On Thursday, Italian police said they had caught a top boss of the ‘Ndrangheta gang who had been on the run for almost five years. He was on a list of the most dangerous criminals made by the cops.
Pasquale Bonavota, who is 49 years old, had been wanted since November 2018 because he had gotten away from a judge in Calabria, in southern Italy, who had issued an arrest warrant for him for murder and mob ties. The carabinieri police said in a statement that he was arrested Thursday morning in the northern port city of Genoa.
The tweet below verifies the news:
Local reports said he was leaving the city’s cathedral when he was arrested and was carrying a fake ID.
The ‘Ndrangheta’s Bonavota clan, which includes his two brothers and is based in the Sant’Onofrio area of the Calabrian town of Vibo Valentia, looks to Bonavota as its leader. The clan is also active around Rome and in the northern areas of Piedmont and Liguria, which includes Genoa.
Long-ignored “Fourth Mafia” turns out to be Italy’s most deadly group
The ‘Ndrangheta is Italy’s most powerful and well-off organized crime group. They control most of the cocaine that comes into Europe. It works in more than 40 countries around the world. It has been very good at growing outside of its traditional areas of drug trafficking and loan sharking. Now, it uses shell companies and frontmen to put illegal money back into the legal economy.
Bonavota ran away after a lower court sentenced him to life in jail for killing two people in 2014 and 2004. One was a low-ranking member of his own clan, and the other was the boss of a rival clan.
In 2021, while he was on the run, an appeals court overturned that term.
But Bonavota was the last fugitive suspect in the big case against the Vibo Valentia ‘Ndrangheta that led to the 2021 trial of more than 300 accused mafia members and people who helped them.
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The Case is Still Being Heard
In that indictment, Bonavota is called a leader who, along with other top ‘Ndrangheta bosses, “made the most important decisions” and “looked out for the group’s interests in the Rome area, in the gambling business, and in drug trafficking.”
Edgardo Greco, an Italian fugitive and convicted murderer who was thought to be a member of the ‘Ndrangheta, was caught after more than 16 years on the run, including time spent working at a pizza restaurant in France, the Interpol international police agency said. Bonavota was caught less than three months after Greco.
Matteo Messina Denaro, the Cosa Nostra boss from Sicily who had been on the run for 30 years, was caught by Italian police in January. Italian media said that Messina Denaro had been getting treatment for colon cancer at the private hospital “La Maddalena” for the past year under the fake name “Andrea Buonafede.”
People cheered and clapped for the police when they heard that they had caught the known criminal, according to people who saw it happen.
Giorgia Meloni, the prime minister of Italy, said that the arrest was “a big win for the state that shows it will never give up on the mafia.”
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