Italian Channel airs images of fugitive mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro

The latest images of the mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro, the mafia boss fugitive since 1993, taken by the security cameras positioned in the street in Agrigento, a hilltop city on Sicily’s southwest shore, was aired on an Italian channel by Tg2. In October 1994, he had managed to escape capture and then moved to South America. These images dated back to 2009 and were the only ones in possession of investigators since the ‘Interpol red notice’ was sought. The video is in possession of the investigators of the Central Crime Directorate of the Police.

Giovanni Brusca, the former boss of San Giuseppe Jato, the ex killer of Cosa Nostra who on May 23 1992, activated remote control for the Capaci bombing, killing magistrate Giovanni Falcone, his wife Francesca Morvillo, and three police escort agents, Vito Schifani, Rocco Dicillo and Antonio Montinaro.

He was captured in Agrigento on May 20, 1996, from the villa of Cannatello of a Favarese supporter of the mafia.

After his release, the 52-year-old Morabito, the top Ndrangheta figure (a prominent Italian Mafia-type organized crime syndicate based in the region of Calabria dating back to the late 18th century), was arrested in Uruguay in 2017 after decades on the run and was awaiting extradition to Italy. He managed to escape in 2019 with three other inmates from the terrace of the ‘Central’ prison in Montevideo, Uruguay, with suspected help of members of the Bellocco resident between Buenos Aires and Montevideo.

Since then, the Italian investigators have followed his trail all over South America. By then, Morabito had the main point of reference for drug trafficking cartels. Rocco Morabito was considered to be the number one broker who managed cocaine trafficking for South American cartels.

Morabito, a native of Africo, in the Locride in Calabria, was traced in Joao Pessoa with another drug trafficker, Vincenzo Pasquino, from Turin. Morabito is included in the lists of the most dangerous fugitives belonging to the “special research program” and Pasquino in that of fugitives ‘dangerous documents’ drawn up by the Ministry of the Interior. The arrest was a collaboration between the Ros, the carabinieri of the group of Locri (Reggio Calabria), the provincial commands of Reggio Calabria and Turin, and the men of the central police cooperation service – the I-CAN project, of the Brazilian federal police. The US FBI and DEA also collaborated in his capture.

Morabito is the cousin of the boss Giuseppe Morabito, known as “‘u tiradrittu’ (the straight shooter). According to the investigators, he managed a huge drug trafficking that branched off from South America to Sicily, then to Lombardy and Calabria, flooding Italy with cocaine.

In Uruguay, he was known as ‘Souza’. As the police ascertained, the mafia boss had managed to obtain Brazilian documents on which the name of Francisco Antonio Capeletto Souza of Rio de Janeiro.

After serving his prison sentence, Brusca was released from prison on May 31, 2021, serving 25 years of the sentence due to a law passed on February 13, 2001. Having chosen to collaborate with the justice system, he obtained a reduced penalty provided for by the law.

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