Italy's 'top Mafia boss' is arrested
Tuesday 11 April 2006
The reputed head of Italy's Mafia, Bernardo Provenzano, was arrested today in the Sicilian countryside after more than 40 years on the run, the Interior Ministry said.
Provenzano, Italy's most wanted man, is believed to have taken over the Sicilian Mafia after the 1993 arrest of former boss Salvatore "Toto" Riina in Palermo.
Police had arrested "the man who, after the arrest of Toto Riina, is considered the most important person from Cosa Nostra," Interior Ministry Undersecretary Alfredo Mantovano said. He described the development as "an important step forward ... for the entire nation."
Italy's top anti-mafia prosecutor, Piero Grasso, who for years as Palermo's chief prosecutor had personally led the hunt for Provenzano, said on RAI radio that he felt "great satisfaction, great emotion" at the arrest.
A spokesman for the Palermo police, Agent Daniele Macaluso, said Provenzano had been arrested during the morning near Corleone, 37 miles south of Palermo and was being driven back to the Sicilian capital.
Provenzano has proven an elusive target.
Investigators have said they believe Provenzano has spent most of his years as a fugitive moving from house to house across Sicily, thanks largely to the help of Sicilians' reluctance to inform authorities.
Authorities even tracked the alleged mobster to a clinic in Marseille, France, where he apparently had prostate surgery, and showed a composite to clinic personnel.
As recently as last month, Provenzano's former lawyer was quoted as telling an Italian newspaper that the man was dead.
"I think he's dead, and has been dead for several years," Salvatore Traina was quoted as telling Rome-based daily La Repubblica. "They have looked for him everywhere, they have looked intensely for years but they can't find him. This must mean something."
Leoluca Orlando, former mayor of Palermo, immediately released a statement praising police and prosecutors in the Sicilian capital.
News of the arrest also prompted praise from many politicians, including President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi.
Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy
Want to ward off (or welcome) trick-or-treaters? Here's how
- 1 'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
- 2 Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
- 3 Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
- 4 If you think Russell Brand’s new book is confused, you should read what his critics have to say about it
- 5 Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
Halloween 2014: From the Screaming Man of Pluckley to the 'White Lady' of the Tower of London - Britain's 20 most haunted places
Russian politician says Apple CEO Tim Cook should be 'banned' from country after coming out as gay
Pope Francis declares evolution and Big Bang theory are real and God is not 'a magician with a magic wand'
Huge surge in Ukip support after EU funding row, according to new poll
Ukip ‘exploiting grooming scandal’ to secure party’s first police chief
Nigel Farage: 'There’s nothing wrong with white people blacking up'
Maureen Lipman says 'she can't vote Labour while Ed Miliband is leader'
Muslims, immigration and teenage pregnancy: British people are ignorant about almost everything
vary Attractive Salary: Austen Lloyd: MANCHESTER - AN OPENING AT A VERY HIGH Q...
£100 - £110 per day: Randstad Education Ilford: Nursery Manager Long term Ran...
£24000 - £25000 Per Annum plus company car and commission: Clearwater People S...
£45 - £65 per day: Randstad Education Bristol: Supply SEN Support Jobs in Bris...