Commisso 'ndrina

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Commisso 'ndrina
Founding locationMarina di Gioiosa Ionica, Calabria, Italy
TerritorySiderno and Locride; Greater Toronto in Canada
Criminal activitiesRacketeering, drug trafficking, money laundering, extortion
AlliesPiromalli 'ndrina
Pesce 'ndrina
RivalsCosta 'ndrina
Rizzuto crime family

The Commisso 'ndrina (Italian: [komˈmisso, ˈkɔmmisso]) is a powerful clan of the 'Ndrangheta, a criminal and mafia-type organization in Calabria, Italy. The 'ndrina is based in Siderno, but has an important branch of the Siderno Group in the Greater Toronto Area in Canada.

In Siderno[edit]

Siderno was the fiefdom of Antonio Macrì the undisputed boss at the time. In January 1975, Macrì was killed in the so-called First 'Ndrangheta war. His right-hand man – who was wounded in the attack on Macrì – Francesco Commisso was intended to be his successor. However, he appointed his son, Cosimo Commisso, also known as "the quail" ("'u quagghia"), as the boss of the locale of Siderno.[1] Giuseppe Commisso (u mastru) is also an influential figure in Siderno.[2]

In the 1980s, the Commisso were challenged by the Costa 'ndrina over the command of Siderno.[1] The Costas had returned from Toronto. By 1991, the feud – that spilled over to Toronto as well – ended in a victory for the Commisso clan. Officially, there were 28 dead among the Costas and eight among the Commissos. Cosimo Commisso was sentenced over the vendetta and his cousin Antonio Commisso succeeded him as the acting boss of the clan.[1]

The Commissos are one of the 'Ndrangheta's biggest and most important clans, involved in the global cocaine business and money laundering.[3] They were members 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.[4]

In Canada[edit]

By the end of the 1970s, the Commissos had put together a criminal enterprise that "rivalled the best of the Sicilian Mafia structures existing in the United States and which was, in terms of pure muscle and audacity, one of the most powerful mafia groups in Canada".[5] They "controlled a criminal organization that imported and distributed heroin with the Vancouver mob and the Calabrian Mafia in Italy, fenced stolen goods across North America, printed and distributed counterfeit money throughout Canada and the United States, ran a vast extortion network in Ontario, arranged insurance and land frauds in the Toronto area, and engaged in contract killings and contract-enforcement work across Canada and the United States – the whole gamut of violent criminal activities one usually associates with the Mafia".[5]

In the 1980s the Buffalo crime family also operated in Toronto and Hamilton, and hired Satan's Choice MC hitman Cecil Kirby to kill Pietro Scarcella and Paul Volpe in an arrangement with Rocco Remo and Cosimo Commisso to gain more control of the market. However, the plot was foiled when Kirby turned Royal Canadian Mounted Police informant.[6][7]

Canada is a safe haven for fugitives from Italy who have allies on the other side of the Atlantic. One of them, Antonio Commisso, was arrested on June 28, 2005 in Woodbridge, Ontario.[8][9] According to the Siderno police force, "the criminal minds of Siderno are in Canada".[10]

Originally from Richmond Hill, Ontario, Antonio Coluccio (who had used the alias Giuseppe Scarfo in Canada) was one of 29 people named in arrest warrants in Italy in September 2014. Police said they were part of the Commisso 'ndrina. In July 2018, Coluccio was sentenced to 30 years in prison for corruption. His two brothers were already in prison due to Mafia-related convictions.[11]

On June 28, 2018, Cosimo Ernesto Commisso, of Woodbridge, Ontario and an unrelated female were shot and killed. According to sources contacted by the Toronto Star, "Commisso was related to "The Quail" of Siderno, Italy, who has had relations in Ontario, is considered by police to be a "'Ndrangheta organized crime boss".[12] The National Post reported that Cosimo Ernesto Commisso, while not a known criminal, "shares a name and family ties with a man who has for decades been reputed to be a Mafia leader in the Toronto area".[13]


  1. ^ a b c Back to the 'wolves', National Post, July 30, 2005
  2. ^ "Commisso " u mastru" non andava arrestato".
  3. ^ ‹See Tfd›(in Italian) Gratteri & Nicaso, Fratelli di Sangue, p. 133
  4. ^ ‹See Tfd›(in Italian) Sentenza procedimento penale Olimpia Archived July 22, 2011, at the Wayback Machine, Tribunale di Reggio Calabria, January 19, 1999
  5. ^ a b Schneider, Iced: The Story of Organized Crime in Canada, p. 327
  6. ^ "Mob war led to Russo shooting, sources say". 16 April 2005. Retrieved 25 May 2017.
  7. ^ Schneider, Iced: The Story of Organized Crime in Canada,pp.330
  8. ^ "» cronaca » Preso a Toronto Antonio Commisso boss della 'ndrangheta di Siderno".
  9. ^ ‹See Tfd›(in Italian) Latitante Commisso arrestato da Polizia in Canada[permanent dead link], ANSA, June 28, 2005
  10. ^ Why Italy's scariest Mob loves Canada, National Post, November 24, 2007
  11. ^ Peter Edwards (18 July 2018). "Former GTA resident convicted of Mafia charges in Italy". Toronto Star.
  12. ^ "Man killed in Woodbridge shooting had family ties to organized crime - The Star".
  13. ^ "'The less you know the better it is': Mob links in murder of man, woman on quiet Woodbridge street". 29 June 2018.