They arrested 31 mafiosi in my little town yesterday, and two of them were neighbours of mine. The newspapers are saying that this has practically demolished the Mafia in this town.
Personally I am not so sure. Fighting the Mafia is like trying to eliminate cockroaches. You can stamp on a couple but there are always about 100 more, dashing about the cupboard under the sink waiting for their chance to get promoted to the fruit bowl.
But anyway, let’s enjoy this moment of victory. At least I am free of two scary neighbours!
In traditional style, let me list their various crimes:
1. Mafia association (in Italy this is a crime in itself, even if they cannot prove anything specific you may have done)
5. armed robbery
6. Not paying their share of my street’s water bill hence making me live in a house with no running water for a year
7. Having the most hideous-looking plucked eyebrows (yes, on a MAN) I have ever seen
They were largely captured with the help of two pentiti (“repenters”). The arrests and the investigation have resolved about 50 previously unsolved homicides and revealed the criminal activities of lots of local businesses and local politicians who were previously regarded as pillars of the community.
Of course we all knew who most of the crooks were already.
“Don’t eat in that pizzeria,” people will whisper “they’re Mafiosi there.”
“That local councillor takes massive bribes and sits as work listening to porno phone lines all day,” they mutter.
“His business is a big success in this economic crisis and we all know why,” they will hiss under their breath.
I am really looking forward to cruising around town over the next few weeks to find out which commercial establishments will have “closed” signs displayed.
Since I live literally cheek by jowl with some of these people, I shall not name any names nor post mugshots (real stunners though they are). Here instead are my two favourite Carabinieri photos again, just to honour the courage of the Italian “Boys in Blue.”