Italian prosecutors have released and placed house arrest for several mafia bosses over fears of corona virus spreading in prisons, leading to criticism by some politicians.
Francesco Bonura, an influential drug tycoon from the mafia organization Cosa Nostra and Vincenzo Iannazzo, a member of the crime syndicates Ndrangheta and Pasquale Zagaria, a member of the Casalesi family was transferred to house arrest, according to Federico Cafiero De Raho, Italy’s anti-mafia prosecutor, CNN reported.
To prevent the spread of corona virus in prisons, the Italian government has authorized judges to transfer prisoners of 18 months or less to house arrest.
Three prisoners are being held under “additional isolation measures” to avoid contact with people outside the prison, as they have a role in mafia organizations, prosecutor Cafiero De Raho said.
“Once they are put under house arrest, these measures will no longer be enforced,” the prosecutor said. Bonura was sentenced to 23 years in prison for allegations of his role in a mafia and only 9 months left.
Iannazzo, sentenced to 14 years in prison in 2018 for an accomplice of a mafia. He is also known as the leader of a mighty family in the city of Lamezia Terme.
Zagaria, meanwhile, was arrested in 2007 and sentenced to 20 years in prison as a member of the mafia. He is considered to be the financial minded person behind the Casalesi family.
However, the release of mafia bosses has faced criticism from the people. “That is crazy. It is disrespectful to everyone, from judges, journalists, police and mafia victims, ”said Matteo Salvini, leader of the opposition Lega party.
Justice Minister Alfonso Bonafede said the decision to release the prisoners was made in a “self-determination and independent” manner by the judge, but the federal government was considering a proposal regarding the anti- The nation’s mafia in the final decision.
“In this time of crisis, mafia organizations can penetrate deeper into economic life, especially by supporting or even acquiring businesses that are financially inaccessible and unable to access. public aid, forcing them to turn to alternative criminal credit sources, “prosecutor Cafiero De Raho told CNN.
The total number of prisoners in Italy has decreased by 6,500 since February 29, according to the Ministry of Justice. Alessio Scandurra, coordinator of Antigone, an association of prisoners’ rights, said measures to prevent the Covid-19 epidemic and other factors behind the reduction in prisoners.