Italian mafia boss who escaped prison by tying bed sheets together arrested during romantic dinner in France

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An Italian mafia boss who escaped from a maximum security prison last year by using bed sheets to scale the walls has been captured in France, authorities say.

Marco Raduano, the 40-year-old boss of the Gargano Mafia in the southern Italian region of Puglia, was caught Thursday outside a luxury restaurant in Bastia, Corsica, where he was dining with a female companion.

He was apprehended by the same anti-mafia unit that captured Matteo Messina Denaro, another criminal boss who spent nearly three decades on the run.

Rauduona was listed as one of Europol’s top 10 most dangerous fugitives.

Also apprehended was his right-hand man, Gianluigi Troiano, who fled house arrest in 2021 after detaching his electronic bracelet. He was arrested on Thursday in Granada, Spain while picking up a parcel from a service point.

The joint operation was ordered by the District Anti-Mafia Directorate of Bari, Puglia and carried out by the Carabinieri of the ROS and the provincial command of Foggia, Puglia. The Spanish Guardia Civil and the French Gendarmerie Nationale also cooperated in the arrest, according to the Carabinieri statement.

Raduano’s escape by tying bed sheets from his prison window just under a year ago was caught on the penitentiary’s surveillance cameras. The escape lasted 16 seconds and he fled on foot with no guards noticing or giving chase, which led to an internal investigation of the maximum security prison.

Raduano was serving a 24-year sentence in prison for drug trafficking when he escaped, and sentenced to life in prison in absentia after his escape for instigating the murder of mobster Omar Trott in a bruschetta bar in Vieste, Italy, in 2017.

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