The Italian police have once again handed out a tick to the Calabrese ‘ndrangheta, the most powerful Mafia organization in the world. During a major operation called Basso Profilo (‘Unobtrusive‘) at least 48 people were arrested. 35 of them are allowed to stay in house arrest.
During the action, at least 200 officers, four dog units and a helicopter were deployed throughout the country. Most of the suspects are mafiosi, but also entrepreneurs and politicians are part of the investigation. They are suspected of illegally moving funds worth approximately EUR 300 million. In search, cars, bank accounts, furniture, mail and inbuddings were confiscated from companies.
The home of national party leader of the centre democratic UDP and former MEP Lorenzo Cesa has also been searched. He claims to be innocent, but he resigned as leader of his party. A party member in Calabria, who is head of finance in the region, is under house arrest.
Operation Unobtrusive was initiated by the Calabrese Anti-Mafia Attorney Nicola Gratteri. He is currently the chief prosecutor in a mega-trial against some 400 ‘ndrangetaleden and collaborators.
The ‘ndrangheta consists of an estimated 10,000 members and has an annual turnover comparable to the largest companies in Italy. The study of these politicians proves how deeply the ‘ndrangheta has penetrated Italian society. In this respect, picking up 48 people does not seem much, but together with the lawsuit, these kinds of actions keep the pressure on the Calabrese mafia high.