January 27, 2023

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Italy. Matteo Messina Denaro, boss of the Cosa Nostra mafia, is being held in Sicily. Italian media commentary

The Italian media described the arrest announced on Monday of Sicilian mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro, who has been hiding from justice for 30 years, as the capture of the “last godfather”. However, commentators warn that this is not the end of the fight against organized crime in Italy.

The Italian press confirms that the last boss and organizer of the mafia attacks in Italy in 1992-1993, in which the magistrates Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino were killed, and when attacks took place in Rome, Florence and Milan, fell into their hands. from the justice system. It is also indicated that he is the last big boss of the Sicilian Mafia after Toto Riina and Bernardo Provenzano, who were arrested earlier after decades of searching.

Matteo Messina Denaro, 60, was sentenced to life imprisonment for several crimes, and he was detained in a well-known clinic, where he came to receive chemotherapy, which continued after the oncological surgery he underwent a year ago.

Matteo Messina Denaro was arrestedPAP/EPA/CARABINIERI

The media about the details of the arrest of the head of the Sicilian mafia

The daily La Repubblica describes the arrest of the chief of the Cosa Nostra leaders as a “historic operation” and says it is “a success for a working country”. He also explains, quoting the investigators, that the clue that led to the wanted man was the cancer that the Carabinieri discovered half a year ago. They received an indication that he had cancer, had surgery, and was undergoing chemotherapy. Then, in Sicily, a search began for a patient whose clinical profile matched what was available to the officers based on the information obtained.

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Moreover, the Romanian newspaper revealed, the wanted leader of Cosa Nostra, who was subjected to a false identity in the name of Andrea Bonafede, was vaccinated three times, for the first time in March 2021, at the start of the vaccination campaign. He was vaccinated as seriously ill at a medical center in his hometown of Castelvetrano in southern Sicily. He used the same ID at a clinic in Palermo, where he had been at least six times in the past two years.

Matteo Messina Denaro – Scaled image on the rightPublic Domain / Polizia di Stato

The daily quoted medical facility staff who said that whenever he came for chemotherapy he would bring everyone gifts, including olive oil.

Mafia end claims ‘fatal mistake’

The famous Italian writer Roberto Saviano, author of the best-selling book “Gomorra”, states in a commentary in “Corriere della Sera” that the last perpetrators of the mafia attacks have been arrested. He records that in his youth, Messina Denaro was a favorite of the then Cosa Nostra president Toto Riina.

Messina Denaro was so cruel that he killed and dissolved in acid 12-year-old Giuseppe Di Matteo, a converted son of a mafia, – Saviano recalls.

Matteo Messina Denaro was arrested in PalermoPAP/EPA – Carabinieri ANSA

In the same column, former anti-mafia prosecutor Gian Carlo Caselli stressed that the arrest of the dangerous boss was a “gift to democracy”. But he warned that this did not mean the end of the mafia.

La Stampa describes the detainee as “the last spiritual father.” Also in this newspaper, opinions were expressed that it would be a “terrible mistake” to claim that the state had defeated Cosa Nostra. The Turin newspaper reports that the mafia boss was arrested a day after the 30th anniversary of the arrest of one of his predecessors – Toto Riina, who had been in hiding for 23 years.

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Main image source: PAP/EPA/CARABINIERI