- Category: News
- Created on Thursday, 22 December 2011 14:43
- Written by Administrator
The Italians say the Netherlands has become a safe haven for gangsters, who are believed to run a thriving network for cocaine smuggling and money laundering between the two countries.
A delegation from the state prosecution department (Openbare Ministerie/OM) travelled to Rome last week for a meeting with Pietro Grasso, the head of Italy’s anti-mafia prosecution team.
The investigation will be the first time that the full extent of the Italian mafia’s dealings in the Netherlands have been officially documented.
Access to Europe’s largest harbour in Rotterdam is one of the main attractions for the mafia, who are also believed to be responsible for a number of killings in the Netherlands and Germany.
‘In the last few years more than 20 fugitive members of various mafia-type groups have been arrested in the Netherlands and handed over to Italy,” Gerrit van der Burg, head of the OM’s national division, told NRC.
A 63-year-old Dutchman, Greg R., was arrested in June at the request of the Italians, who claim he conspired with the mafia to organise cocaine trafficking from Venezuela on a massive scale.
Italian prosecutors say R., who is currently detained in Naples, is one of the Netherlands’ leading mafia associates and have asked the court to jail him for 16 years. He will be sentenced in January.