Justice Coup to the Calabrian mafia 'Ndrangheta: an international raid leaves 90 detainees in Europe
More than 300 alleged members of the 'Ndrangheta, the mafia of the Italian region of Calabria (south), the most powerful today, will be tried from this Wednesday in
a process considered historic due to its size and significance
In total there will be 355 gangsters, politicians and businessmen who will sit on the bench of the Vibo Valentia Court, accused of belonging to this criminal organization or collaborating with it.
While 88 other subjects have opted for the abbreviated process and will be tried in parallel from January 27.
All these people were
arrested or charged in the framework of the "Rinascita-Scott" operation
, directed and culminated in 2019 by the Catanzaro prosecutor,
, against the Calabrian clans in Italy, Germany, Bulgaria and Switzerland.
They must respond to charges such as belonging to a mafia association, homicide, attempted murder, extortion, illegal possession of weapons and explosives, influence peddling, corruption, abuse of power and drug trafficking.
It is an anti-mafia process of great importance only surpassed in number of defendants by the one in Palermo in 1986, when the Sicilian Cosa Nostra was tried, persecuted by judges such as
Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino
, both murdered in 1992. On this occasion they were has had to
build a classroom-bunker in an industrial area of Lamezia Terme
that will allow the trial to be held safely and host the hundreds of people who will attend it.
And it is that in addition to the 355 defendants, with their respective lawyers,
a total of 913 witnesses who broke the
, the law of silence,
will pass through the place
to denounce the alleged abuses and crimes of which they were being victims.
At the center of the investigations is the "'Ndrina", or Mancuso clan, considered by researchers to be one of the most powerful and influential families of the Calabrian' Ndrangheta.
, one of the highest authorities of this mafia, will be tried again for controlling the clan's businesses after his release in 2012, as he spent 20 years of his life behind bars for his criminal activity.
Calabria, the poorest region
The authorities came to think of making the trial in other regions, but finally they have opted for it to take place in the place from which the 'Ndrangheta operates, Calabria, at the tip of the Italian Boot.
The Minister of Justice,
, has defended the choice to remain in Calabria as a sign of the presence of the State
in this remote region, the poorest and most abandoned
At present, the 'Ndrangheta is the most powerful mafia in Italy and one of the most prosperous on the planet, with a
turnover of around 50,000 million euros a year
, as the prosecutor Gratteri recently explained in a meeting with the foreign press in Italy.
With the impenetrable mountains of Calabria and the town of San Luca as a stronghold, it was long undervalued as a petty criminal organization confined to that territory.
However, over time it grew and spread its tentacles around the world thanks to the business of games of chance, public tenders and
especially drugs that arrived largely from Latin America
to the Calabrian port of Gioia Tauro.
Now the authorities intend to try and convict the gangsters, but also the soldiers, politicians and businessmen who collaborated in the expansion of this criminal organization.
Among the accused are
lawyer and former parliamentarian for Silvio Berlusconi's party, Forza Italia;
Mario Lo Riggio
or the former mayor of Nicotera,
Prosecutor Gratteri, with an escort for decades for his investigations, has defended the relevance of this trial on several occasions and has assured that he never considered leaving his job and his investigations.
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