Italian Mafias Today
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Italian Mafias Today

Territory, Business and Politics

Edited by Felia Allum, Isabella Clough Marinaro and Rocco Sciarrone

Despite a rapidly changing economic and legal landscape, Italian mafias remain prominent actors in the global criminal underworld. This book provides an extensive and up-to-date view of how they adapt to shifting economic opportunities and intensifying legal and civic backlash.
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Chapter 10: Lombardy, the long march of the Ndrangheta: Old history and new stories

Nando dalla Chiesa


This chapter examines the expansion and presence of the ‘Ndrangheta - Italy’s most powerful mafia - in the rich and cosmopolitan northern region of Lombardy. It argues that a process of colonisation is under way, carried out through a continuous and silent conquest from below and the highly effective use of low-profile violence. The study examines how the organisation conditions the functioning of local political and economic life, imposing certain aspects of its original culture, like the code of silence. It thereby analyses the Lombard ‘Ndrangheta’s relationship with Calabria, as well as highlighting how civil society has reacted to this criminal phenomenon over time.

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