#AceNewsReport – Aug.08: Maria Licciardi, 70, was cuffed at Ciampino airport in Rome Saturday while attempting to fly to Malaga in southern Spain.
#AceDailyNews says a female mafia boss known as Maria Licciardi was arrested in Rome on Saturday while trying to fly to Spain to ‘visit daughter’ she is alleged to be part of the notorious Neapolitan mafia known as the Camorra, was hoping to visit her daughter and to ‘attend to some business’, according to Italian newspaper La Repubblica.
But she was arrested while queueing at the check-in desk by the Carabineros Corps – Italy‘s military police.
Ms Licciardi, known as ‘la piccoletta’ or the little one due to her small stature, was with two associates at the time and went with the officers quietly, according to reports.
She is accused of mafia-type association, extortion, receiving ill-gotten funds and auction rigging.
Prosecutors allege she is the boss of the Licciardi clan, which was founded by her brother Gennaro, aka La Scimmia (the monkey), in 1994.
The gang is said to be most active in Secondigliano, a peripheral and rundown neighbourhood in Naples which is believed to be key to the drug trade.
Ms Licciardi previously spent eight years in prison before being released in December 2009.
It comes after Italian investigators warned that its country’s mafias have been eyeing up business expansion in Spain.
General Giuseppe Governale, the anti-mafia director of Italy until 2020, warned that the influence of the Italian mafias was particularly prevalent in the Balearic Islands.
The Camorra has a known presence on the islands, which include Ibiza and Majorca, due to their strategic geographical position, which makes them a port of call for drugs coming from South America.
Palermo prosecutor Francesco Lo Voi also warned mafias will take advantage of the pandemic to buy bankrupt companies in the tourism sector throughout the continent, particularly on the Spanish coast or in France.
Following the death of her brother, Ms Licciardi is said to have taken over the family clan and maintained control by bringing together an informal coalition of 20 other Camorra groups.
This allowed the mafia to expand control of Naples’ most lucrative rackets, inclduing drugs, cigarette smuggling, protection and more.
It is said that the coalition, known as the Secondigliano Alliance, became more organised, secretive and powerful under her leadership, reported the Telegraph.
But this alliance fell apart in the year 2000 when a bitter and deadly feud with the Lo Russo family over an alleged heroin shipment spilled out on the streets of Naples – with more than 50 killings attributed to the row.
She would be jailed a year later before being released in 2009 and allegedly picking up where she left off.
Before being sent to prison, Ms Licciardi, also known as ‘the godmother’, is alleged to have added prostitution to the Camorra’s business empire – despite it going against the organisation’s code.
According to reports, the clan would buy women, many of them underage, from the Albanian mafia.
Ms Licciardi has always shunned the limelight and has been described as charismatic.
Police sources previously described her as ‘practical, charming, exceptionally intelligent’ but also as ruthless as her male equivalents.
The Camorra is the oldest criminal organisation in Italy
The Camorra is based in Campania, centred around Naples.
Like Cosa Nostra and the ‘Ndrangheta, it is a criminal organisation, or secret society that finances itself through drug trafficking and distribution, cigarette smuggling, people smuggling, kidnapping, blackmail, bribery, prostitution, toxic waste disposal, construction, counterfeiting, loan sharking, money laundering, illegal gambling, robbery, arms smuggling, extortion, protection, political corruption, and racketeering.
Its activities have led to high levels of murder in the areas in which it operates. It is the oldest and largest criminal organisation in Italy.
It is older than the other organisations, possibly having been founded as early as the 16th century.
The name originated as a blend between the word ‘Capo’ meaning boss, and ‘Morra’ which was a gambling game played on the streets of Naples.
When the game was banned, the ‘Camoristi’ earned money from ‘protecting’ the gamblers from passing policemen.
Unlike Cosa Nostra, individual Camorra clans act independently of each other, and are more prone to feuding among themselves.
This however makes the Camorra more resilient when top leaders are arrested or killed, with new clans and organisations germinating out of the stumps of old ones.
As one clan boss told a court: ‘Campania can get worse because you could cut into a Camorra group, but another ten could emerge from it.’
Source: understandingitaly.com – MailOnline/Telegraph/La Republica/
#AceNewsDesk report ………Published: Aug.08: 2021:
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