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Bane Of Mafiosi: PN Wants To Make ‘Mafia’ Membership A Crime Punishable By Up To 15 Years In Jail

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Anyone who forms part of a mafia-like criminal association will be liable to an imprisonment term of between 10 to 15 years if a bill proposed by the Nationalist Party comes into force. 

Part of a landmark bill to fight white-collar crime, the PN’s proposal is based on ‘416 bis’, a law that Italy passed in 1982 to clamp down on the Mafia. 

This means that prosecutors can indict an individual for association with a Mafia-type organisation, even without a direct link between the individual and a criminal act.

The PN is defining mafia-style criminal association as follows: 

“A criminal association is mafia-style when its members exercise the power to intimidate through membership ties, the state of control, and a culture of ‘secrecy’ which it fosters, to commit an offence, to acquire direct or indirect control over economic activities, licensing, authorisations, public procurement or service contracts, or to obtain a profit or advantage for themselves or others, or to prevent or hinder the free exercise of voting rights, or to obtain votes for them or others in elections.”

Anyone belonging to a criminal association deemed to be mafia-like will be liable, for that fact alone, to imprisonment from 10 or 15 years. Anyone who promotes, directs or organises a criminal association deemed to be mafia-like will risk jail time for 12 to 18 years.

Penalties will be aggravated if the group is armed with regular or explosive weapons.  

Civil society NGO Repubblika had proposed similar legislation in the wake of the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

Investigations have uncovered links between the criminal underworld, big business and politics, with a public inquiry finding the state responsible for creating a “culture of impunity” that facilitated the murder.

Cover photo: Stock image 

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Tim is interested in the rapid evolution of human society brought about by technological advances. He’s passionate about justice, human rights and cutting-edge political debates. You can follow him on Twitter at @timdiacono or reach out to him at [email protected]

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