Godfather of Hackney (Also Does A Nice Range Of Loafers)

By Rob Last edited 148 months ago
Godfather of Hackney (Also Does A Nice Range Of Loafers)

Here's a headline you don't see everyday: Mafia don arrested in London.

Believe it or not, Raffaele Caldarelle, a 35-yearo-old who is thought to be the head of the Camorra crime organisation in Naples, owns a shoe shop in Hackney

Caldarelle, who appeared in Westminster Magistrates Court yesterday morning, is facing extradition to Italy where he is wanted for drugs and weapon offences. But according to reports he's not one to go quietly.

Dozens of officers, including some that were armed, arrived to arrest the Italian at his Hackney shoe shop, specialising in Italian footwear, in east London.

But he struggled as they tried to take him into custody, violently lashing out and injuring three officers.

Caldarelle had apparently lived in Hackney, near the shoe shop, for three years but had kept his hand in with the 'family business' via "a sophisticated chain of lieutenants and foot soldiers."

And this isn't an isolated incident. Last year one of Italy's most wanted men, Francesco Tonicello ("a master forger with 11 aliases who fenced priceless artworks, antiques and gold.") was also arrested in London. And where was he working?

At Vauxhall Tube station as a newspaper seller.

It's not like it is in the films is it?

You can read more about the Camorra crime organisation on this Wikipedia page.

Last Updated 08 September 2006