Messina Denaro arrested in Palermo
Italy’s most wanted mafia boss caught!
Italian police have arrested the leader of the Sicilian Cosa Nostra, Messina Denaro. As the Carabinieri announced on Monday, the mafia boss and Italy’s most wanted criminal was arrested in Palermo.
Italian media published the first picture of the mafia boss in 30 years.
After three decades on the run, Italy’s most wanted mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro (60) has been arrested, according to media reports. Police officers arrested the man on Monday in a health facility in the Sicilian capital Palermo, police general Pasquale Angelosanto told the Italian news agency AGI. The mafioso, who went into hiding in 1993, was sentenced to life imprisonment in absentia for murder. He is considered the successor to the historical “godfathers” Bernardo Provenzano and Toto Riina, who died in prison in 2016 and 2017.
Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini confirmed the arrest. The “Superboss” Denaro was arrested, Salvini wrote in the messenger service Whatsapp. He was “deeply moved” and thanked “the women and men of the state who have never given up and confirm the rule that sooner or later even the biggest criminals are caught on the run”.
He did not use modern means of communication
Denaro was number one on the Italian Interior Ministry’s list of most wanted criminals. Since the turn of the millennium, the investigators had tried to isolate the now 60-year-old with the help of arrests in his environment and confiscations. This strategy has now been successful.
In 2015, the investigators discovered, among other things, that Denaro, who was born near Trapani in western Sicily, did without modern means of communication in order not to leave any traces. Instead, he used the age-old mafia method of “pizzini” – encoded messages on a small piece of paper – to instruct his henchmen. The only known photo of the fugitive so far was from the early 1990s. (afp/sda)