Mafia 'Godmother' arrested

ROME - After 13 years on the run, the woman with 'the eyes of ice' who reputedly directed a crime syndicate for her imprisoned brother gave herself up to police who came knocking at dawn yesterday at a fortified villa outside Naples, police said.

The arrest of Rosetta Cutolo, 57, in the mob stronghold of Ottaviano was the second important strike by authorities at organised crime in less than a month. On 15 January, the man believed to be the Siclian Mafia's 'boss of bosses,' Salvatore 'Toto' Riina was arrested in Palermo. He had been a fugitive for 23 years.

Authorities believe Rosetta Cutolo had been running the syndicate for her brother, Raffaele Cutolo, who is serving a life sentence in a Sardinian prison for crimes in the name of his Nuova Camorra Organizzata, a powerful branch of the Camorra, as Neapolitan crime gangs are known.

'Is Rosetta in?' a Naples police official, Umberto Vecchione, said he asked Cutolo's wife, Immacolata Iacone, as she opened the door for officers. In reply, Rosetta Cutolo appeared at the entrance, saying 'I am tired of being a fugitive,' Mr Vecchione recounted, according to the Italian news agency AGI in Naples.

'Rosetta Cutolo had been followed around the world, protected by gangsters but in the end we succeeded in arresting her' Luigi Rossi, an official of the state police said in Rome.

Lately, she 'had made frequent trips in South America, first in Brazil, then in Venezuela near the border with Colombia,' AGI quoted Mr Rossi as saying. 'The woman, a real crime manager, moved continually, even in Italy, to keep her eye on various activities.'

Cutolo is nicknamed 'ice eyes' for the hardened look from her blue eyes. She never married, apparently to devote her life to her brother. She had been sought since 9 September, 1981, when she was believed to have escaped during a police raid on a house in search of crime bosses.

She was sentenced in absentia in 1990 to nine years in prison on charges of criminal association. Her brother took over the Camorra in the early 1980s after gang battles that left hundreds dead in the Naples area. In the last few years, the Nuova Camorra Organizzata is believed to have lost much of its dominance to a Camorra rival, the Nuova Famiglia.

MILAN - Police yesterday hailed the arrest of a close ally of the Socialist leader, Bettino Craxi, as a key move in the investigation into a bribery scandal that has rocked Italy's political establishment, Reuter reports.

Silvano Larini, an architect, surrendered on Sunday to police at Ventimiglia on the French border after eight months on the run in Paris, police said. Magistrates and police allege Mr Larini played a pivotal role in channelling bribes paid for public works contracts to the Socialist Party, netting it millions of pounds.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
News
Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Voices
Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
News
Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
life
News
Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
scienceA Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick