'Bankrupt' Italian couple caught on luxury yacht

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The couple were caught in the port town of Gaeta. Photo: Ern/Wikimedia Commons
16:02 CEST+02:00
An Italian couple wanted for faking their own bankruptcy have been caught by police disguised as holidaymakers, on board a luxury yacht registered to England.

Giovanni Sandomenico and his wife Margherita Giovanna Casale were caught by police in the harbour of Gaeta, southern Italy, Il Mattino reported on Wednesday.

Their arrest ends a near month-long hunt for the couple since they were found guilty on August 1st of falsely filing for bankruptcy. They had claimed that their train maintenance business SIGE Ferroviaria, in the southern town of Casagiove, had gone bust.

Aware that the couple’s family usually went to Gaeta in the summer, police disguised themselves as holidaymakers and went undercover in the port.

The authorities were able to trace the couple to a luxury yacht, the property of a company registered in England, but when police boarded the boat yesterday Sandomenico and Casale were nowhere to be found.

Officers decided a stakeout was in order and so - dressed in bermuda shorts and sandals - they blended back in with the tourist crowd.

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It was not long before the fraudsters returned to the yacht from their morning stroll, at which point they were promptly arrested.

Sandomenico has been taken to the nearby Frosinone prison to serve out his five-year sentence, whereas Casale, sentenced to three years and six months in jail, was sent to a women’s prison in Naples. 

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