The power of the Sicilian Mafia also known as Cosa Nostra has been severely weakened over the last few years due to arrests by Italian authorities and the growth of its rivals. The loss of its top leaders known as “boss of bosses” such as Toto Riina captured in 2003, Bernardo Provenzano captured in 2006, and Salvatore lo Piccolo captured in 2007 has also been a major problem for the crime syndicate. Some Italian mafia insiders believe reputed mob boss Matteo Messina Denaro took over as “boss of bosses” after the arrest of lo Piccolo but this is debated by many others as he has been under police pressure and on run since 1993. Many of the older clan bosses have also been convicted and sentenced to life sentences or been eliminated one way or another many of which were part of “la Cupola“. The Cupola is the name for the governing committee made up of top clan bosses of the Sicilian Mafia.
“Former Cosa Nostra boss of bosses Toto Riina, Bernardo Provenzano, and Salvatore lo Piccolo”
Italian authorities believe a new generation of Sicilian mafia bosses are now attempting to rebuild the Cupola and reorganize the Cosa Nostra clans. This newer generation of bosses are young and ambitious and have been seen meeting in some of the best restaurants in Palermo. About twenty of these meetings have been filmed and closely monitored by authorities in the past two years according to a report by leading mob journalists Salvo Palazzolo. At these meetings pacts are made, declarations of war, and murders are believed to be agreed upon. It is still unclear as to how effective these new leaders have been in their attempts to re-create the Cupola and reorganize the clans. An attempt was made back in 2011 to reconstitute the ruling panel but ended with 36 alleged mobsters being arrested for mafia conspiracy.
Italian mafia expert Corrado de Rosa said he doesn’t think the new Sicilian mafia bosses sitting at the table today may not be as powerful as previous bosses were but they are still a threat. He also noted that with the uncertain political climate in Italy its no surprise that the clans of the Sicilian mafia are now seeking to work together more closely and looking to reorganize themselves.