Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Sicilian mob kingpin arrested

Settimino Mineo, jeweller and new head of the Sicilian mafia is escorted by carabinieri as he exits a police station after his arrest in Palermo Italian Mafia 'godfather' Settimo Mineo held in Sicily raid
Deanna Wagner | 08 December, 2018, 19:10

They believe he took over the reins of the Mafia empire following the death of "boss of bosses" Salvatore "Toto" Riina, who died in jail a year ago.

The suspects are accused of extortion, illegal gun possession, arson, Mafia association and other crimes, investigators said.

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Police are yet to release a comprehensive list of those arrested in Palermo, but revealed that Settimo Mineo, the head of the crime syndicate, was apprehended in the raids.

In the end, the leaders of several clans "Cosa Nostra" took the decision to restore the leadership structure of the mafia, providing Miney powers of the so-called godfather.

"The need to reestablish certain rules that Cosa Nostra had lost along the way, they were applied less because of the organisation's overall disorganization", Lo Voi said.

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Mineo has already served 11 years in prison after he was arrested in a maxi-trial led by prosecutor and judge Giovanni Falcone that targeted the Cosa Nostra.

It was the first time clan leaders had gathered in such a forum for years, and followed the November 2017 death of Riina, prosecutors said. "Mineo had been elected "heir" of Toto Riina after his death", Di Maio added. "There is no more room for this type of scum in Italy", Di Maio wrote on Instagram.

The Sicilian Mafia - the Cosa Nostra - managed to rebuild its leadership, known as the Cupola, after it had not met for years, reports say. Italy's Minister of Interior Matteo Salvini said on Twitter that Tuesday's operation had, in essence, decapitated the mob.

The cupola held a secret meeting in Palermo in May, the first gathering of mob families for 25 years, at which it reportedly made a decision to formally anoint Mineo as the head of Cosa Nostra.

Falcone was murdered in a massive vehicle bombing in 1992.

Mineo survived a 1992 ambush that killed his brother Giuseppe, around six months after another brother, Antonino, was murdered outside the family jewelry shop.