It's big news in Italy this morning that one of the rising bosses of the Camorra has been captured by the police. The International Herald Tribune has the story in English.
Investigators say the mobster Giuseppe Setola masterminded a terror spree that has bloodied the Caserta area of southern Italy for several months in a power struggle within the Camorra crime syndicate.
With a reputation as a sharpshooting hit-man, Setola, 38, has been convicted of murder and sentenced in absentia to life in prison. He escaped in the spring from house arrest, which was granted so he could recover from a purported eye problem.
Setola "was trying to escape by rooftop, further proof that he sees very well," Carabinieri paramilitary police Col. Carmelo Burgio told Sky TG24 TV.
The Italian police and legal system are known more for their bumbling bureaucracy than for their efficiency. Imagine a convicted murderer faking an eye ailment and getting house arrest out of the deal.
The brutality of Setola's world was dramatically described in the book by Roberto Saviano, which became the film Gomorra. It has received international acclaim as an amazing portrayal of what these Neapolitan gangsters have been getting up to.
What occurred to me, looking at Giuseppe Setola on TV this morning, was how normal he looks. This is not always the case, some of these guys look like the thugs they are, but I saw Setola smiling as the police were escorting him, and not in that lunatic way, but smiling like a regular guy. One quote said that at the moment of his arrest he said to the cops, "All right, you win."
The truth is he and the scores of young men who take orders from him are cold-blooded killers of the first order. How do you think people get like that? Are they born that way? Is it learned in childhood? Is it like James Gandolfini's character said in the great movie, True Romance?
"Now the first time you kill somebody that's the hardest. I don't give a shit if you're funckin' Wyatt Earp or Jack the Ripper..." (his speech starts at 3:40)