One hundred arrested in mafia drug operation

One hundred arrested in mafia drug operation
File photo of police in Naples. Photo: Giorgio Montersino/Flickr
Over 100 people with links to the notorious Di Lauro mafia clan were arrested on Wednesday in connection with drug trafficking, attempted murder and the possession of weapons. Arrests include Raffaele Di Lauro, the son of the clan's boss.

According to a 1,000-page arrest warrant referenced by La Stampa newspaper, the Di Lauro crime clan, which is part of the Neapolitan mafia known as the Camorra, earned around €4.5 million through a 24-hour drug selling operation between April 1st 2007 and May 3rd 2008.

Christmas 2007 was the most profitable for the clan, according to the police report, when the group sold an alleged €102,000 of narcotics.

The clan’s alleged expenses ranged from lawyers, armed guards and mechanics to lovers and weapons.

The arrests were made as part of an extensive investigation carried out by the Special Operations Squad and the provincial police in Naples.

Arrested clan members included Raffaele Di Lauro, 19, the son of the clan’s boss Paolo Di Lauro, who was captured while on a cruise ship in Sicily with his girlfriend. The trip, which allegedly cost around €10,000, had been a birthday present to his girlfriend, the paper said.

A traffic officer called Gennaro Faella was also arrested. Faella allegedly received a salary of €200 per week from the clan in exchange for useful information such as the installation of a surveillance camera in front of a bar frequented by the group.

The Di Lauro clan, which operates in several Neapolitan neighbourhoods and adjacent municipalities, became notorious in 2004 when a bloody feud broke out between the Di Lauro clan and the “scissionisti” or “secessionists” led by Raffaele Amato, a breakaway faction of the clan.

The war resulted in 60 murders between 2004 and 2005.

The clan’s patriarch, Paolo Di Lauro, was eventually captured in 2005 and is still serving a prison sentence.

Marco Di Lauro, another son of Di Lauro, is currently on the run after an arrest warrant was issued against him in 2006 but investigators say they are optimistic that he will be captured. 

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