RECAP: Rocco Morabito, alleged ‘Ndrangheta boss who was on the run for 28 years, returns to Rome
He has been identified as one of the top narcotics brokers in the world, according to the Italian police. A Milan court found Morabito, 55, guilty in absentia of all charges against him in 2001, and he now has to serve a 30-year sentence in prison for his crimes.
One of Italy’s most wanted absconders, a convicted mobster and one of the most wanted mobsters in the country, has been extradited from Brazil after 28 years on the run after he was convicted.
On the most wanted and dangerous mobsters’ list in Italy, Rocco Morabito was ranked as the number two most wanted criminal. In addition to his involvement in the ‘Ndrangheta, which generates billions of Euros in revenue each year from the cocaine trade, he was already convicted in absentia of drug trafficking twenty years ago, since he was a member of the ‘Ndrangheta organized criminal syndicate.
He was apprehended by Brazilian police in May 2021 as part of a coordinated operation that involved Italian as well as US detectives. Morabito was arrested in Uruguay in 2017 and imprisoned there for two years before escaping from custody two years later. Italian police have been looking for him since 1994.
The anti-mafia prosecution in Calabria alleges that Morabito played a significant role in the trafficking of cocaine from South America to Milan, which is a major market for the sale of the narcotic throughout the rest of Italy and Europe.
Additionally, Morabito was found to have been involved with mafia gangs in Italy as well as trafficking drugs.
The authorities in Uruguay at the time reported that Morabito had been living under an assumed identity. He had a forged Brazilian passport when he was apprehended in Uruguay in 2017. A Mercedes coupe, 13 smartphones, a stockpile of cash, and a 9mm revolver were reportedly seized by police during his detention in a Montevideo hotel while he was being held.
The big fella of the Cosa Nostra in Sicily, Matteo Messina Denaro, has been on the run since 1993. Despite this, he is still considered to be the man with the most power in the Cosa Nostra in Sicily. He is currently the number one person on Italy’s most wanted list.
Several investigations have revealed that the Ndrangheta, unlike the Sicilian mafia, has recently expanded into more countries in Europe and has been using companies like these to launder the proceeds of cocaine trafficking. It has surpassed that organization in size and influence in recent years.
There have been many bosses of the Cosa Nostra who have been sentenced to life in prison. This is thanks to the efforts of a small army of traitors who have worked on their behalf. Due to its strong family roots, the ‘Ndrangheta is less likely to betray clan loyalty.
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