Tag Archives: italian mafia news

Italian police busted a mafia group trying to smuggle over a billion dollars’ worth of cocaine into Europe

Italian anti-mafia police said they busted an international drug ring and arrested 54 people with ties to notorious mafia group ‘Ndrangheta attempting to smuggle cocaine with a street value of $1.7 billion into Europe.

While the ‘Ndrangheta is based in the southern Calabria region, the 54 people arrested were detained in different parts of Italy, the country’s authorities said, according to Reuters.

The group was allegedly conspiring to import about 8 metric tons, or 17,637 pounds, of cocaine from Colombia into Europe via seaports and airports in Calabria, which is at the southern tip of the Italian mainland.

Read Full Article – http://www.businessinsider.com/italy-cocaine-bust-drug-trafficking-ndrangheta-mafia-2017-1

Priest who was banned from giving mafia boss mass seeks meeting with Pope Francis

The mass was supposed to remember Rocco Sollecito, a mobster killed in Canada in May.


A priest wants to meet Pope Francis after he was banned from celebrating mass in memory of a mafia boss in the town of Grumo Appula, in the southern Italian region of Apulia.

Father Michele delle Foglie had invited the local congregation to church on Tuesday 27 December, to a service remembering mafia boss Rocco Sollecito, who was killed in Canada in May. Sollecito’s family had approached the local parish priest with the request for a memorial mass service, as is the religious custom in Italy.

Firstly, the police ordered the service to be moved to the evening and be treated as a private function, to prevent a breach of public order. The local archbishop subsequently ordered the service to be cancelled altogether, calling it a “serious scandal”.

The priest was reportedly frustrated with the intervention in what he deemed an interference with his authority as spiritual leader of the community. “I am thinking of appealing to Pope Francis so that he can receive me as a father welcomes a grieving son,” delle Foglie told local media, “The holy mass is not celebrated to honour the dead, is to remember the dead, and the more one has sinned, the more one asks for

Read Full Article – http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/priest-who-was-banned-giving-mafia-boss-mass-seeks-meeting-pope-francis-1598593


Produced by / @nickolaushines
Updated on December 12, 2016.

Some 400,000 bottles worth of sparkling Italian wine will never see the bottle this year. An unidentified crew of miscreants with a mysterious motive snuck onto the grounds of the historic Italian winery Conte Vistarino and emptied steel tanks filled with Riesling, Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, and other white wines from the 2016 harvest. The staff came to work the morning after the act of vandalism to find $530,000 worth of grape juice and skins on the floor.

The perpetrators didn’t damage any other equipment or steal anything from the winery though, which leaves some to speculate that this act was committed out of spite, The Telegraph writes.

“If you have no idea why, you don’t sleep at night,” Ottavia Giorgi di Vistarino, the countess who manages the winery, told The Telegraph. “The team is shaken, but we won’t let it stop us. We’ll just have to roll up our sleeves and get back to work.”

Italian wine producers, not just Conte Vistarino, have been having a rough couple of years. Mafia members have infiltrated parts of the wine business and are bringing a mafia sensibility to the wine business, a 60 Minutes piece revealed in early 2016. Mafia-tainted olive oil, wine, and cheese — all of which fall under the term “Agromafia,” 60 Minutes reports — is a $16 billion-a-year business. In terms of wine, the Agromafia is notorious for mixing a lesser quality wine with a famous brand and selling it as the famous brand.

Read Full – http://vinepair.com/booze-news/italian-wine-drained/

Italy police nab mafia fugitive known as ‘The Dancer’

One of the most wanted fugitive bosses of the notorious Calabrian mafia was arrested on Thursday in what the government hailed as a “beautiful” victory for Italy’s fight against organized crime.

Marcello Pesce, the leader of one of the most powerful clans in the ‘Ndrangheta syndicate that controls much of Europe’s cocaine trade, was arrested in a flat in his home town of Rosarno in Calabria in Italy’s deep south.

Nicknamed “The Dancer”, Pesce, 52, was described by prosectuor Gaetano Paci as an intelligent, educated man. Books found in his residence included works by French writers Marcel Proust and Jean-Paul Sartre.

“Today is a beautiful day for Italy: Marcello Pesce, one of the most dangerous mafia figures still at large was brought to justice,” Interior Minister Angelino Alfano posted on Twitter.

Authorities accuse Pesce of being the ruthless head of a family-based clan that controls drug trafficking through the port of Gioia Tauro and also being behind the exploitation of migrant workers employed illegally in the local orange groves.

Former allies have testified to him ordering several killings, including one of an associate who had refused to kill a man blamed for a car accident in which Pesce’s wife died.

Police have been hunting him since 2010, when he was convicted, in his absence, of mafia association and sentenced to 15 years in prison, later raised to 16 years on appeal. Authorities had feared he had fled overseas.

Notoriously ruthless, the ‘Ndrangheta has surpassed Sicily’s Cosa Nostra and the Naples-based Camorra to become Italy’s most powerful criminal organisation thanks to its pivotal role in smuggling cocaine from South America into Europe via north Africa and southern Italy.

The clan-based syndicate has links with Colombian producer cartels, Mexican crime gangs and mafia families in New York and other parts of North America, according to police.

It remains anchored in the rural, mountainous and under-developed “toe” of Italy’s boot but has also bought up legitimate businesses across the country to launder its illicit profits.

The name ‘Ndrangheta comes from the Greek for courage or loyalty and the organization’s secretive culture and brutal enforcement of codes of silence have made it very difficult to penetrate, although authorities claim significant progress in the last two years.

In one notorious 2013 incident an internal feud was settled by a hitman being fed alive to pigs that had been deliberately starved.

THE BLACK AXE: Italy faces chilling new organised crime group MORE RUTHLESS than the mafia

ITALY is facing a terrifying new organised crime threat from gangsters who are even more merciless than the homegrown mafia.

The Black Axe – a Nigerian criminal network that rules by fear – is involved in drug dealing, prostitution and the fraudulent transfer of money between Europe and Nigeria.

And the ruthless organisation is now working alongside the Sicilian mafia – the notorious and powerful Cosa Nostra – after striking a deal with underworld bosses in the island’s capital Palermo and buying the rights to operate in designated areas.

Deputy prosecutor Leonardo Agueci said: “Cosa Nostra tolerates the Nigerian mafia in Palermo. Cosa Nostra allowed the Nigerians to organise a subordinate structure they were tolerated as long as they didn’t come outside their perimeter.”


Full Article – http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/734772/Black-Axe-Mafia-Cosa-Nostra-Sicily-Palermo-Italy-Nigeria-Lagos