Brazil, media: extradition of ‘Ndrangheta boss Rocco Morabito suspended

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The extradition to Italy of the 55-year-old boss of the ‘Ndrangheta Rocco Morabito, considered one of the most important international drug traffickers in the world, has been suspended in Brazil due to the existence of an arrest warrant against him presented in Sao Paulo . According to the weekly Vejathe Ministry of Justice informed the Federal Supreme Court (Stf) that it had suspended the extradition for the possible opening of a proceeding against him by the Brazilian justice.

The legal process

On 24 June the Supreme Court had rejected the latest appeal by Morabito’s lawyers and the judge of the highest court, Cármen Lúcia, had ordered the extradition to Italy within a month. The Brazilian Undersecretary of Justice, José Vicente Santini, had consequently authorized on behalf of the federal government the handing over of the man to the Italian authorities, having received no reports of pending lawsuits against him. But on June 27, the federal police reportedly communicated to the Ministry of Justice the presence of a provisional arrest warrant against Morabito in the state of São Paulo, which is why the extradition process would have been blocked.

Who is Rocco Morabito

Known as “‘u tamunga”, Rocco Morabito was born in 1966 in Africo, in the province of Reggio Calabria, and is the grandson of Giuseppe Morabito, boss of one of the most powerful gangsters in Locride. Sentenced to 30 years in prison in 1994 for mafia-type association and drug trafficking, since February 1995 he has been included in the list of the most dangerous fugitives in Italy. Captured for the first time in Montevideo, Paraguay, after 23 years on the run, Morabito managed to escape from prison in June 2019. After almost 2 years he was arrested on May 24, 2021 by the Brazilian police with the investigative support of the Carabinieri of the ROS, of the Provincial Commands of Turin and of the SCIP (Service for International Police Cooperation of the Department of Public Security) with the collaboration of the FBI and the DEA.