health and safety law and its potential breaches.


7. What are the specific offences relating to health and safety?

Article 15 of the Code on health and safety protection of employees in the workplace () identifies the general measures which the employer must adopt to protect the health and safety of the employees (such as, for example, the identification of risks in the workplace, the reductions of such risks, the adoption of measures to check the employees' health, and so on).

However, the employer can delegate certain tasks to other individuals if the (Article 16, Code on health and safety protection of employees in the workplace):

  • Delegation is formalised in writing and has a set and clear date.

  • Delegated person must have technical and professional skills suitable to carry out the delegated activities properly.

  • Delegated person must be provided with any necessary organisational and financial powers to perform the delegated activities properly.

Delegating tasks never exempt the employer from their duty to supervise the performance of the delegated tasks and ensure proper compliance.

The employer's legal obligations are set out in Article 18 of Legislative Decree 81/08.

The employer may not delegate the following tasks (Article 17):

  • The assessment of the risks in the workplace and the subsequent adoption of the Risks Assessment Document (RAD). This means that the risks regarding health and safety of employees in the workplace must be properly assessed by the employer.

  • The designation of the person responsible for the Protective and Preventive Unit.

The employer is solely responsible for drawing up a risk assessment and appointing the head of risk prevention. As part of the responsibilities in the area of health and safety, the employer and managers working on their behalf must consult with safety representatives who represent the employees.

The following offences are listed in the Criminal Code:

  • Article 437: removal or wilful omission of precautions against accidents in the workplace.

  • Article 451: negligent omissions of precautions or protection against disasters or accidents in the workplace.

  • Article 589: involuntary manslaughter.

  • Article 590: personal injury through negligence.

For more information, see Question 6.


8. What defences, safe harbours or exemptions are available and who can qualify?

After conducting a health and safety risk assessment and identifying unacceptable risk situations, the employer must put safety measures in place (such as implementing a compliance programme) to offset the identified risks. The final goal is to lower the residual risk to a level that is considered acceptable.

To avoid liability, the employer must demonstrate that all the measures required by the law have been taken to protect employees at the workplace. In addition, the system provides for an extinction procedure (introduced by Legislative Decree 758/1994) in favour of the person who violates the health and safety regulations at the workplace. The mechanism is applicable only for misdemeanours and not for felonies.

Under the procedure an inspector (supervisory board acting as a judicial police) gives the offender specific instructions to eliminate criminal health and safety violations, setting a proper time for performance. If the offender fulfils the instructions in time, they will be liable to pay a monetary sanction to administrative authority, equivalent to one-quarter of the maximum fine established for the offence committed.

The criminal proceeding is suspended until the Public Prosecutor is informed of the result of the performance. The offence is annulled if the offender fulfils the instructions and pays the administrative monetary sanction within the deadline.

For more information, see Question 3.


9. Which authorities have the powers of prosecution, investigation and enforcement in cases of health and safety offences? What are the authorities powers of prosecution, investigation and enforcement, and what are the consequences of non-compliance?

Prosecution authorities

When violations relating to health and safety in the workplace (for example, lack of fire prevention safety signs) are detected, supervisory bodies (such as the fire brigade) issue instructions to remedy the violations found and also notify the authorities of the offence (see Question 8). If the business owner complies with the requirements within the specified time, the offence is either annulled or the fine reduced.

For more information on health and safety offences, see Question 4.

Prosecution powers

See Question 4.

Powers of interview

See Question 4.

Powers of search/to compel disclosure

See Question 4.

Court orders or injunctions

See Question 4.

Protections available

See Question 4

10. What is the right to bail and is it available pre- and post-charge? What are the penalties for health and safety offences?

Right to bail

There is no right to bail under Italian law. For more information, see Question 4.


The sanctions system established by the Code of Health and Safety is a complex and refined one as the violation of each specific obligation involves the application of a specific sanction.

Criminal sanctions such as imprisonment are provided in relation to the most serious violations. In general terms, sanctions are measured both on the seriousness of the violations and on the type of the employer's organisation.

The Code provides for:

  • Criminal sanctions (imprisonment and/or fine), in case of violations that entail criminal liability. They are regulated by the Criminal Code and can be imposed only by the Criminal Courts.

  • Administrative fines, in cases of violation that do not have a criminal nature. They are the majority and correspond with a payment of a certain amount of money. The administrative proceeding is regulated by Law No 689 of 1981.

For example, lack of assessment of risks and subsequent lack of adoption of the Risk Assessment Document, or lack of appointment of the person responsible for the Protective and Preventive Unit, are crimes punishable with imprisonment from four to eight months (which may be extended up to 18 months in certain cases) or a fine between EUR5,000 and EUR15,000. Further, irregular drafting of the Risk Assessment Document is a crime punishable with a fine between EUR3,000 and EUR9,000.

For more information, see Question 5.


Environmental offences

Regulatory provisions and authorities

11. What are the main regulatory provisions and authorities responsible for investigating environmental offences?

Regulatory provisions

Environmental offences include:

  • Environmental crimes punished by criminal sanctions.

  • Administrative environmental offences where non-compliance with environmental legal provisions is sanctioned by administrative penalties.

Environmental policy and regulations are mainly covered by the Environmental Code (Legislative Decree 152 issued on 3 April 2006). The Environmental Code represents a milestone in Italian environmental legislation; however, it does not contain all provisions on environmental crimes. Some offences in relevant environmental sectors (for example, those on protection of flora and fauna) are set out in other statutes as well as the Criminal Code and the Decree 231.

In addition, under the Legislative Decree 121 of 7 July 2011 (implementing Directive 2008/99/EC on the protection of the environment through criminal law (Environmental Crime Directive)and Directive 2009/123/EC amending Directive 2005/35/EC on ship-source pollution and on the introduction of penalties, including criminal penalties, for pollution offences) the Criminal Code, covers specific criminal offenses of environmental pollution.

Finally, Decree 231 provides liability for companies which commit environmental crimes in the interest or for the benefit of the company.

Regulatory authority

The Italian system does not specifically include any authorities that regulate the area of environmental law and its potential breaches.

For administrative environmental offences, generally concerning less serious offences, the competent authority is the administrative one.

For more information, see Question 14.


12. What are the specific offences relating to the environment?

In the Italian law environmental offences are separately considered depending on whether they affect air, soil or water or other elements of the environment.

In particular, the substantive environmental offences under Italian regulations are as follows:

  • Air pollution: the air emissions regime is set out in Part V of the Environmental Code. It imposes liability on those who install or operate a facility in the absence of a permit or continue operating a facility with an expired, suspended or revoked permit or after the order of closure of the facility. The same penalty applies to a person who carries out substantial modification to a facility in the absence of the required permit.

  • Waste: the waste sanctioning regime is set out in Part IV of the Environmental Code. It imposes liability on whoever carries out an activity of collection, transport, recovery, disposal, trade and brokerage of waste without the permit, registration or communication provided for by the specific articles of the Code.

  • Soil pollution (Article 257, Environmental Code): imposes liability on whoever causes the pollution of soil, subsoil, surface water or groundwater exceeding the risk concentration thresholds, if they do not perform the site remediation in accordance with the project approved by the competent authority under the procedure set out in Article 242 of the Environmental Code.

  • Protected species (Article 727-bis, Criminal Code): imposes liability on whoever kills, captures or possesses specimens of protected wild fauna, except for cases where the conduct concerns a negligible quantity of specimens and has a negligible impact on the conservation status of the species".

  • Water pollution: Article 137 of the Environmental Code provides for several offences concerning water pollution, for example:

    • unauthorised discharge of industrial wastewater or discharge with a suspended or revoked authorisation;

    • discharge of wastewater exceeding the tabled thresholds limits (indicated in the tables in Annex 5 to part III of the Code);

    • failure to comply with the requirements contained in authorisations or regulations or orders of the competent authorities or with prohibitions contained in other provisions.

In addition, the main offences introduced by the Law 68/2015 include: 

  • Environmental pollution (452bis, Criminal Code), which is defined as the impairment or significant and measurable deterioration of the previous condition of:

    • water or air, or extended or significant amounts of the soil or subsoil;

    • an ecosystem, biodiversity, flora or fauna.

  • Environmental disaster (452 quarter, Criminal Code), which is defined as:

    • an irreversible alteration to the equilibrium of an ecosystem;

    • an alteration to the equilibrium of an ecosystem whose elimination is particularly costly and achievable only with exceptional measures; or

    • the offence of injury to public safety determined with reference to the extent of the compromise to the environment or its harmful effects, and the number of persons injured and exposed to the danger.

  • Obstructed control (425 septies, Criminal Code), which includes denying or hindering access to places, or artificially changing the condition of premises, to thwart or circumvent the supervision and control of environmental and occupational health and safety, or to affect outcomes.


13. What defences, safe harbours or exemptions are available and who can qualify?

Law 68/2015 extends the principle of active repentance to environmental crimes (by introducing Article 452 decies in the Criminal Code). This implies that whoever works to prevent the illegal activity from resulting in further consequences or provides for the safety, decontamination and, where possible, restoration of the condition of affected places before the offence occurred can benefit from a reduction of penalty. In addition, a reduction of penalty is provided for those who collaborate with the relevant authority in finding the offenders. To enjoy this benefit, the remediation activities must:

  • Be concrete.

  • Take place before the declaration of the opening of the trial in the first instance.

Section 9, Article 1 of Law 68/2015 (provides in the Environmental Code for an extinction procedure which is not applicable to proceedings already under way.

This procedure is available if the following requirements are fulfilled:

  • The crime committed is a misdemeanor and the violation has not caused any harm or danger to the environmental, urban or landscape conservation resources.

  • The party follows the instructions given by the surveillance authority and aims to remove the offence in a period not exceeding the time that is necessary to do so.

  • The responsible party pays the fine once it has carried out the instructions given by the surveillance authority in the prescribed time.

In a case of delay in performing the instructions of the authority or in a case of different performance from the prescribed one, the liable party can benefit from a reduction of penalty if it demonstrates that the harmful consequences of the violation have been removed. This procedure is similar to the one provided for health and safety violations at the workplace (see Question 8).


14. Which authorities have the powers of prosecution, investigation and enforcement in cases of environmental offences? What are the authorities powers of prosecution, investigation and enforcement, and what are the consequences of non-compliance?

Prosecution authorities

The fundamental principles of environmental offences are provided for by Law No. 689 of 24 November 1981, which concerns administrative offences in general. Administrative sanctions are imposed by administrative authorities, at the end of an administrative proceeding, through an injunction order (ordinanza di ingiunzione).

The administrative office in charge is the one located in the area where the infringement has been committed (paragraph 5, Article 17, Law No. 689). However, specific rules are provided for by the Environmental Code. For example, Article 135 prescribes that the administrative financial sanctions are imposed in an injunction order by the region or the autonomous province where the offence was committed.

In addition:

  • Law No 349 of 8 July 1986 established the Ministry of the Environment and Protection of the Territory and the Sea (Ministero dell' ambiente e della tutela del territorio e del mare). This is the competent authority for the implementation of environmental policy.

  • Law Decree No 496 of 4 December 1993 (as converted into Law No. 61 of 21 January 1994) established the Environmental Protection Agency (Agenzia Nazionale per la protezione dell' ambiente) (ANPA), which merged with other institutions to become the Institute for Environmental Protection and Research (Istituto Superiore per la Protezione e la Ricerca Ambientale) (ISPRA). The task of ISPRA, which operates under the guidance of the Ministry of the Environment and Protection of the Territory and the Sea, is to gather data, supervise compliance and provide technical support in setting environmental standards.

Other authorities relevant to the enforcement of environmental offences include:

  • Financial Guard (Guardia di Finanza), which carries out activities related to financial matters in the field of environmental protection. It is a corps included on the list of public bodies that can collaborate with the Ministry of the Environment and Protection of the Territory and the sea to identify offenders and enforce environmental law (Article 312, Environmental Code).

  • The Forestry Corps (Corpo Forestale) deals with prevention of environmental offences in relation to water or soil, in the waste sector and in relation to landscape safeguarding (especially in areas of agro-forestry). It is a corps in charge of the safeguard of forests as well as the biodiversity of flora and fauna. It constantly monitors national and international protected natural areas and it is involved in agriculture and food security matters.

  • Captain of Ports Department (Capitanerie di Porto) is in charge of protecting the marine and coastal ecosystem. It has the duty of surveilling the marine reserves and protected areas, and controlling the cross-border trafficking of waste by sea.

The authorities listed above verify the companies' compliance with environmental instructions. In certain cases they can apply specific disqualification measures.

Prosecution powers

See Questions 4 and 14.

Powers of interview

See Questions 4 and 14.

Powers of search/to compel disclosure

See Questions 4 and 14.

Court orders or injunctions

See Questions 4 and 14.

Protections available

See Question 4.

15. What is the right to bail and is it available pre- and post-charge? What are the penalties for environment offences?

Right to bail

There is no right to bail under Italian law (see Question 4).


In the case of a conviction for a crime against environmental protection, the judge will order the confiscation of the assets constituting products or profits of the crime, or which aided in its commission (or their equivalents).

Further, the judge will order the recovery and, where possible, the restoration of the condition of the premises, which must be carried out by the offender or, in the event of the offender's insolvency, the entity required to pay financial penalties of the offender.

Further, the offender will be banned from contracting with the public administration.

Significant financial sanctions incur for the commission of the following offences against the environment (Decree 231):

  • Environmental disaster (up to 800 quotas). For more information on quotas, see Question 5.

  • Aggravated association with criminals (up to 1000 quotas), trafficking and abandonment of highly radioactive materials (up to 600 quotas).

  • Killing, destruction, catching, and possession of specimens of protected wild animals and vegetable species (up to 250 quotas).

  • Destruction or deterioration of habitats within a protected site (up to 250 quotas).

In the case of conviction for environmental pollution or environmental disaster, the following sanctions also apply:

  • Prohibition of performance of the activity.

  • Suspension or revocation of authorisations, licences and concessions.

  • Prohibition on contracting with the public administration.

  • Exclusion from benefits, loans, grants or subsidies, and possible revocation of those already granted.

  • Prohibition on advertising goods and services.

For more information, see Question 5.


The regulatory authorities

The Italian system does not specifically include any authorities that regulate the area of environmental law and its potential breaches.

Online resources

Rivista 231


Description. Official website. It is maintained by a committee of experts in the administrative and criminal liability of legal entities in Italy. It contains up-to-date information.

European Agency for Safety and Health at Work


Description. This is an official website maintained by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work. Information is up to date.

ILO Labour Inspection in Italy


Description. This is a document issued by the International Labour Office (ILO) in 2011 which provides an official translation on health and safety matters in Italy.

European Union Action to Fight Environmental Crime


Description. The website of a 40 month EU funded research project on environmental crime.

Report from the Italian Government to the European Commission on the application of Directive 2004/35/EC on environmental liability with regard to the prevention and remedying of environmental damage


Description. It is a web site maintained by the UE on environmental matters.

Contributor profiles

Davide Contini, Partner

Grimaldi Studio Legale

T + 39 02 30309330
F + 39 02 30309340

Professional qualifications. Italy, Lawyer, 1993; qualified to plead before the Italian Supreme Court (Corte di Cassazione), 2011

Areas of practice. Arbitration; litigation; banking; finance; insurance law

Languages. Italian, English

Publications. Co-author, Il Segreto bancario e fiduciario in Italia e all' estero, Egea, 2008.

Silva Annovazzi, Partner

Grimaldi Studio Legale

T + 39 02 30309330
F + 39 02 30309340

Professional qualifications. Italy, Lawyer, 2003

Areas of practice. White collar crimes and criminal defence; outsourcing; offshoring; privacy; data security; information management; technology transactions; anti-money laundering; business solutions and governance; civil and commercial law; banking; finance; insurance law; privacy law; corporate governance.

Non-professional qualifications. International Ph.D. in Law and Society, Renato Treves, 2009; LL.M., Boston University School of Law, 1999

Languages. Italian, English

Professional associations/memberships. Board Member and co-founder of Osservatorio dei Rischi Legali d'Impresa; Officer, ALMA, Associazione Italiana degli LL.M.; Member, Milan Bar, 2003


  • Responsible for the column "Compliance" in The Work Style Magazine,, 2015.

  • Author, Spa a capitale pubblico e applicabilità del D.Lgs. n. 231/2001, Avvocati24, 2011.

  • Author, La responsabilità dell'Internet Provider: spunti e riflessioni sui profili di rischio penale amministrativo ai sensi del d.lgs. 231/01, Rivista della responsabilità amministrativa delle società e degli enti, 2010.

  • Author, The Crime of Money Laundering from a Contextual Perspective: Certain Comparative Aspects Between the Implementation of Preventive Measures for the Legal Profession in Italy and England, Lambert Academic Publishing, 2010.

  • Author, Il ruolo del Codice Etico nell'ambito dei protocolli preventivi - Rivista della responsabilità amministrativa delle società e degli enti, 2009.

  • Co-author, "Il ruolo del Collegio Sindacale nell'ambito dei modelli organizzativi ex D.Lgs. 231/2001 ed i suoi rapporti con l'Organismo di Vigilanza e Controllo", on Rivista della responsabilità amministrativa delle società e degli enti, 2 and 3, (2007).

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