Italy breaks up Chinese ‘transport mafia’ – prosecutors

Italian law enforcement agencies have broken up a Chinese organized crime ring that used money from its activities to force its way into European trucking companies, AP reported. The organization used mafia methods, including intimidation, extortion and violence, and tried to impose control over the movement of Chinese-made goods in much of Europe, top anti-Mafia prosecutor Federico Cafiero de Raho said in Florence on Thursday. He said the ring earned cash from drug trafficking, gambling and prostitution in locations throughout Italy. The money was used to take over transportation companies in Italy, France, Spain and Germany. More than 50 people were under investigation, most in the Tuscan city of Prato, a key center of Chinese business in Italy. Arrest warrants were issued for 33 people. The criminal components hail mostly from the Chinese provinces of Zhejiang and Fujian, according to police.