What are serious crimes in Italy?

Italy, known for its history, landscapes, and cuisine, grapples with a hidden reality of serious crimes. This condensed article focuses on organized crime, corruption, and mafia activities, which have long affected the European country.

  1. Italy’s Criminal Landscape: An Unfortunate Tradition
    Italy ranks 48th out of 180 countries for perceived corruption (Transparency International). Organized crime, including mafia groups like Sicily’s Cosa Nostra and others from Campania, Calabria, and Puglia, has persisted for decades.

  2. The Dark Side of La Cosa Nostra:

    An Enduring Menace

    Cosa Nostra terrorized Sicily with notorious cases like the 1973 kidnapping and murder of American heiress Edvige Antonucci.

  3. Corruption: A Systemic Illness
    Italy’s political class has been accused of corruption. In the early 2000s, "Operation Clean Hands" targeted high-ranking politicians and businessmen. EU Commissioner Franco Frattini described corruption as a structural problem.


  1. Which Italian crime families are notorious?
    A: Some of the most infamous include Sicily’s Cosa Nostra, Campania’s Camorra, Calabria’s ‘Ndrangheta, and Puglia’s Sacra Corona Unita.
  2. How does corruption impact Italy’s economy?
    A: It hinders growth by creating an uneven business environment, deterring foreign investment, and eroding trust in institutions.
  3. What actions have been taken to combat organized crime and corruption in Italy?
    A: Steps include increased police presence, harsher penalties, and specialized anti-mafia units, but more is needed to address the root causes.

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