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Italian commandos arrest fugitive mafia boss

Italian police arrest a Mafia suspect in Naples on January 25, 2011
Italian police arrest a mafia suspect in Naples on January 25, 2011. Italian police commandos have arrested a fugitive mafia boss, finding a Kalashnikov rifle and two kilos (four pounds) of heroin and cocaine in a house near the hilltop town of Corigliano

Italian police commandos arrested a fugitive mafia boss on Sunday, finding a Kalashnikov rifle and two kilos (four pounds) of heroin and cocaine in a house near the hilltop town of Corigliano Calabro where he was hiding, authorities said.

Video footage released by police showed several commandos breaking down the door and arresting Antonio Caia, a leading member of the 'Ndrangheta crime syndicate from the Calabria region in southern Italy.

The 42-year-old had already served 14 years in prison for mafia ties and drug trafficking. After he was released, he started a turf war with a rival clan for control of an area around the port of Gioia Tauro -- a hub for the drugs trade.

"He is a leader of the 'Ndrangheta in the Gioia Tauro region," Lorenzo Falseri, a local commander of the Carabinieri police, told a press conference.

After his release from prison, Caia was badly injured in an assassination attempt but left hospital early wearing a bullet-proof vest and with a group of bodyguards for protection, Italian media reported.

"Caia is a very dangerous representative of the clans in the area of Seminara," local anti-mafia prosecutor Michele Presipino told reporters.

"His arrest is significant in breaking the structure of those clans."

Caia will have to serve out a new sentence of 12 years in prison for mafia ties and extortion.

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