Mafia members in Sicily are teaming up with a Nigerian gang that uses machetes on its enemies and only accepts degree-qualified members, to run sex rings on the Italian island.
Police sources told The Times that members of the Vikings—a gang that sprung out of Nigerian universities in the 1980s and demands that members have no criminal record—have collaborated with the local Cosa Nostra, or the Sicilian Mafia in Ballaro, a town in Sicily, and were threatening to expand into the capital Palermo.
The groups have worked together on vice rings involving Nigerian women who have been trafficked to Italy as sex workers. Nigerian women began traveling to Italy in the 1980s to work as fruit pickers but soon turned to sex work, and an estimated 30,000 have since been trafficked from the West African country to work as prostitutes in Italy and elsewhere in Europe, The Guardian reported.
Read Full – http://www.newsweek.com/mafia-nigeria-migration-sex-work-trafficking-629627
Sicilian authorities have refused to pay Italy’s “baby bonus” to the youngest daughter of jailed Mafia boss Toto Riina, 36-year-old Lucia.
A painter, Lucia lives in Corleone and gave birth earlier this month.
Salvatore “Toto” Riina, former boss of the notorious Cosa Nostra, was jailed in 1993 and now has terminal cancer.
Italy’s top court ruled this month that he had a right to “die with dignity” under house arrest but there were protests and he may not be let out.
A parole board will have to decide in the northern city of Bologna, where 86-year-old Riina is in jail for his role in dozens of Cosa Nostra murders.
Two anti-Mafia judges – Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino – were killed in 1992, in Riina’s “war against the state”.
Read Full – http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-40326094
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
The mass was supposed to remember Rocco Sollecito, a mobster killed in Canada in May.
By Sofia Lotto Persio
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
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/