Salvatore Nicitra, ex-boss of the Magliana gang has been arrested. Over a period of a few years, he had taken mafia control of the management and distribution of the gambling equipment unit of Rome. The equipment includes video lottery, games, slot machines, and online betting.
A brief overview of the Magliana Gang
The Magliana Gang used to be a violent mafia group in Rome in the ’70s. They were affiliated with the mafia gangs of Italy which included Camorra, Ndrangheta and Cosa Nostra. These Italian mafias wanted to weaken Italy during the ‘Years of Lead’. In this time Italy was going through political and social problems and there were terrorist incidents that were linked to these gangs.
The Magliana Gang had been busted and after that Salvatore Nicitra had taken over the gambling sector using illicit methods. Over the years he has taken control and dominated the north side of the capital. He is considered to be the “King of Northern Rome”. He was previously arrested in June 2018 with Franco Gambacurta.
The disappearance of Salvatore’s brother and son
In June 1993, Nicitra’s eleven-year-old son Domenico and his brother Francesco mysteriously disappeared. Some say that they were murdered by rivals of Nicitra in a feud. However, there is no evidence of a body as they were never found. This happened during Nicitra’s time in prison for mafia linked offenses.
The operation led by the Carabinieri
The military police force of Italy, the Carabinieri on 11th February conducted an operation at the break of dawn. It was carried out in many provinces of Rome including Lecce, Terni, Padua, Viterbo and even in Austria and Spain.
The operation led to the arrest of thirty-eight people and they also seized assets of this criminal association which were worth over fifteen million Euros. These assets were obtained using illegal methods and were also used to commit mafia and other crimes, the Carabinieri believe after their investigations. The arrests were made on the charges of gang-related crimes, murder, and racketeering.
An investigation into “cold-house” crimes
The Carabinieri had been carrying out investigations to break this criminal gang and it led them to resolve five previous cases that occurred during the ’80s. One of these crimes happened in Aversa’s judicial psychiatric hospital, while four of the other crimes were committed in Primavelle’s Roman district.
These crimes involve the former boss Salvatore Nicitra who wanted to assert his dominance in Aurelio, Casalotti, Montespaccato, Cassia and Monte Mario that are Primavelle’s Roman districts.
The cold-house cases were for the murder of Valentino Belardinelli, Giampiero Caddo, double murder of Roberto Belardinelli and Pauline Angels, and the attempted murder of Franco Martinelli.
Future of the criminal association
While Nicitra has gotten away before, this time the turn in the investigation might make it harder. The asset seizure and arrests are also a big win for the Carabinieri who will now make sure the illegal mafia activities stop. The future of this gang may seem rocky right now however if history has taught us one thing, the Mafia find a way to continue.