Sicilian city had lengthy, bloody previous earlier than “Godfather” fame

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CORLEONE, Sicily (AP) — Corleone is a Sicilian medieval hill city whose bloody previous started generations earlier than “The Godfather” novels and movies borrowed its title for a fictional Mafia don.

It is the birthplace of a number of convicted real-life Mafia bosses, amongst them Salvatore “Toto” Riina, the reputed “boss of bosses,” who died Friday at 87 in a jail ward of a northern Italian hospital.

Corleone has witnessed latest indicators of rebel in opposition to an entrenched Mafia tradition the place non secular pageants pay tribute to reigning mob bosses, with processions stopping outdoors the dons’ houses.

A city sq. is known as after two high anti-Mafia magistrates slain by Cosa Nostra bombings in 1992. Inaugurated in 2000, an anti-Mafia museum, along with the International Center for Anti-Mafia documentation, additionally educates guests concerning the fallen heroes within the battle in opposition to the Sicilian crime syndicate.

When native son Riina was arrested in 1993 in Palermo, schoolchildren bumped into Corleone’s streets in pleasure, rallying behind a banner that learn “Finally” — their jubilation a mirrored image of a brand new and burgeoning resistance to the Mafia by a youthful technology of Sicilians.

FILE - In this April 24, 2006 file photo a crucifix towers over the Sicilian town of Corleone, southern Italy, the ancestral home of Mafia boss Salvatore 'Toto' Riina. Italian media reported Friday, Nov. 17, 2017 that Riina died at the age of 87 in the hospital while serving multiple life sentences as the mastermind of a bloody strategy to badbadinate Italian prosecutors and law enforcement trying to bring down the Cosa Nostra. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, files)

FILE – In this April 24, 2006 file picture a crucifix towers over the Sicilian city of Corleone, southern Italy, the ancestral residence of Mafia boss Salvatore ‘Toto’ Riina. Italian media reported Friday, Nov. 17, 2017 that Riina died on the age of 87 within the hospital whereas serving a number of life sentences because the mastermind of a bloody technique to badbadinate Italian prosecutors and legislation enforcement making an attempt to convey down the Cosa Nostra. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, information)

But the Mafia’s grip in town is not simply eliminated.

Corleone’s City Hall is at present run by authorities despatched from Rome’s Interior Ministry after the municipal authorities was dissolved by authorities decree as a result of Mafia infiltration. Local public contracts have lengthy been a standard supply of earnings for Cosa Nostra.

Whether the tip of the Riina period will spell change for Corleone was unclear for its citizenry.

Whoever his successor as the highest Mafia boss could also be, “I know for sure there is still a (Mafia) mentality here that we need to dismantle,” mentioned Mario Alfieri a Corleone pharmacist.

A cameraman films the Sicilian town of Corleone, southern Italy, Friday, Nov. 17, 2017. Mafia boss Salvatore 'Toto' Riina died early Friday in a hospital while serving 26 life sentences as the mastermind of a bloody strategy to badbadinate rivals as well as Italian prosecutors and law enforcement trying to bring down Cosa Nostra. (Michele Naccari/ANSA via AP)

A cameraman movies the Sicilian city of Corleone, southern Italy, Friday, Nov. 17, 2017. Mafia boss Salvatore ‘Toto’ Riina died early Friday in a hospital whereas serving 26 life sentences because the mastermind of a bloody technique to badbadinate rivals in addition to Italian prosecutors and legislation enforcement making an attempt to convey down Cosa Nostra. (Michele Naccari/ANSA by way of AP)

An worker of the anti-Mafia museum, Lorena Pecorella, famous that Riina died in jail, “where it was right for him to die.” She mentioned the city’s destructive heritage as a synonym for the Mafia will likely be tough to eradicate.

“We know the negative heritage he is leaving us young people,” she mentioned.

Old-timers within the city can recall when within the 1950s and 1960s, mother and father warned kids to return residence straight from college as a result of Mafia rivalry was exploding right into a killing practically day-after-day. Riina’s predecessor as a high boss, Luciano Liggio, emerged from a string of bloody murders, together with one sequence triggered by the killing of a Mafia don who was a distinguished city doctor.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This materials is probably not printed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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