In the Italian city of Lamezia Terme in Calabria began the largest trial for the past 30 years of members of the mafia group “Ndrangheta”, reports the publication The Local.
There are 355 suspected mafia members on trial, as well as officials, businessmen, and lawyers suspected of complicity with them. It is noted that during the preliminary hearing it took three hours just to list the names of the alleged criminals.
The defendants in the case are accused of committing a series of crimes in the 90s. The list includes money laundering and extortion, as well as homicide, drug trafficking, and abuse of office.
According to The Local, the trial will be held in a special secure building. It is planned to hear more than 900 witnesses, including 58 former Mafia members. In addition, it is necessary to analyze many documents and materials of expertise.
Another 92 people previously confessed to the crimes and will be tried on an expedited basis. Among those who have repented is a former senator from Silvio Berlusconi’s party, the lawyer Giancarlo Pitelli. Almost all those involved in the case were arrested in 2019; the investigation had been ongoing since 2016.
“The BBC notes that the large-scale proceedings can be compared to the 1986-1987 trial in Italy, which resulted in the conviction of 338 members of the Sicilian “Cosa Nostra.”