Matteo Messina, the “boss of all bosses” of the mafia, arrested in Sicily after 30 years on the run | World | News

Mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro, the man dubbed ‘the boss of all bosses’ and considered one of the world’s most wanted criminals, has been arrested in Sicily after being on the loose for 30 years, admits scenes of public celebration. Denaro, nicknamed “Diabolik”, was detailed at a private clinic known as Maddalena Messina Denaro was captured at the clinic where he was receiving treatment for an undisclosed medical condition, Carabinieri General Pasquale Angelosanto said, who leads the police special ops team. , Ros Carabinieri police.

Messina Denaro was taken to a secret location by police immediately after the arrest, Italian state television reported.

Footage showed members of the public cheering and clapping after it was confirmed he had been taken into custody.

Son of a former mob boss, Messina Denaro has been a fugitive since 1993.

When he first ran away, the then-teenager wrote a letter to his girlfriend warning her name could be associated with “serious bloodshed”.

Writing after dozens of people were killed in massacres in Rome, Milan and Florence, he said: “You will hear from me.

“They will paint me as a devil, but they are all lies”.

In a police photo showing him sitting in a police van, Messina Denaro wore a brown leather jacket and white skull cap and his trademark tinted glasses. His face was pale. He was taken to a secret location by police immediately after his arrest, Italian state television reported.

A young man when he went into hiding, he is now 60 years old. Messina Denaro, who had a power base in the western Sicilian port city of Trapani, was considered the leader of the Cosa Nostra in Sicily, even while on the run.

He was the last of three longtime fugitive Mafia bosses who had evaded capture for decades.

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Messina Denaro, who was tried in absentia and found guilty of dozens of murders, faces multiple life sentences.

He is expected to be jailed for two bombings in Sicily in 1992 that killed top anti-Mafia prosecutors Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino. Among the other grisly crimes he was convicted of was the murder of the young son of a Mafia defector, who was strangled and his body dissolved in a vat of acid.

The arrest on Monday came 30 years and a day after the January 15, 1993 capture in 1993 of “boss of bosses” Salvatore “Toto” Riina, convicted in a Palermo apartment after 23 years on the run. Messina Denaro went into hiding in the summer of that year, as the Italian state carried out a crackdown on the Sicilian crime syndicate following the murders of Falcone and Borsellino.

Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni tweeted that the capture of Messina Denaro is a “great victory for the state, which shows that it does not surrender to the mafia”.

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The Italian mob boss who set the record for the longest time on the run was Bernardo Provenzano, captured from a farm near Corleone, Sicily, in 2006 after 38 years as a fugitive. Once Provenzano was in police hands, the hunt focused on Messina Denaro, but despite numerous reported sightings from the boss, he managed to evade arrest, until Monday.

That the three big bosses were finally arrested in the heart of Sicily while leading decades of a clandestine life will come as no surprise to Italian police and prosecutors.

Law enforcement has long said that these bosses rely on the contacts and confidentiality of fellow gangsters and conniving family members to move fugitives from hideout to hideout, meet basic needs, like food , clean clothing and communication, and a code of silence known as “omerta”. .”

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