Bellocco 'ndrina

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Bellocco 'ndrina
Founded 1960s
Founding location Rosarno, Calabria, Italy
Years active 1960s-present
Territory Rosarno and Varese (Lombardy)
Ethnicity Calabrians
Criminal activities Racketeering, extortion, drug trafficking and weapons trafficking
Allies Piromalli and Pesce 'ndrine

The Bellocco 'ndrina is a clan of the 'Ndrangheta, a criminal and mafia-type organisation in Calabria, Italy. The 'ndrina is based in Rosarno, on the Tyrrhenian coast, and belongs to the locale of that town.

Powerful 'Ndrangheta clan[edit]

The Bellocco clan is one of the most powerful clans in the 'Ndrangheta. Activities range from drug trafficking, extortion and the control of nearly all commercial businesses in the Gioia Tauro plain. Jointly with the Pesce clan and in collaboration with the Piromalli-Molè 'ndrina they controlled the public contracts for the construction of the container terminal in the port of Gioia Tauro.[1]

After the construction of the port, the Piromalli-Mole and Pesce-Bellocco clans controlled activities tied to the port, the hiring of workers, and relations with port unions and local institutions, according to a report of the Italian Antimafia Commission. They who would guarantee peace and order on the docks in return for a ‘security tax’ of US$1.50 per for each transshipped container.[2]

The clan also has a strong presence in northern Italy, in particular in Varese (Lombardy), where they controlled drug trafficking.[3]

Leadership[edit]

The head of the clan is Umberto Bellocco (1937), arrested in February 1993 [4] and currently in prison. Umberto or his brother Carmelo Bellocco became a member of La Provincia, a provincial commission of the 'Ndrangheta, formed at the end of the Second 'Ndrangheta war in September 1991 to avoid further internal conflicts.[5]

In the beginning of the 1980s Umberto Bellocco was involved in setting up the Sacra Corona Unita (SCU), a mafia-type organization in Apulia, to counter the growing influence of the Camorra. On his instigation Giuseppe Rogoli imported the codes, structure and initiation rites of the 'Ndrangheta to be used by the SCU.[6][7][8]

After his arrest in 1993, he was succeeded as acting boss by his cousin Gregorio Bellocco, arrested in February 2005, and Giuseppe Bellocco, arrested in July 2007.[9]

Recent developments[edit]

In January 2006, 54 members of the Bellocco-Pesce clan were arrested in an operation against international drug trafficking. They were supplying the drug markets in Milan, Como, Sondrio, Brescia, Bergamo, Treviso, Alessandria, Naples and Reggio Calabria.[10] The cocaine was imported from Colombia, Brazil, Spain and the Netherlands, heroin from the Balkans and ecstasy from the Netherlands.[6]

On January 12, 2010, the Italian police arrested 17 people in Bologna and Calabria linked to the Pesce-Bellocco clan. They were expanding their drug and arms trafficking activities to Bologna, where Carmello Bellocco was serving a 17-year sentence for racketeering. Bellocco is accused of leading the group's activities while on day-leave from prison.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ (Italian) 'Ndrangheta, arrestato boss "Uno dei 30 latitanti più pericolosi", La Repubblica, February 16, 2005
  2. ^ Gioia Tauro 'controlled by mafia for over a decade', Lloyd’s List, February 21, 2008
  3. ^ (Italian) Arrestato il boss della 'ndrangheta Bellocchio, Rai News, February 16, 2005
  4. ^ Mafia arrest, The Independent, February 18, 1993
  5. ^ (Italian) Sentenza procedimento penale Olimpia, Tribunale di Reggio Calabria, January 19, 1999
  6. ^ a b (Italian) Un cartello della ndrangheta gestiva il traffico della coca nel nord Italia, Nuova Cosenza, January 19, 2006
  7. ^ Sciarrone, Mafie vecchie, mafie nuove, p. 174
  8. ^ Audizione del collaboratore di giustizia Salvatore Annacondia, Commissione parlamentare di inchiesta sul fenomeno della mafia e sulle associazioni criminali similari, July 30, 1993
  9. ^ Don in a manger: Italy police nab wanted mobster, DPA, July 17, 2007
  10. ^ (Italian) 'Ndrangheta, maxiblitz antidroga: Colpita cosca Pesce-Bellocco:54 arresti, Tgcom, January 19, 2006
  11. ^ Anti-mafia police arrest 17 in 'Ndrangheta bust[permanent dead link], ANSA, January 12, 2010