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'Ndrangheta drug-traffic chief caught in Colombia

Domenico Trimboli nabbed in Medellin

26 April, 11:39
'Ndrangheta drug-traffic chief caught in Colombia (ANSA) - Rome, April 26 - The Calabrian 'Ndrangheta mafia's suspected head of drug trafficking between Colombia and Europe was arrested in Medellin Friday after three years on the run.

Domenico Trimboli, 39, a Buenos Aires native, was on the interior ministry's list of most wanted and dangerous 'Ndrangheta fugitives.

When he is extradited, Italian authorities said, he faces a 12-year sentence for drug crimes in Italy and abroad.

'Ndrangheta is Italy's richest mafia because of its control of the European cocaine trade.

It has spread from its base in Calabria to invest its drug money in the rich northern Italian economy and has big offshoots in northern Europe, Canada and Australia.

Ndrangheta' (from a Greek word meaning 'valour') once lived in the twin shadow of its Sicilian cousin Cosa Nostra and the Camorra in Naples.

It is regarded as the most impenetrable of Italy's mafias, with its close-knit family-based organisation outdoing the Sicilian mafia in its ability to defeat police efforts to turn members into state witnesses.

According to a recent report from the Eurispes research agency, annual drugs profits for 'Ndrangheta are now the equivalent of 3% of Italian GDP, and it gets more from other rackets.

The combined operations of the three mafias reportedly amount to 116 billion euros, the equivalent of 10% of Italy's GDP.

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