In over three decades, Italy witnessed its largest mafia trial where 70 members of the Ndrangheta mafia group were jailed, facing charges that included attempted murder and extortion.
A further 355 people have yet to be judged in a trial that’s expected to last two years or longer.
A specially adapted courtroom in the Calabrian city of Lamezia Terme has played host to the “maxi trial” for hundreds of suspects associated with the Ndrangheta mafia group.
Anti-mafia prosecutor Nicola Gratteri, who has been living under police escort for the past 30 years, said the sentencing had gone “very well”.
“Out of 91 defendants, there were 70 presumed innocent who were convicted” while those who were acquitted had been minor players.
Some of the most dangerous members of the group received the maximum sentence of 20 years with about 30% of the group receiving sentences amounting to ten years or more.
The Ndrangheta controls the majority of cocaine that enters Italy and is entrenched in Italy’s poorest region of Calabria.