Polish cops cracking down on Italian mobsters
The arrest of mafia fugitive Edgardo Greco at a French pizzeria in Saint Etienne last week was hailed as a huge success for Italian cops.
On the run for nearly 17 years for the murder of two brothers in Calabria, the 63-year-old mobster was tracked down after boasting about his recipes in a local newspaper.
The arrest is the latest in a string of busts on Mafiosi across Europe fleeing justice, with many choosing to head to Poland.
In 2017, Luigi ‘Studente’ B., a member of the dangerous Napolitana Camorra of the Gallo-Cavalieri gang, was detained by Polish police and Italian Carabinieri in a pizzeria in Nowy Targ, lesser Poland.
Working as an advisor for their ‘truly Italian menu’, and even having one of the restaurant’s pizzas named after him, the 52-year-old had been on the run since 2013 for drug trafficking, which according to reports he still did in Polish territories alongside making pizza.
A few months later another Camorra mobster was nabbed in a small town near Rzeszów.
On the top of Italy’s most wanted list for six years, Napoli Antonio C. was found selling cleaning products door-to-door to support his Polish wife and child, who learned about his criminal past during the arrest.
In 2020, officers from Poland's Central Police Investigation Bureau’s ‘Shadow Hunters’ unit seized yet another mobster in a Kraków hotel.
The 40-year-old mafia kingpin identified as Alberto C. from Catania had gone on the run after Sicilian police swooped on 17 fellow gang members as part of an ongoing operation against organised crime.
The following year, another ‘Ndrangheta mobster named Domenico F. was seized after officers received a tip off from Italian cops.
The 37-year-old from the town of Saronno in Lombardy, was part of what Italian police called the ‘New European Narcos’.
Working with ENFAST, the serious crimes unit of Europol, Krakow police said at the time: “In mid-November 2021, the Italian police carried out a police operation in which over a hundred of the most dangerous criminals belonging to the Italian mafia structures were arrested.
“The criminals stayed not only in Italy, but also in other European Union countries, including Poland.
“Krakow ‘head hunters’ undertook intensive activities… and the Italian …will be brought to a court’ for extradition.”
Most recently, three Polish women were detained in November last year on suspicion of collaborating with the 'Ndrangheta.
The arrests were part of the I-CAN, a special Interpol division created solely to fight against the mafia group.
The women were accused of participating in a criminal group and money laundering in Poland and Italy.
The suspects' property, worth almost EUR 12 million, was seized and included four villas located in seaside and mountain resorts, cars, motorcycles, jewellery and luxury watches.