March 3, 1931, was a happy day in the lives of Antonio and Andrina Soddu, two immigrant Italians from Sardenia, Italy. They were blessed with their second child and their first son. They named him Vinci after Leonardo Da-Vinci and at his baptism they chose the middle name Paul, after St. Paul.

Vinci Paul Soddu left his birthplace of Brooklyn, New York when he was ten years old to go to Hopewell, Virginia where a childhood friend of his father's had moved to years before and had acquired several pieces of real estate. We moved into a large apartment behind a large empty store. Next door was a ten-car garage, and all the aforementioned property was in dire need of my father's talent of carpentry and general handyman services. We opened a confectionery in the store and a carpentry and cabinet shop in the ten-car garage. Elementary school was only a half a block away. The school also afforded the entire neighborhood with an excellent baseball and football field and a gathering place for all the local children. Life was fun but after a few years it became boring after life in the big city. At sixteen I quit high school and I decided I wanted some excitement in my life, so Miami Beach, Florida here I come!

My first job was behind a lunch counter in a drug store on Collins Avenue. I was happy with the excitement of the beach and the people who were on vacation, but I yearned for a better paying job with a little more prestige so I applied for a job as assistant manager at the busiest drive-in restaurant on the 79th Street causeway that links Miami Beach to Miami.

After two years at Colonel Jim's Drive-in as the assistant manager I met my future wife, Marion Lee, who was from a small town in South Carolina. We eloped and went back to Hopewell where I worked at the trade my father had taught me, carpentry and general construction. We had begun a family; we had our first child, Angela, followed by Mario Vinci, my first and only son. Uncle Sam chose
this inopportune time to send me my greetings.

The year was 1955 and we were at war in Korea. I spent the next two years in Colorado Springs as a ski trooper in mountain-cold weather troops. I enjoyed everything about the Army except being away from my wife and children.
After my discharge on January 16, 1957 we moved to Baltimore, Maryland and I went to work for General Motors, Chevrolet Division, working on an assembly line. The Army taught me the value of an education and with the aid of the GI Bill I enrolled at the University of Baltimore. I worked full time for GM and I attended college full time for three and a half years. I never missed a day of work or school.

As a result of my education I was promoted to foreman with a considerable raise in pay. The GI Bill would only

The Vinci Paul Soddu Story: Naked Truth Equals Dubious Justice


pay for three and a half years of school so in early 1961 I left school and GM and my family and I returned to Florida. We now had five children and we bought a house in a fashionable new area called Copper City on the outskirts of Ft. Lauderdale. I then opened my own cabinet shop and construction company where I specialized in remodeling and home repair.

After eleven years of moderate success I was called to do a room addition in North Miami. It was there that I met Theresa Allen, wife of the victim in my case, Mark Allen. They had three children, Paul the oldest, Amy, and the youngest, Gail. Theresa and I became romantically involved and we began an affair that lasted over five years.

Mark and Theresa Allen were involved in the sale of marijuana and Quaaludes and they supplemented their income on a small scale by selling them. The curse that developed was Mark's addiction that had got so bad it made him into a monster. He was abusive to his wife and children. He was a gun nut and kept dozens of loaded guns in his home. He insisted Theresa carry a gun wherever she went. After I completed the room addition I continued to see Theresa for the next five years.

In May 1977 Mark Allen was shot and killed as he returned home from work at the Florida Power and Light Company at about eleven o'clock at night. Theresa admitted to the police that she had an affair with me for five years and I was called. I went to the Hollywood Police Department and answered every question truthfully that was asked of me. I was released and never heard from them again until fifteen and a half years later. I was in Hopewell, Virginia spending time with my dying mother. I had planned to stay with her until she passed away. I was arrested and taken back to Hollywood, Florida to stand trial.

Several months before Mark's death I had broke off my relationship with Theresa and divorced my wife of twenty years. I married another girl named Donna Gallo who had recently divorced her husband, Gino. Gino owned a cabinet shop four stores away from my business and while we were not close friends we were not enemies.

The year was 1992 and I had closed my business and taken all my equipment with me to Hopewell. Prior to my trial we asked to be allowed to post bond since the state's case was very flimsy at best. Judge Leroy Moe told us on Thursday to be in his chambers on Monday to post a bond for fifty thousand dollars and we agreed.

The next day, Friday, I was called to the Magistrate's Court and charged with Capital Sexual Battery on the daughter of Theresa. Her youngest was claiming I had sexually abused her before she turned twelve years old.

The state insisted on trying the murder case first and at a

pretrial hearing we learned that Benjamin Sosa, an inmate in my pod, had said that I had confessed both crimes to him. I also learned that I had been arrested because of a statement made to the prosecutor by an ex-employee named Juan Rodriguez, who claimed I had confessed both crimes to him while he was in my employ.

In a statement in my trial transcripts Prosecutor Tom Kearn referred to Juan as "not too bright." I concur wholeheartedly. His entire testimony was a fabrication, as was the testimony by Benjamin Sosa. Sosa testified in five high-profile murder cases in five different courtrooms using five different aliases. Two books were published bearing Sosa "confessions," "Until Proven Innocent" by Arthur J. Harris and "The Wrong Man." One of the books is about two brothers, Rodney and Dana Williamson; the other is about a friend of mine named Paul Hamwi.

I have proof of every appearance that Sosa made in court and I can prove that there existed in the Broward County Jail on the eight floor in 8-C4 a ground of professional paid informers. They were placed in close proximity to inmates in high profile cases and they "elicited" information that helped the state obtain tainted convictions. I have thirty-four exhibits to prove every allegation I have made beyond any and all doubt.

The state of Florida violated my 6th and 14th Amendment Rights and convicted me of first-degree murder based entirely on the testimony of two paid informants. I have statements taken by four informants, but only two were available at the time of my trial.

All I have ever asked of the state is an evidentiary hearing to give me the opportunity to prove every allegation I have made. The law states very clearly that if the state denies post conviction relief it must produce portions of the records that refute whatever I claim. The state has never done this nor have they ever given any opinions as to why they decided against me.

The A. A. G. for the state, Lynda L. Melear, has come very close to telling outright lies to answer her show cause orders from the federal courts. Magistrate Charlene Sorrentino from the Southern District in Miami has seen fit to believe her and recommend denial of my habeas corpus petition. The 11th Circuit Court in Atlanta upon my appeal to them, claims I never proved a violation of my constitutional rights and denied my appeal.

I have now placed my life in the hands of the only democratic and fair court in our great country. Dear God, let our lady of justice prevail for me in the Supreme Court of the United States.

Address Correspondence to:
Vinci P. Soddu 661088
Dade Correctional Institution G-1220L
19000 SW 377th Street
Florida City, FL 33034

Outside Contact:
Etna Traylor
(540) 733-7509