Anti-mafia police seize over €3mln from Calabrian businessman

Police in the central Italian city of Florence on Wednesday impounded assets worth more than three million euros from a Calabrian businessman with alleged mafia links.

The assets included companies, real estate, vehicles, bank accounts and several well-known eateries, police said.

Using assumed names, the businessman laundered money for the Calabrian mafia by buying patisseries, bars, pizzerias and various apartments in Florence, in the nearby town of Prato and in the southern city of Crotone, according to investigators.

The impounded businesses included the Caldana and Il Barco patisseries and the Pizzaman restaurant in Florence, as well as the Becco d'Oca bar in Prati, according to police.

Drug trafficking, extortion and money-laundering rackets have in recent decades made the Calabrian mafia or 'Ndrangheta Italy's wealthiest and most powerful criminal organisation.

The 'Ndrangheta operates throughout Italy as well as in Europe but its influence and networks extend from Australia to North and South America.