Reggio Calabria

'Ndrangheta crime boss fugitive turns self in

Man accused of running clan surrenders after 3 year hiding

Reggio Calabria, May 16 - Fugitive 'Ndrangheta mafia boss Giuseppe Pesce turned himself into police on Wednesday. Pesce, 33, is believed to control the Rosarno clan, one of the most notorious in Italy's wealthy, international 'Ndrangheta crime syndicate, which is rooted in the Calabrian region in the toe of Italy's boot. After three years on the run, Cosce presented himself to local paramilitary Carabinieri police accompanied by his two defense lawyers, and was immediately taken to the Palmi maximum security prison on the Calabrian coast. "Enough, I'm tired of running. Better to end it here," Pesce reportedly told his defense lawyers, Gregorio Cacciola and Benito Infantino, when he asked them to take him to police. Pesce's surrender marks a new important victory in law enforcement efforts that have decimated the ranks of the Rosarno clan, which has been targeted by a hard-driving probe run by anti-mafia police in Reggio Calabria and prosecutor Alessandra Cerreti. A maxi-trial in Palmi ended May 3 in 42 convictions - and sentences ranging from six months to 28 years - and landed Pesce 16 years for mafia association. But Pesce still faces trial for the graver crime of actually commanding the Rosarno clan. Investigators believe Pesce was given the task by his 35-year-old brother, Francesco Pesce, who slipped him a note - or '"pizzino" - in jail. Giuseppe Pesce was the only male member of the family not in prison at the time. The Rosarno clan has been dismantled largely thanks to Francesco and Giuseppe's cousin Giuseppina Pesce, a mafia informer, whose revelations have enabled Reggio Calabrian anti-mafia police to conduct a long series of arrests and round-ups. Two recent arrests were essential for smoking out the fugitive boss, according to investigators, cutting off Pesce's lifelines. The first was the April 16 arrest of Pesce's alleged lieutenant, 35-year-old Domenico Sibio, believed to have had a key role in Pesce's hiding arrangements. Then on May 5, police arrested Pesce's 24-year-old wife, Ilenia Bellocco, accused of facilitating contact between her husband and his conspirators.

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