Italy's 'Godmother' mafia boss arrested at Rome airport

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Italy's 'Godmother' mafia boss arrested at Rome airport
A car of Italian carabinieri patrols Piazza del Plebiscito in Nalpes, 02 November 2006. Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi was in Naples on Thursday to present a new plan for fighting organized crime in the southern city, which has seen 12 murders over 10 days. AFP PHOTO / MARIO LAPORTA (Photo by MARIO LAPORTA / AFP)

A top female mafia boss in Naples, Maria Licciardi, was arrested Saturday while attempting to fly to Spain, Italian media reports said.


The 70-year-old, known as "la piccoletta" or the little one because of her small stature, is the sister of the late Gennaro Licciardi, founder of the family Camorra clan based in the suburbs of Scampia and Secondigliano.

She had served eight years in prison previously, being released in December 2009, according to media reports, after which she is alleged to have taken over the clan's operations.

Two different undated photographs show top female camorra (Neapolitan mafia) boss Maria Licciardi with dark hair (L) and right with blonde hair. Photo: picture-alliance / dpa/dpaweb | Ciro_Fusco


She was arrested at Rome's Ciampino airport while dropping off her bags ahead of a flight to Spain, where her daughter lives, news agencies reported.

She is accused of mafia-type association, extortion, receiving ill-gotten funds and auction-rigging.




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