Italy’s latest tactic to beat the mafia: take away mobsters’ children

In the cities where the mafia is strongest, some argue that to prevent the next generation turning to crime, children should be taken away from their mobster families, reports Sofia Barbarani in Spoleto

Sunday 07 November 2021 16:51
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<p>A special courtroom on January 13, 2021 prior to the opening of the 'Rinascita-Scott' maxi-trial in which more than 350 alleged members of Calabria's 'Ndrangheta mafia group and their associates go on trial in Lamezia Terme, Calabria</p>

A special courtroom on January 13, 2021 prior to the opening of the 'Rinascita-Scott' maxi-trial in which more than 350 alleged members of Calabria's 'Ndrangheta mafia group and their associates go on trial in Lamezia Terme, Calabria

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Born of necessity in the late 19th century to fill a gap in Sicily’s weak law enforcement, the Italian mafia quickly evolved and boomed after the Second World War ended. In time, groups like Cosa Nostra, the ‘Ndrangheta and the Camorra took their places among the world’s top criminal organisations, dealing in drugs, extortion, and money laundering.

High-level arrests, sting operations and government institutions purposefully created to stop the clans have achieved limited results, as they continue to leave victims in their wake and cost the state a hefty sum of money.

But while both state and citizens struggle to defeat them, some anti-mafia activists have been calling for a different and controversial battle plan: removing newborns from clan parents.

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