At Italy On This Day you will read about events and festivals, about important moments in history, and about the people who have made Italy the country it is today, and where they came from. Italy is a country rich in art and music, fashion and design, food and wine, sporting achievement and political diversity. Italy On This Day provides fascinating insights to help you enjoy it all the more.

16 September 2019

16 September

Paolo di Lauro - Camorra boss


Capture of mobster struck at heart of Naples underworld

Italy's war against organised crime achieved one of its biggest victories on this day in 2005 when the powerful Camorra boss Paolo di Lauro was arrested.  In a 6am raid, Carabinieri officers surrounded a building in the notorious Secondigliano district of Naples and entered the modest apartment in which Di Lauro was living with a female companion.  The 52-year-old gang boss did not resist arrest, possibly believing any charges against him would not be made to stick.  However, at a subsequent trial he was convicted and sentenced to 30 years' imprisonment for drug trafficking and other crimes and remains in jail.  Di Lauro's conviction was significant because it removed the man who had been at the head of one of the most lucrative criminal networks in all of Italy for more than 20 years and yet managed to maintain such a low profile that police at times suspected he was dead.  At its peak, the Di Lauro clan presided over an organisation that imported and distributed cocaine and heroin said to be worth around €200 million per year.  The clan essentially controlled the run-down northern suburbs of Naples, making money also from real estate, counterfeit high-end fashion and prostitution.  Read more…


________________________________________________________________

Alessandro Fortis - politician


Revolutionary who became Prime Minister

Alessandro Fortis, a controversial politician who was also Italy’s first Jewish prime minister, was born on this day in 1841 in Forlì in Emilia-Romagna.  Fortis led the government from March 1905 to February 1906. A republican follower of Giuseppe Mazzini and a volunteer in the army of Giuseppe Garibaldi, he was politically of the Historical Left but in time managed to alienate both sides of the divide with his policies.  He attracted the harshest criticism for his decision to nationalise the railways, one of his personal political goals, which was naturally opposed by the conservatives on the Right but simultaneously upset his erstwhile supporters on the Left, because the move had the effect of heading off a strike by rail workers. By placing the network in state control, Fortis turned all railway employees into civil servants, who were not allowed to strike under the law.  Some politicians also felt the compensation given to the private companies who previously ran the railways was far too generous and suspected Fortis of corruption.  His foreign policies, meanwhile, upset politicians and voters on both sides. Read more…


__________________________________________________________________

Sir Antony Panizzi - revolutionary librarian


Political refugee knighted by Queen Victoria

Sir Anthony Panizzi, who as Principal Librarian at the British Museum was knighted by Queen Victoria, was a former Italian revolutionary, born Antonio Genesio Maria Panizzi in Brescello in what is now Reggio Emilia, on this day in 1797.  A law graduate from the University of Parma, Panizzi began his working life as a civil servant, attaining the position of Inspector of Public Schools in his home town.  At the same time he was a member of the Carbonari, the network of secret societies set up across Italy in the early part of the 19th century, whose aim was to overthrow the repressive regimes of the Kingdoms of Naples and Sardinia, the Papal States and the Duchy of Modena and bring about the unification of Italy as a republic or a constitutional monarchy.  He was party to a number of attempted uprisings but was forced to flee the country in 1822, having been tipped off that he was to be arrested and would face trial as a subversive.  Panizzi found a haven in Switzerland, but after publishing a book that attacked the Duchy of Modena, of which Brescello was then part, he was sentenced to death in absentia by a court in Modena.  Read more…


Home

No comments:

Post a Comment