Some imprisoned Mafia bosses have been released from prison and placed under house arrest in Italy due to the coronavirus emergency, anti-mafia prosecutor Federico Cafiero De Raho told CNN on Saturday. Opposition leader Matteo Salvini called the release from prison "crazy."
To prevent the spread of the infection within prison facilities, the Italian government has authorized magistrates to commute prison sentences into home detention if the time yet to serve is no longer than 18 months.
Cafiero De Raho confirmed that three Mafia bosses have been placed under strict isolation detention. They are identified as:
- Pasquale Zagaria, member of the Neapolitan Camorra
- Francesco Bonura of the Sicilian mafia "Cosa nostra"
- Vincenzo Iannazzo of the Calabria mafia "Ndrangheta."
"They are prisoners that, for the roles they had in Mafia organizations, require extra isolation measures in order to avoid being connected to the exterior world," Cafiero De Raho said. "Once they are sent back home, these measures are obviously no longer enforced."
The total number of prisoners in Italy has decreased by 6,500 since February 29, according to the Justice Ministry.
"But the decrease of inmates is not only due to the decree," explains Alessio Scandurra of the prisoner’s rights association Antigone. "The Covid-19 emergency led many magistrates, thanks to the discretion the law allows them, to favor house arrest."
"That is crazy," Salvin, the leader of the opposition League party, said in a Facebook video. "It’s a lack of respect for people, magistrates, journalist, policemen, and victims of the Mafia."