A mafia hitman who has been on the run for 16 years was arrested Thursday in France where he worked as a pizza chef.
Edgardo Greco, 63, was convicted of murdering two men in the early 1990s after ties to the notorious Italian criminal group Ndrangheta, authorities said. Arrested by French police in the city of Saint-Etienne.
He was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of brothers Stefano and Giuseppe Bartolomeo in 1991 and is described as a dangerous fugitive. Italian police said they were beaten to death with metal rods at a fishmonger in Calabria. “Their bodies were extinguished and never found again,” police said.
Greco has also been charged with attempted murder in a separate case.
According to Italian news agency ANSA, Greco disguised his identity and worked as a pizza chef at an Italian restaurant in France. Italian police have released a photo of Greco in a white chef’s coat in what is believed to be the restaurant’s kitchen.
Interpol, the international police agency that coordinated the case with the French and Italian police authorities, said Greco’s crimes were linked to the Pino Senna and Perna Plano organized crime syndicates in the Cosenza region of southern Italy in the early 1990s. announced that it was related to the Mafia War.
He was held responsible for the deaths of two people in the so-called Maxi trial, which prosecuted and convicted hundreds of gangsters between 1986 and 1992. Police said in 2006 they had “evaded” a pretrial detention order related to that trial.
Greco, who escaped in October 2006, was issued a European arrest warrant by the Catanzaro public prosecutor’s office in southern Italy.
French police, with the help of Italian colleagues, arrested Edgardo Greco in Saint-Etienne, France, according to a statement from Interpol.
Thursday’s arrest comes two weeks after Italian police arrested Mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro.
“No matter how much a fugitive tries to live a peaceful life abroad, he or she cannot escape justice forever. Matteo Piantedosi, Minister of the Interior of Italy, said: ‘Dedicated investigators around the world will always seek justice.’ I assure you,” he said.
“The arrest of Edgardo Greco brings one of Italy’s worst criminals to justice and is once again a testament to the competence and dedication of our country’s police, who have now acted in concert with the French authorities.” Stated.
The operation was part of Interpol’s ‘Project I‑CAN’, launched in 2020 with Italian funding and targeting the criminal group ‘Ndrangheta. Interpol is said to have helped arrest dozens of fugitives around the world.
Ndrangheta has long been a major concern of the Italian authorities. Regarded as Italy’s most dangerous and powerful criminal gang, it has global ties and strong ties to the trafficking of South American cocaine to Europe.
In 2021, about 350 alleged members of “Ndrangheta” appeared in court in a class trial in Calabria, southern Italy.
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