Miskito the Future Muslims of Nicaragua

Miskito the Future Muslims of Nicaragua

The Allies of LA Mara Salvatrucha MS 13 Worldwide are:

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” data-medium-file=”” data-large-file=”” class=”alignnone size-full wp-image-333″ src=”https://isisandislaminlatinamerica.files.wordpress.com/2016/06/miskito.png?w=840″ alt=”miskito”>The Miskito are a Native American ethnic group in Central America, of whom many are mixed race. In the northern end of their territory, the people are primarily of African-Native American ancestry; others are of mixed African-Native American and British descent. Their territory extends from Cape Camarón, Honduras, to Río Grande, Nicaragua along the Mosquito Coast, in the Western Caribbean Zone.

History

Before the arrival of Europeans in the region, the area was divided into numerous small, egalitarian indigenous groups, possibly speaking languages related toSumu. The Spanish listed 30 “nations” in Taguzgalpa and Tologalpa provinces, as the Spanish understood their geography. Karl Offen’s analysis of this historic data suggests there were about a half dozen entities, groups who were distinct by their language dialects, who were situated in the river basins.[2]

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The Spanish were unable to conquer this region during the sixteenth century. Much of the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua and northeastern Honduras was outside any Spanish authority. The region became a haven for northern Europeans, especially Dutch and English privateers during the early seventeenth century (for exampleMorgan, Montbars and Dampier).

A number of Africans reached the coast from shipwrecked slave ships, notably one in the mid-seventeenth century.[3] The survivors of shipwrecks, and/or escaped slaves from the Providence Island colony, settled around Cape Gracias a Dios. They intermarried with the indigenous people.

The Spanish referred to their mixed-race descendants as Mosquito Zambos(Mosquito was their transliteration of Miskito). Those Miskito living in the southern (Nicaraguan) region were less racially mixed. Modern scholars have classified them as Tawira Miskito. Rivalries between these two groups and competition for territory often led to wars, which were divisive in the eighteenth century.[4]

British-Miskito alliance

English privateers working through the Providence Island Company made informal alliances with the Miskito. These English began to crown Miskito leaders as kings (or chiefs); their territory was called the Mosquito Kingdom (the English adopted the Spanish term for the indigenous people). A 1699 written account of the kingdom described it as spread out in various communities along the coast but not including all the territory. It probably did not include the settlements of English traders.[5] The king did not have total power. The 1699 description noted that the kings and governors had no power except in war time, even in matters of justice. Otherwise the people were all equal.[6] Their superior leaders were named by the English as the king, a governor, a general and, by the 1750s, an admiral.[7] Historical information on kings is often obscure as many of the kings were semi-mythical.

In the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, the Miskito Zambo began a series of raids attacking Spanish-held territories and the still independent indigenous groups in the area. Miskito raiders reached as far north as the Yucatan, and as far south as Costa Rica. They sold many of their captives as slaves to English merchants, who generally shipped them to Jamaica sugar plantations for work.[8] In addition, from 1720 in Jamaica, the British commissioned the Miskito to captureMaroons in the Blue Mountains, as they could trail people.[9]

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The Miskito king and the British concluded a formal Treaty of Friendship and Alliance in 1740. The British Crown appointed John Hodgson as Superintendent of the Shore.[10] The British established a protectorate over the Miskito Nation, often called the Mosquito Coast (related to the original Spanish name).

The Miskito kingdom aided Britain during the American Revolutionary War by attacking Spanish colonies to draw off their forces. It gained several victories alongside the British. But, at the conclusion of the peace in 1783, Britain had to cede control over the coast to Spain. The British withdrawal was completed at the end of June 1787. To compensate Loyalist supporters, the British re-settled 537 free people, together with their 1,677 slaves, from Mosquitia to the Bay settlement inBritish Honduras, present-day Belize.[11] Despite their official withdrawal, Britain maintained an unofficial protectorate over the kingdom. They often intervened to protect Miskito interests against Spanish encroachments.[12]

Independence Era

In addition to the area’s geographic isolation, the Miskito military capacity and British support allowed the people to retain their independence when Spain controlled the Pacific side of Central America. The Miskito Coast remained independent throughout much of the period of the Federation of Central American States, but Nicaragua finally absorbed the territory in 1894.[13]

Once the Central American republics became independent in the early to mid-nineteenth century, they had less power in relation to other nations than did Spain, and struggled to protect their own territorial interests against the more powerful Great Britain and the United States, which took an increasing strategic interest in the area.

HispanTV is now in Venezuela, Bolivia and Latin America

HispanTV (Spanish: [ispanˈteuβe, ihpanˈteuβe], Persian (patterned from Spanish pronunciation): [ispanˈteube, ispanˈteuve], Persian alphabet: هیسپان‌تی‌وی) is a Spanish language news channel operated by IRIB, Iran‘s state-owned public broadcasting corporation. It began broadcasting in December 2011.[2]

HispanTV’s programming has been distributed in Venezuela, Spain, Argentina, Cuba and other countries worldwide and is intended to reinforce ties between Iran and Latin American states such as Venezuela, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, Nicaragua, and Mexico as well as to counter what the Iranian government sees as unfair coverage in Western media. The channel is similar to Press TV, an English language news channel and Al-Alam an Arabic satellite TV station also owned by the Iranian state, which claim to provide “accurate and unbiased coverage of the world and the Middle East events as they unfold.”[3]

HispanTV has foreign journalists from Spain, Argentina, Mexico, USA, Chile, Nicaragua and Venezuela. It also has journalists from Iran who speak Spanish.

” data-medium-file=”” data-large-file=”” class=”alignnone size-full wp-image-2020″ src=”https://isisandislaminlatinamerica.files.wordpress.com/2016/09/northern_triangle_729-300×169.png?w=840″ alt=”northern_triangle_729-300×169″>Great Britain took an interest in the affairs on the Mosquito Coast, as it had trade positions in Belize/British Honduras and Jamaica. In addition, US trading interests began to develop in the region. British governors in Belize began issuing commissions and appointments to Miskito kings and other officials, such as King Robert Charles Frederick, crowned in Belize in 1825. British officials regularly officially recognized the various Miskito offices; it worked to protect Miskito interests against the Central American republics and against the United States.[14]

The latter protested British interference under the Monroe Doctrine. The United States involvement in war with Mexico prevented it from much support of the republics. As England gradually became less aggressive in its commissioning of Miskito nobility, the people effectively began to operate as an independent state.[14]

Due to British economic interest in Central America (particularly British Honduras, now Belize), they sold guns and other modern weapons to the Miskito. After Nicaragua declared independence in 1821, combined Miskito-Zambo raiders began to attack Honduran settlements. They sometimes rescued enslaved Miskito before transport to Europe. At other times, they conducted raids to enslave Amerindians to sell to the British for work in Jamaica. They also enslaved women from other tribes for use as sexual partners.

Their society allowed polygamy. The Miskito population boomed as the men had more children with their slave women. These raids continued for many years after animosity between Britain and Spain ended at the international level. For a long time, the Miskito considered themselves superior to other indigenous tribes of the area, whom they referred to as “wild”. The Miskito commonly adopted European dress and English names.[citation needed]

In 1847, Moravian Church missionaries came to the Miskito Coast from Herrnhut, Saxony. Working among the Miskito and Creoles, by the end of the century, they had converted almost all of the inhabitants to a Protestant form of Christianity. The Moravian Church missionaries built a hospital and established schools in their settlements.

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From the middle of the nineteenth century, British interest in the region began to wane. At the Treaty of Managua in 1860, Great Britain allowed Nicaragua to have uncontested claim over the Mosquito Coast. The treaty provided for a Miskitu reserve, a self-governing entity that enjoyed semi-sovereign rights. Nicaraguan forces occupied the area in 1894 and took over the state. The British restored the Miskito Reserve in July, but Nicaraguan forces reoccupied in August 1894 and ended its independence.

Various major American fruit companies, which had begun large-scale production of bananas in the Miskito reserve, supported Nicaragua’s takeover of power in the area. The American companies preferred Nicaraguan authority to the Miskito, especially as the Miskito elite was more prepared to protect the rights of small landholders than was the Nicaragua government.[15]

During the 20th century

A family of Miskito people living along the Prinzapolka river in Nicaragua

 

The Miskito who lived in the Jinotega Department, west of the North Caribbean Coast Autonomous Region, were much different from the Miskito who lived along the Caribbean coast. The Miskito in Jinotega were Catholic as a result of Spanish colonial influence, were not allied with the British, and often traded with the Spanish-speaking mestizos from the Pacific coast.

During the conflict in 1927–1933 between Augusto Sandino and the United Statesover the U.S. occupation of Nicaragua, both sides tried to enlist the Miskito in providing food and transport. In 1926, many Miskito in the Jinotega region joined Augusto Sandino and his troops. The Miskito of Jinotega had closer ties with Sandino as well as the FSLN, which organized agricultural cooperatives and built schools and health centers in the area.[16]

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During the 1960s and the 1970s, Nicaragua began to expropriate native-held land for nationalization. During these decades, the mainstream of Nicaraguan national politics recognized the Miskito only when asking them to vote for theNicaraguan National Liberal Party.

In the 1980s, the Sandinista government extended their influence over the region via its Comités de Defensa Sandinista.[17]In response, several Miskito groups formed guerrilla forces, who carried on armed struggle against the central government. On 25 February 1982, Steadman Fagoth, one of the guerrilla leaders, took refuge in Honduras along with 3,000 Miskito,[18] while the Sandinistas began to denounce the activities of Contras in the Río Coco zone.

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(CPDH)> they lived as refugees in a difficult state of exile. In 1983, the government proclaimed a state of emergency in the Río Coco zone, which was maintained until 1988.[19] In 1983 the Misurasata movement, led by Brooklyn Rivera, split. The breakaway Misura group of Stedman Fagoth allied more closely with the Nicaraguan Democratic Force (FDN), one of the first Contra groups commanded by Enrique Bermúdez.

A 1986 documentary called Nicaragua Was Our Home documented the persecution of the Miskito at the hands of the Nicaraguan government. The film features interviews with Miskito Indian people and some non-Miskito clergy who lived among them; they recounted actions of the government against them, including bombing of villages, shootings, and forced removal of people from their homes.[20] The film was shown on some PBS stations[21][22] and at the 1986 Sundance Film Festival.[23]

In September 1987 the Nicaraguan legislature passed a statute providing autonomy to the Miskito. This essentially defused Miskito resistance.

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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<td class="mbox-text"><span class="mbox-text-span">This article <b>needs additional citations for <a title="Wikipedia:Verifiability" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Verifiability">verification</a></b&gt;. <span class="hide-when-compact">Please help <a class="external text" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Organized_crime_in_Italy&action=edit">improve this article</a> by <a title="Help:Introduction to referencing with Wiki Markup/1" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Help:Introduction_to_referencing_with_Wiki_Markup/1">adding citations to reliable sources</a>. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.</span> <small><i>(October 2007)</i></small> <small class="hide-when-compact"><i>(<a title="Help:Maintenance template removal" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Help:Maintenance_template_removal">Learn how and when to remove this template message</a>)</i></small></span></td>
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<caption>Organized crime in Italy</caption>
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<th scope="row">Founded</th>
<td>1800s<sup id="cite_ref-fbi_1-0" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-fbi-1">%5B1%5D</a></sup></td&gt;
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<th scope="row">Membership</th>
<td>25,000 members 250,000 affiliates<sup id="cite_ref-fbi_1-1" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-fbi-1">%5B1%5D</a></sup></td&gt;
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Incidence of organized crime’s extortion by province in Italy

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<p>Since first becoming well known in the 18th century, <b>organized crime in Italy</b> and its criminal organizations have infiltrated the social and economic life of many regions, particularly in <a title="Southern Italy" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_Italy">Southern Italy</a>.</p>
<p>Five major mafia-like organizations are known to exist in Italy: <a class="mw-redirect" title="Cosa Nostra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosa_Nostra">Cosa Nostra</a> (or the <a title="Sicilian Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicilian_Mafia">Sicilian Mafia</a>) of <a title="Sicily" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicily">Sicily</a&gt;; <a title="’Ndrangheta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%27Ndrangheta">‘Ndrangheta</a&gt; of <a title="Calabria" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calabria">Calabria</a&gt; (who are considered to be among the biggest <a title="Cocaine" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cocaine">cocaine</a&gt; smugglers in Europe); and <a title="Camorra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camorra">Camorra</a&gt; of <a title="Naples" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naples">Naples</a&gt;, are the oldest and most powerful of the five, having started to develop between 1500 and 1800. In the 20th century, two new criminal organizations, <a title="Stidda" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stidda">Stidda</a&gt; of Sicily and <a title="Sacra Corona Unita" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacra_Corona_Unita">Sacra Corona Unita</a> of <a title="Apulia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apulia">Apulia</a&gt;, were created. Two other Italian organized crime groups, the <a title="Banda della Magliana" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banda_della_Magliana">Banda della Magliana</a> of <a title="Rome" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rome">Rome</a&gt; and <a title="Mala del Brenta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mala_del_Brenta">Mala del Brenta</a> of <a title="Veneto" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veneto">Veneto</a&gt;, held considerable influence during their heights of power but are now largely defunct or inactive. The latest creation of Italian organized crime (IOC), <a class="mw-redirect" title="Mafia Capitale" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mafia_Capitale">Mafia Capitale</a>, has recently been disbanded by the police.<sup id="cite_ref-Rai_-_Radiotelevisione_Italiana_2-0" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-Rai_-_Radiotelevisione_Italiana-2">%5B2%5D</a></sup></p&gt;
<p>The most notorious Italian organized crime group is the Mafia or <a title="Sicilian Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicilian_Mafia">Sicilian Mafia</a> (referred to as <i><a class="mw-redirect" title="Cosa Nostra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosa_Nostra">Cosa Nostra</a></i> by members). As the original “Mafia”, the Sicilian Mafia is the basis for the current colloquial usage of the term “<a title="Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mafia">mafia</a>” to refer to organized crime groups. The Mafia or Sicilian Mafia notably expanded into some foreign countries, especially the <a title="United States" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States">United States</a>, where Sicilian mafiosi eventually joined together with <a title="Naples" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naples">Neapolitan</a&gt; criminal groups in the U.S. and other <a class="mw-redirect" title="Italian-American" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian-American">Italian-American</a&gt; and <a title="Italian diaspora" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_diaspora">Italian immigrant</a> criminal groups to form the modern <a class="mw-redirect" title="Italian-American Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian-American_Mafia">Italian-American Mafia</a> (or simply the “American” Mafia.) Though less well-known, the Neapolitan Camorra, Calabrian ‘Ndrangheta, and offshoots of both these groups have also operated or set down roots in foreign countries, including the United States, <a title="Canada" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada">Canada</a&gt;, <a title="Australia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia">Australia</a&gt;, <a title="Germany" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germany">Germany</a&gt;, <a title="Latin America" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latin_America">Latin America</a>, and <a title="Great Britain" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Britain">Great Britain</a>.</p>
<p><span id="Sicilian_Mafia_.28Cosa_Nostra.29" class="mw-headline">Sicilian Mafia (Cosa Nostra)</span></p>

Main article: Sicilian Mafia

<p>Based primarily in <a title="Sicily" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicily">Sicily</a&gt;, the <a title="Sicilian Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicilian_Mafia">Sicilian Mafia</a> formed in the mid-19th century by clans which sprang out of groups of bandits; these groups gained local power and influence.<sup class="noprint Inline-Template Template-Fact">[<i><a title="Wikipedia:Citation needed" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citation_needed"><span title="This claim needs references to reliable sources. (October 2007)">citation needed</span></a></i>]</sup> In <a title="Sicily" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicily">Sicily</a&gt;, the word <i>mafia</i> tends to mean “manly” and a Mafioso considers himself a “Man of Honor.” However, the organization is known as “<a class="mw-redirect" title="Cosa Nostra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosa_Nostra">Cosa Nostra</a>“—Our Thing—or Our Affair. The Sicilian Mafia originally engaged in such lower-level activities as extortion, cattle theft and, upon Sicily becoming part of a democratic Italy, election slugging in addition to other kinds of relatively low-level theft and fraud.<sup class="noprint Inline-Template Template-Fact">[<i><a title="Wikipedia:Citation needed" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citation_needed"><span title="This claim needs references to reliable sources. (October 2007)">citation needed</span></a></i>]</sup></p>
<p>In the 1950s, <a title="Sicily" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicily">Sicily</a&gt; experienced a massive building boom. Taking advantage of the opportunity, the Sicilian Mafia gained control of the building contracts and made millions of dollars.<sup class="noprint Inline-Template Template-Fact">[<i><a title="Wikipedia:Citation needed" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citation_needed"><span title="This claim needs references to reliable sources. (October 2007)">citation needed</span></a></i>]</sup> It participated in the growing business of large-scale heroin trafficking, both in Italy and Europe and in US-connected trafficking; a famous example of this are the <a title="French Connection" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Connection">French Connection</a> smuggling with Corsican criminals and the Italian-American Mafia.</p>
<p>Today, the Sicilian Mafia has evolved into an international <a title="Organized crime" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime">organized crime</a> group. The Sicilian Mafia specializes in heroin trafficking, political corruption and military arms trafficking and is the most powerful and most active <a class="mw-redirect" title="Italian people" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_people">Italian</a&gt; <a class="mw-redirect" title="Organized Crime" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_Crime">Organized Crime</a> Group in the <a title="United States" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States">United States</a> with estimates of more than 2,500 Sicilian Mafia affiliates located there.<sup id="cite_ref-fbi_1-2" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-fbi-1">%5B1%5D</a></sup&gt; The Sicilian Mafia is also known to engage in arson, frauds, counterfeiting, and other racketeering crimes. It is estimated to have 3,500–4,000 core members with 100 clans, with around 50 in the city of Palermo alone.<sup id="cite_ref-3" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-3">%5B3%5D</a></sup></p&gt;
<p>The Sicilian Mafia has had influence in ‘legitimate’ power, particularly under the corrupt Christian Democratic governments from the 1950s to the early 1990s. It has had influence with lawyers, financiers, and professionals; also it has had power and resources by bribing or pressuring politicians, judges and administrators. It has less of these now than previously on the heels of the <a class="mw-redirect" title="Maxi-Trials" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maxi-Trials">Maxi-Trials</a&gt;, the campaign by magistrates <a title="Giovanni Falcone" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giovanni_Falcone">Giovanni Falcone</a> and <a title="Paolo Borsellino" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paolo_Borsellino">Paolo Borsellino</a> and other actions against corrupt politicians and judges; however it retains some influence.</p>
<p>The Sicilian Mafia became infamous for aggressive assaults on <a title="Italy" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italy">Italian</a&gt; law enforcement officials during the reign of Toto Riina. In <a title="Sicily" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicily">Sicily</a&gt; the term “Excellent Cadaver” is used to distinguish the assassination of prominent government officials from the common criminals and ordinary citizens killed by the Mafia. Some of their high ranking victims include police commissioners, mayors, judges, police colonels and generals, and Parliament members.</p>
<p>On May 23, 1992, the Sicilian Mafia struck <a title="Italy" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italy">Italian</a&gt; law enforcement. At approximately 6:00 p.m., <a class="mw-redirect" title="Italian people" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_people">Italian</a&gt; Magistrate <a title="Giovanni Falcone" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giovanni_Falcone">Giovanni Falcone</a>, his wife, and three police body guards were killed by a massive bomb. Falcone, Director of Prosecutions (roughly, District Attorney) and for the court of <a title="Palermo" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palermo">Palermo</a&gt; and head of the special anti-Mafia investigative squad, had become the organization’s most formidable enemy. His team was moving to prepare cases against most of the Mafia leadership. The bomb made a crater 30 feet in diameter in the road Falcone’s caravan was traveling.</p>
<p>This became known as the Capaci Massacre. Less than two months later, on July 19, 1992, the Mafia struck Falcone’s replacement, Judge <a title="Paolo Borsellino" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paolo_Borsellino">Paolo Borsellino</a>, also in <a title="Palermo" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palermo">Palermo</a&gt;, <a title="Sicily" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicily">Sicily</a&gt;. Borsellino and five bodyguards were killed outside the apartment of Borsellino’s mother when a car packed with explosives was detonated by remote control as the judge approached the front door of his mother’s apartment.</p>
<p>In 1993 the authorities arrested <a title="Salvatore Riina" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvatore_Riina">Salvatore “Totó” Riina</a>, believed at the time to be the <a title="Capo di tutti capi" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capo_di_tutti_capi">Capo di tutti capi</a> and responsible directly or indirectly for scores if not hundreds of killings, after years of investigation which some believe was delayed by Mafia influence within the police and <a title="Carabinieri" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carabinieri">Carabinieri</a&gt;. After Riina’s arrest control of the organization fell to <a title="Bernardo Provenzano" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernardo_Provenzano">Bernardo Provenzano</a> who had come to reject Riina’s strategy of war against the authorities in favor of a strategy of bribery, corruption and influence-peddling. As a consequence the rate of Mafia killings fell sharply but Mafia influence not only in the international drug and white slavery (prostitution) trade but locally in construction and public contracts in Sicily continued. Provenzano was himself captured in 2006 after being wanted for 43 years.</p>
<p>In July, 2013, the Italian police conducted sweeping raids targeting top mafia crime bosses. In Ostia, a coastal community near the capital, police arrested 51 suspects for alleged crimes connected with Italy’s <a title="Sicilian Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicilian_Mafia">Sicilian Mafia</a>. Allegations included extortion, murder, international drug trafficking and illegal control of the slot machine market.<sup id="cite_ref-4" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-4">%5B4%5D</a></sup></p&gt;
<h3><span id="Stidda_or_La_Stidda" class="mw-headline"><a title="Stidda" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stidda">Stidda</a&gt; or La Stidda</span></h3>

<p>La Stidda (Sicilian, <i>star</i>) is the name given to the Sicilian organization started by criminals Giuseppe Croce Benvento and Salvatore Calafato, both of Palmi di Montechiaro, Agrigento province. The Stidda’s power bases are centered in the cities of Gela and Favara, Caltanissetta and Agrigento provinces. The organization’s groups and activities have flourished in the cities of Agrigento, Catania, Siracusa and Enna in the provinces of the same name, Niscemi and Riesi of Caltanissetta province and Vittoria of Ragusa province, located mainly on the Southern and Eastern coasts of Sicily.</p>
<p>The Stidda has extended its power and influence into the mainland Italy provinces of Milano, Genova and Torino. The members of the organization are called <i>stiddari</i> in Caltanissetta province and <i>stiddaroli</i> in Agrigento province. Stidda members can be identified and sometimes introduced to each other by a tattoo of five greenish marks arranged in a circle, forming a star called “i punti della malavita” or “the points of the criminal life.”</p>
<p>The Cosa Nostra wars of the late 1970s and early 1980s that brought the Corleonesi Clan and its vicious and ruthless leaders Luciano Leggio, Toto Riina and Bernardo Provenzano sometimes referred to as “Cosa Nuova” into power caused disorganization and disenchantment inside the traditional Cosa Nostra power base and values system, leaving the growing Stidda organization to counter Cosa Nostra’s power, influence and expansion in Southern and Eastern Sicily. The Stidda membership was reinforced by Cosa Nostra <i>men of honor</i> such as those loyal to slain Capo Giuseppe DiCristina of Riesi who had defected from Cosa Nostra’s ranks due to the bloodthirsty reign of the Corleonesi clan.</p>
<p>The organization also looked to enlarge its membership by absorbing local thugs and criminals (picciotti) who were at the margins of organized crime to gain more power and credibility in the Italian underworld. From 1978 to 1990, former Corleonesi clan leader and pretender to the Cosa Nostra’s “Capo di Tutti Capi” title, Toto Riina, waged a war within Cosa Nostra and against the Stidda spreading death and terror among mafiosi and the public in his quest for a crime dictatorship, leaving over 500 in Cosa Nostra and over 1000 in La Stidda dead, including Stidda Capos Calogero Lauria and Vincenzo Spina.</p>
<p>With the 1993 capture and imprisonment of Totò Riina, along with the currently jailed Bernardo Provenzano’s, “pax mafia,” following a new, less violent and low-key approach to criminal activities the Stidda has gained power, influence and credibility among the longer established criminal organizations within Italy and around the world, making itself an underworld player in the United States, Canada and Germany. The Stidda is sometimes called the “Fifth Mafia” in the Italian media and press.</p>
<h2><span id="Camorra_or_Campanian_Mafia" class="mw-headline"><a title="Camorra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camorra">Camorra</a&gt; or Campanian Mafia</span></h2>
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<p>The word “Camorra” means gang. The Camorra first appeared in the mid-1800s in Naples, Campania, Italy, as a prison gang. Once released, members formed gangs in the cities and continued to grow in power. The Camorra has more than 115 gangs with about 500 members each, for a total of about 57,500.<sup id="cite_ref-econ_5-0" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-econ-5">%5B5%5D</a></sup&gt; The Camorra made its fortune in reconstruction after a powerful earthquake ravaged the Campania region in 1980.<sup id="cite_ref-fbi_1-3" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-fbi-1">%5B1%5D</a></sup></p&gt;
<p>The Camorra also specializes in <a class="mw-redirect" title="Cigarette smuggling" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cigarette_smuggling">cigarette smuggling</a> and receives payoffs from other criminal groups for any cigarette traffic through <a title="Italy" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italy">Italy</a&gt;. In the 1970s, the Sicilian Mafia convinced the Camorra to convert the cigarette smuggling routes into drug smuggling routes with the Sicilian [Mafia’s assistance but not all Camorra leaders agreed. This brought about the Camorra Wars between two factions and almost 400 men were murdered. Those opposed to drug trafficking lost the war.</p>
<p>The Camorra controls the drug trade in Europe, and is organized by management principles. It runs the largest open-air market in the world in <a title="Secondigliano" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secondigliano">Secondigliano</a&gt; in Naples. The gangs themselves are loosely controlled franchises. The former leader, <a title="Paolo Di Lauro" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paolo_Di_Lauro">Paolo Di Lauro</a>, who designed the system has been imprisoned since 2005. The organization produced about €200 million (about $250 million) annually. They inspired the current Italian television series <a title="Gomorrah (TV series)" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gomorrah_%28TV_series%29">Gomorrah</a&gt;.<sup id="cite_ref-econ_5-1" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-econ-5">%5B5%5D</a></sup></p&gt;
<p>It is believed that nearly 200 Camorra affiliates reside in the United States. Many came to the US during the Camorra Wars ever since the 19th century, as proved by an old organization best known as <a title="Black Hand (extortion)" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Hand_%28extortion%29">Black Hand</a>. The Camorra conducts money laundering, extortion, alien smuggling, robbery, blackmail, kidnapping, political corruption, and counterfeiting.</p>
<h2><span id=".27Ndrangheta_or_Calabrian_Mafia" class="mw-headline"><a title="’Ndrangheta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%27Ndrangheta">‘Ndrangheta</a&gt; or Calabrian Mafia</span></h2>

Main article: ‘Ndrangheta

<p>Derived from the Greek word <i>andragathía</i> meaning courage or loyalty, the ‘Ndrangheta formed in the 1850s. The ‘Ndrangheta consists of 160 cells and approximately 6,000 members, worldwide some estimate there to be as many as 10,000 core members<sup id="cite_ref-johnhooper_6-0" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-johnhooper-6">%5B6%5D</a></sup&gt; and specializes in kidnapping and political corruption. The ‘Ndrangheta cells are loosely connected family groups based on blood relationships and marriages. ‘Ndrangheta presence in the United States is estimated between 100 and 200 members and associates. The majority of that presence is in <a class="mw-redirect" title="New York (state)" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_%28state%29">New York</a> and <a title="Florida" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida">Florida</a&gt;. The ‘Ndrangheta is also known to engage in cocaine (controlling up to 80% of that flowing through Europe)<sup id="cite_ref-johnhooper_6-1" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-johnhooper-6">%5B6%5D</a></sup&gt; and heroin trafficking, murder, bombings, counterfeiting, illegal gambling, frauds, thefts, labor racketeering, loansharking, illegal immigration, and kidnapping.</p>
<h2><span id="Basilischi_.28Basilicatan_Mafia.29" class="mw-headline"><a class="new" title="Basilischi (page does not exist)" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Basilischi&action=edit&redlink=1">Basilischi</a&gt; (Basilicatan Mafia)</span></h2>

Main article: Basilischi

<p>The Basilischi are a mafia organization founded in 1994 in <a title="Potenza" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Potenza">Potenza</a&gt;. It’s sometimes called Italy’s fifth mafia.<sup id="cite_ref-7" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-7">%5B7%5D</a></sup&gt; This organization has assumed a role for the control of illegal activities in the region. They are believed to be an independently run ‘ndrina from the Rosarno Alliance involving 5 clans of in the provinces of Reggio Calabria and Gioia Tauro plain. Not a lot is known of them.</p>
<p>There is another belief that this group was created by local crime bosses and criminals with the help of the Pesce and Serraino ‘Ndrangheta clans from <a title="Rosarno" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosarno">Rosarno</a&gt; in the northern and western areas of the region of Calabria and so would be smuggling drugs and arms through Italy into the rest of Italy for these Clans.<sup class="noprint Inline-Template Template-Fact">[<i><a title="Wikipedia:Citation needed" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citation_needed"><span title="This claim needs references to reliable sources. (May 2010)">citation needed</span></a></i>]</sup></p>
<h2><span id="Sacra_Corona_Unita_.28Apulian_Mafia.29" class="mw-headline"><a title="Sacra Corona Unita" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacra_Corona_Unita">Sacra Corona Unita</a> (Apulian Mafia)</span></h2>

Main article: Sacra Corona Unita

<p>Sacra Corona Unita (SCU), or United Sacred Crown, is a Mafia-like criminal organization from the region of <a title="Apulia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apulia">Apulia</a&gt; (in Italian <i>Puglia</i>) in Southern Italy, and is especially active in the areas of Brindisi and Lecce and not, as people tend to believe, in the region as a whole. The SCU was originally founded in the late 1970s as the Nuova Grande Camorra Pugliese, based in <a title="Foggia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foggia">Foggia</a&gt;, by the Camorra member Raffaele Cutolo, who wanted to expand his operations into Apulia. It has also been suggested that elements of this group originated from the ‘Ndrangheta, but it is not know if they were breakaways from it or the result of indirect co-operation with clans of the ‘Ndrangheta.</p>
<p>A few years after the creation of the SCU, following the downfall of Cutolo, the organization began to operate independently from the Camorra under the leadership of <a class="new" title="Giuseppe Rogoli (page does not exist)" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Giuseppe_Rogoli&action=edit&redlink=1">Giuseppe Rogoli</a>. Under his leadership the SCU mixed its Apulian interests and opportunities with ‘Ndrangheta and Camorra traditions. Originally preying on the region’s substantial wine and olive oil industries, the group moved into fraud, gunrunning, and drug trafficking, and made alliances with international criminal organizations such as the Russian and Albanian mafias, the Colombian drug cartels, and some Asian organizations. The Sacra Corona Unita consists of about 50 Clans with approximately 2,000 Core members<sup id="cite_ref-fbi_1-4" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-fbi-1">%5B1%5D</a></sup&gt; and specializes in smuggling cigarettes, drugs, arms, and people.</p>
<p>Very few SCU members have been identified in the United States, however there are some links to individuals in Illinois, Florida, and possibly New York. The Sacra Corona Unita is also reported to be involved in money laundering, extortion, and political corruption and collects payoffs from other criminal groups for landing rights on the southeast coast of Italy. This territory is a natural gateway for smuggling to and from post-Communist countries like <a title="Croatia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Croatia">Croatia</a&gt;, <a title="Montenegro" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montenegro">Montenegro</a&gt;, and <a title="Albania" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albania">Albania</a&gt;.</p>
<p>With the decreasing importance of the Adriatic corridor as a smuggling route (thanks to the normalization of the Balkans area) and a series of successful police and judicial operations against it in recent years, the Sacra Corona Unita has been considered, if not actually defeated, to be reduced to a fraction of its former power, which peaked around the mid-1990s.</p>
<p><b>Local Rivals</b><br />
The internal difficulties of the SCU aided the birth of antagonistic criminal groups such as:</p>
<ul>
<li>Remo Lecce Libera: formed by some leading criminal figures from Lecce, who claim to be independent from any criminal group other than the ‘Ndrangheta. The term Remo indicates Remo Morello, a criminal from the Salento area, killed by criminals from the Campania region because he opposed any external interference;</li>
<li>Nuova Famiglia Salentina: formed in 1986 by De Matteis Pantaleo, from Lecce and stemming from the Famiglia Salentina Libera born in the early 1980s as an autonomous criminal movement in the Salento area with no links with extra-regional Mafia expressions</li>
<li>Rosa dei Venti: formed in 1990 by De Tommasi in the Lecce prison, following an internal division in the SCU.<sup id="cite_ref-8" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-8">%5B8%5D</a></sup></li&gt;
</ul>
<h2><span id="Mala_del_Brenta" class="mw-headline"><a title="Mala del Brenta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mala_del_Brenta">Mala del Brenta</a></span></h2>

Main article: Mala del Brenta

<p>The <b><a title="Mala del Brenta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mala_del_Brenta">Mala del Brenta</a></b>, also known as the <i>Mala del Piovese</i> or <i>Malavita del Brenta</i> was in operation throughout the <a title="Veneto" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veneto">Veneto</a&gt; region, across Northern <a title="Italy" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italy">Italy</a&gt; and into <a title="Croatia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Croatia">Croatia</a>/<a title="Yugoslavia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yugoslavia">Yugoslavia</a&gt;, <a title="Malta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malta">Malta</a&gt;, <a title="Hungary" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hungary">Hungary</a&gt; and possibly <a title="Austria" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Austria">Austria</a&gt; in the 1970s and 1980s.</p>
<p>There is a debate if this organization shall be considered a mafia-like organization, even if, according to <i>Article 416-bis cp</i>, introduced into Italy in 1982, it falls into the category of mafia-type organization displaying some of the characteristics described therein.<sup id="cite_ref-9" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-9">%5B9%5D</a></sup&gt; This is in spite of its origins in the Northern Italian region of the Veneto, and its North Italian membership base. Having originally spawned from the Southern Italian organized crime syndicates, who had operated and infiltrated the Veneto region during the 1970s, their vision of unifying Veneto banditry into a mafia-style syndicate was first realised under the leadership of <b><a title="Felice Maniero" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Felice_Maniero">Felice “Angel Face” Maniero</a></b> throughout the 1980s and 1990s.</p>
<p>These original Sicilian mafiosi, controlled much of the mafia activity in the Veneto, throughout the 1960s and 1970s, and included most notably: Salvatore “Totuccio” Contorno, Gaetano Fidanzati, Antonino Duca, Gaetano and Salvatore Badalamenti, and Giuseppe Madonia. Veneti <i>malavitosi</i>, or underworld figures and bandits, learned from these Sicilians the necessary means for organizing themselves and taking the reins of control from the successive two decades.</p>
<p>Sometimes referred to as the fifth and smallest of the Mafia organizations across Italy during its existence, it operated under the sanction of the Corleonesi clan from Sicily and had strong links with other mafia families, such as <a class="mw-redirect" title="Cosa Nostra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosa_Nostra">Cosa Nostra</a>, <a title="’Ndrangheta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%27Ndrangheta">‘Ndrangheta</a&gt;, <a title="Camorra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camorra">Camorra</a&gt; and <a title="Sacra Corona Unita" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacra_Corona_Unita">Sacra Corona Unita</a>.</p>
<h2><span id="Banda_della_Magliana" class="mw-headline"><a title="Banda della Magliana" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banda_della_Magliana">Banda della Magliana</a></span></h2>

Main article: Banda della Magliana

<p>The Banda della Magliana (English translation: Magliana Gang) was an Italian criminal organization based in <a title="Rome" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rome">Rome</a&gt; and active mostly throughout the late 1970s until the early 1990s. The gang’s name refers to the neighborhood in Rome, the <a title="Magliana" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magliana">Magliana</a&gt;, from which most of its members came. The Banda della Magliana was involved in criminal activities during the Italian “<a title="Years of Lead (Italy)" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Years_of_Lead_%28Italy%29">years of lead</a>” (or <i>anni di piombo</i>). The organization was tied to other Italian criminal organizations such as the Cosa Nostra, Camorra and the ‘Ndrangheta, but it was also notably connected to <a class="mw-redirect" title="Neofascist" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neofascist">neofascist</a&gt; <a title="Paramilitary" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paramilitary">paramilitary</a&gt; and <a class="mw-redirect" title="Terrorist" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terrorist">terrorist</a&gt; organizations, including the <a title="Nuclei Armati Rivoluzionari" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclei_Armati_Rivoluzionari">Nuclei Armati Rivoluzionari</a> (NAR), the neofascist group responsible for the <a class="mw-redirect" title="1980 Bologna massacre" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1980_Bologna_massacre">1980 Bologna massacre</a>. In addition to their involvement in traditional organized crime rackets, the Banda della Magliana is also believed to have worked for the Italian secret services (<a title="SISMI" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SISMI">SISMI</a&gt;) and political figures such as <a title="Licio Gelli" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Licio_Gelli">Licio Gelli</a>, grand-master of the illegal and underground <a class="mw-redirect" title="Freemason" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freemason">freemason</a&gt; lodge known as <a title="Propaganda Due" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_Due">Propaganda Due</a> (P2), all of which were purportedly connected to neofascist and far-right militant paramilitary groups.</p>
<h2><span id="Mafia_Capitale" class="mw-headline"><a class="mw-redirect" title="Mafia Capitale" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mafia_Capitale">Mafia Capitale</a></span></h2>

Main article: Mafia Capitale

<p>The <b>Mafia Capitale</b> was an <a title="Italy" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italy">Italian</a&gt; Mafia-type, <a title="Organized crime" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime">crime syndicate</a>, or <a title="Secret society" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secret_society">secret society</a>, that originated in the region of <a title="Lazio" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lazio">Lazio</a&gt; and its capital <a title="Rome" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rome">Rome</a&gt;.<sup id="cite_ref-Rai_-_Radiotelevisione_Italiana_2-1" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-Rai_-_Radiotelevisione_Italiana-2">%5B2%5D</a></sup&gt; Founded in early 2000s by <b><a title="Massimo Carminati" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massimo_Carminati">Massimo Carminati</a></b> on the ashes of <a title="Banda della Magliana" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banda_della_Magliana">Banda della Magliana</a>.<sup id="cite_ref-10" class="reference"><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organized_crime_in_Italy#cite_note-10">%5B10%5D</a></sup></p&gt;
<h2><span id="Italian_crime_in_U.S._and_other_foreign_countries" class="mw-headline">Italian crime in U.S. and other foreign countries</span></h2>
<p>Those currently active in the United States are the <a title="Sicilian Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicilian_Mafia">Sicilian Mafia</a>, <a title="Camorra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camorra">Camorra</a&gt; or Neapolitan Mafia, <a title="’Ndrangheta" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%27Ndrangheta">‘Ndrangheta</a&gt; or Calabrian Mafia, and <a class="mw-redirect" title="Sacra corona unita" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacra_corona_unita">Sacra Corona Unita</a> or “United Sacred Crown”. The FBI refers to them as “Italian Organized Crime” (IOC). These Italian crime groups frequently collaborate with the <a class="mw-redirect" title="Italian-American Mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian-American_Mafia">Italian-American Mafia</a>, which is itself an offshoot of the Sicilian Mafia and, to a lesser extent, the <a title="Camorra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camorra">Camorra</a&gt;.</p>
<p>The Sicilian Mafia first gained footing in the United States following <a title="Italian diaspora" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_diaspora">waves of immigration from Southern Italy</a> into the United States. In the past, the Camorra also operated on a larger scale in the United States, forming the <a class="mw-redirect" title="New York Camorra" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_Camorra">New York Camorra</a>, which warred with the Sicilian Mafia in the United States and eventually became absorbed into the United States Sicilian Mafia to form what is now known as the American or Italian-American Mafia. Though many of the first Italian criminal groups in the U.S. combined to create the Italian-American Mafia, more recent members of the Sicilian Mafia, Camorra, and ‘Ndrangheta continue to semi-independently operate in the U.S. or collaborate with the Italian-American Mafia.</p>
<p>The FBI estimates the size of the four IOC groups to be approximately 25,000 members and 250,000 affiliates worldwide. There are more than 3,000 members and affiliates in the United States scattered mostly throughout the major cities in the Northeast, the Midwest, <a title="California" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California">California</a&gt;, and the South. However, their largest presence centers around <a title="Boston" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boston">Boston</a&gt;, New York, northern <a title="New Jersey" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Jersey">New Jersey</a>, and <a title="Philadelphia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philadelphia">Philadelphia</a&gt;. Their criminal activities are international with members and affiliates in Canada, South America, Australia, and parts of Europe. These organizations are also known to collaborate with other international organized crime groups from all over the world.</p>
<p>The Italian gangs (especially the Sicilian Mafia) have also connections with the <a title="Corsican mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corsican_mafia">Corsican gangs</a>. This collaboration were mostly important during the <a title="French Connection" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Connection">French Connection</a> era. During the 1990s the links between the <a title="Corsican mafia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corsican_mafia">Corsican Mafia</a> and the Sicilian Mafia permitted an establishment of some Sicilian gangsters in the <a title="Lavezzi Islands" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lavezzi_Islands">Lavezzi Islands</a>.</p>
<p>The major threat to American society posed by IOC groups centers around drug trafficking and money laundering. IOC groups have been involved in heroin trafficking for decades. Two major investigations which targeted IOC drug trafficking in the 1980s are known as the “French Connection” and “Pizza Connection.” These and other investigations have documented their cooperation in drug trafficking with other major drug trafficking organizations. IOC groups are also involved in illegal gambling, political corruption, extortion, kidnapping, frauds, counterfeiting, infiltration of legitimate businesses, murders, bombings, and weapons trafficking. Industry experts in Italy estimate that their worldwide criminal activity is worth more than $100 billion annually.</p>
<p>Outside of the United States, Italy, and <a title="Southern France" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_France">Southern France</a>, IOC groups have also established strongholds in <a title="Canada" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada">Canada</a&gt; (i.e. <a title="Rizzuto crime family" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rizzuto_crime_family">Rizzuto crime family</a>, <a title="Musitano crime family" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Musitano_crime_family">Musitano crime family</a>, <a title="Cotroni crime family" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cotroni_crime_family">Cotroni crime family</a>, <a title="Commisso ‘ndrina" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commisso_%27ndrina">Commisso ‘ndrina</a>, <a title="Siderno Group" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siderno_Group">Siderno Group</a>); <a title="Australia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia">Australia</a&gt; (i.e. Siderno Group, <a title="The Carlton Crew" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Carlton_Crew">The Carlton Crew</a>, <a title="Honoured Society (Australia)" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honoured_Society_%28Australia%29">Honoured Society</a>, <a title="Barbaro ‘ndrina" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbaro_%27ndrina">Barbaro ‘ndrina</a>); and <a title="Germany" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germany">Germany</a&gt; (see <a class="mw-redirect" title="Duisburg massacre" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duisburg_massacre">Duisburg massacre</a>). Italian organized crime groups also operate to varying extents throughout <a title="Western Europe" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_Europe">Western Europe</a>, including the <a title="United Kingdom" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom">United Kingdom</a>. In the U.K. in particular, historically influential but now defunct Italian organized crime gangs operating in Great Britain included the <a class="mw-redirect" title="Sabini gang" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabini_gang">Sabini gang</a> and <a title="Cortesi brothers" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cortesi_brothers">Cortesi brothers</a>.</p>
<p>Italian organized crime groups have also carved out turf or formed close ties with local organized crime group in <a class="mw-redirect" title="Latin American" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latin_American">Latin American</a> countries such as <a title="Colombia" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colombia">Colombia</a&gt; and <a title="Venezuela" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venezuela">Venezuela</a&gt; (where the <a title="Cuntrera-Caruana Mafia clan" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuntrera-Caruana_Mafia_clan">Cuntrera-Caruana Mafia clan</a> in particular has a significant presence.)</p>
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In 1990 the Sandinistas were defeated in the elections. The Miskitos signed an agreement with the newly appointed Minister of the Interior, Carlos Hurtado, to create “security zones,” prepare the return of the national police forces to the region, and integrate 50 Miskito into the police force.

Brooklyn Rivera, one of the Miskito guerrilla leaders, became the director of the INDERA (Nicaraguan Institute of Development of Autonomous Regions), an illegal structure under the 1987 law on autonomy.[24] The government suppressed the INDERA a few years later, allegedly because of conflict between the Miskito and other native groups[25]

In 1998, Hurricane Mitch heavily damaged coastal regions where the Miskito live. On 4 September 2007, Category 5Hurricane Felix with peak sustained winds of 160 mph struck the coast near Punta Gorda, Nicaragua. Damage and death toll estimates are around 100 at this time but are likely to be higher.[26]

Declaration of Independence

In April 2009 the Miskito announced a unilateral declaration of independence from Nicaragua under the name Community Nation of Moskitia[27] (The Today (BBC Radio 4) feature on this included a rendering of their “National Anthem”, which shares its tune with Patriots of Micronesia, etc.). This declaration has not been met with any formal response from the government of Nicaragua nor has it been recognised by any other state. The independence movement is led by Hector Williams, who is described as the leader of the Miskito and uses the title Wihta Tara, or Great Judge. They cited as reasons for their renewed desire for independence the serious economic problems damaging their traditional fishing industry and the recent election of Daniel Ortega as president of Nicaragua. Many of them had fought as Contras against him during the Nicaraguan Civil War and still opposed him.

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