Italian police have arrested mafia leader Pasquale Bonavota at a church in Genoa. Bonavota, 49, was the only person still on the run after a large-scale raid in 2019 that made 334 arrests. He is part of the ‘ndrangheta from Calabria, one of the largest and most powerful mafia organizations in the world.
According to the newspaper Corriere della Sera, the police followed him for some time before he entered the church. Upon his arrest, he said, “Maybe I’m not the Pasquale you’re looking for. I was only here to perform the Rosary.”
He was one of the most wanted Italian criminals and was on the Interior Ministry’s list of the most dangerous fugitives. According to the judiciary, he “represented the interests of the organization in the Rome area and dealt with the gambling sector and drug trafficking”. He is charged with membership in the mafia and murder, among other things.
Italian Interior Minister Matteo Piantedosi called his arrest a “strong state reaction” that shows “the great commitment of the judiciary and authorities” in the fight against organized crime. Earlier this year, the police also arrested a head member of the mafia. Matteo Messina Denaro was arrested in Sicily. He was on the run for thirty years.
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