International strike on Italian criminal gang: Europe-wide raids, 84 arrests

Operation against members of 'Ndrangheta Italian mafia 

Giovanni Bombardieri, Frederico Cafiero de Raho and Horst Bien (L-R) during the press conference at Eurojust about the police operation against members of ‘Ndrangheta Italian mafia in The Hague, The Netherlands Dec. 5, 2018. EPA-EFE/ROBIN VAN LONKHUIJSEN

The Hague, Dec 5 (EFE).- At least 84 people were arrested Wednesday and almost 4,000 kilograms of cocaine seized in an international crackdown on an Italian organized crime gang, according to the European Union’s judicial cooperation unit.

According to Eurojust, police in Italy, the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium raided properties thought to be criminally linked to the ‘Ndrangheta.

Police made at least 84 arrests and froze around 2 million euros ($ 2.27 million) worth of assets, in what is being labeled by the agency «the largest coordinated joint action against an organized criminal group to date in Europe.»

The so-called «Pollino» operation was launched in 2016 by European law enforcement agencies and judicial authorities to target the criminal organization, which originated from Calabria in southern Italy.

Eurojust has published an extensive report on its website with detailed information on the nature of operations over the years as well as specific data on the outcome of the «action day» which on Wednesday delivered a large blow to the ‘Ndrangheta mafia group.

The ‘Ndrangheta is the most powerful Italian mafia organization, although not as widely known as the Sicilian Cosa Nostra.

The organization is allegedly involved in money laundering and drug trafficking.