Today's letter from the Editor
Today's Matrices
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Accounts Assistant - Fixed Term Contract - 6 Months

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...

Recruitment Genius: Electricians - Fixed Wire Testing

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a result of significant cont...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisor

£16575 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An excellent opportunity is ava...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Digital Marketing Executive

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading and innovative con...

Page 3 Profile: Roberto Pannunzi, drug baron

I don’t recognise him.

Nor should you. Pannunzi was Europe’s most wanted drug trafficker, the linchpin of the transatlantic cocaine trade, a blood relation of the Calabrian ’Ndrangheta  clan and a go-between for them, the Cosa Nostra family of Sicily and the Colombian drug cartels – and the only man to go to if you’re looking for a delivery of upwards of 3,000kg of the stuff, apparently.

How much does that set you back?

Your guess is as good as ours, but one thing is for certain – he made an awful lot from it. Always travelling with a suitcase of cash and wearing a string of diamonds around his neck, Pannunzi once asked the head of a special police unit who had burst in on him: “Do you want a million dollars? In cash? Right now?”

So crime does pay?

No! The man known as Bebè (baby) is out of luck. He was captured on Friday in Bogota in a joint operation by the Colombian police and US drugs officers. He’s now languishing in prison in his  native Italy.

And he’s there for good?

Hard to say. He’s been captured twice before – and walked away scot free both times. In 1994, the Colombian officer turned down that cash offer, but Pannunzi was released after five years of having no successful trial brought against him. Recaptured in 2004, he was sentenced to 16 years by an Italian court but was transferred to a private clinic six years later on health ground – and vanished.

Anything to say in his defence?

He looks the part. He ran a men’s boutique in Rome as a cover for many years, and was always immaculately turned out. And unlike infamous drug lord Pablo  , he is said to have never killed anyone. If a freshly-pressed sports jacket and blood-free hands are all you ask, then Pannunzi is as innocent as his nickname suggests.

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Career Services

Day In a Page

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map
Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

This was the year of 24-carat Golden Oldies
Paris Fashion Week

Paris Fashion Week

Thom Browne's scarecrows offer a rare beacon in commercial offerings
A year of the caliphate:

Isis, a year of the caliphate

Who can defeat the so-called 'Islamic State' – and how?
Marks and Spencer: Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?

Marks and Spencer

Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?
'We haven't invaded France': Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak

'We haven't invaded France'

Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak
Isis in Kobani: Why we ignore the worst of the massacres

Why do we ignore the worst of the massacres?

The West’s determination not to offend its Sunni allies helps Isis and puts us all at risk, says Patrick Cockburn
7/7 bombings 10 years on: Four emergency workers who saved lives recall the shocking day that 52 people were killed

Remembering 7/7 ten years on

Four emergency workers recall their memories of that day – and reveal how it's affected them ever since
Humans: Are the scientists developing robots in danger of replicating the hit Channel 4 drama?

They’re here to help

We want robots to do our drudge work, and to look enough like us for comfort. But are the scientists developing artificial intelligence in danger of replicating the TV drama Humans?
Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

'Heritage' is a loaded word in the Dixie, but the Charleston killings show how dangerous it is to cling to a deadly past, says Rupert Cornwell
What exactly does 'one' mean? Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue

What exactly does 'one' mean?

Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue