Somali migrant faces murder, torture charges in Italy

A Somali man faces charges in Italy for murder, torture and extortion allegedly committed among refugees in Libya after several migrants identified him by chance in Milan.

Somali migrant faces murder, torture charges in Italy
File photo of a migrant centre, like the one where Matammud was staying at. Photo: Andreas Solaro/AFP

Italian media reported Wednesday that Osman Matammud was arrested on September 26th outside a reception centre for migrants after around 15 people identified him and threatened to lynch him.

Initially believing he was a people smuggler, Italian authorities widened their investigation after a dozen alleged victims testified that Matammud, 22, committed serious offences in Bani Walid, Libya.

“In a career of 40 years I have never seen such a horror and it must be imagined that what  occurred at Bani Walid takes place in all the camps,” prosecutor Ilda Boccassini was quoted as saying.

In areas such as Bani Walid, smugglers pick up migrants, agreeing for a fee to move them but then use torture to extort more money from relatives in their home countries for sums up to $7,500.

Two young Somali women have accused Matammud of repeatedly raping them for months while other victims say that he battered migrants to death or let others die of starvation, press reports said.


 Italian police arrest mafia member after three women killed in Rome

Italian police on Saturday arrested a mafia member suspected of killing two alleged Chinese prostitutes and a Colombian sex worker in Rome, local media reported.

 Italian police arrest mafia member after three women killed in Rome

The bodies of the two Chinese women were discovered in a residential building in the upmarket Prati district on Thursday morning, while the body of the South American was found in an apartment in the same neighbourhood an hour later.

All three victims were stabbed, according to Italian media reports.

According to the Corriere della Sera newspaper, footage from surveillance cameras allowed police to identify 51-year-old Giandavide De Pau, who had been prosecuted in the past for drug trafficking and sexual assault.

The suspect is reportedly a member of a mafia clan headed by Michele Senese, who is currently serving a life sentence. De Pau is believed to have been one of Senese’s closest collaborators, acting as his personal driver and handyman.

In 2008 and 2011, the suspect had also spent time in a psychiatric hospital.

It is unknown whether the suspected killer was carrying out a mafia hit or acting alone, possibly under the influence of drugs, which were found at the home of some family members where he is believed to have sought refuge after the police manhunt got underway, Corriere della Sera reported.

Several newspapers had warned of a possible “serial killer” in the Italian capital.

The body of one of the Chinese victims was spotted by a neighbour where it lay, naked on a landing. The woman, believed to be in her 40s, had suffered head and stomach injuries, the newspaper said.

When police entered her apartment, they found the body of the second Chinese woman.

Nobody in the building appeared to have heard the murders take place, according to residents.

“Everybody knew there was a house of ill repute here, I’d see people arriving at 2:00 am, 3:00 am,” a woman who lived in the building told reporters.

The body of the Colombian, who was 65, was found by a friend, Corriere della Sera said.