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Tuesday, November 9, 2004

Mafia Studies Course at Rome University

BBC reports: Films, books and music have led people to misunderstand the Mafia.

A university lecture hall packed full before 11am is a rare sight. But law students taking part in Italy's first Mafia studies course at Rome University fill the aisles and stairways.

"Can you believe it - 500 students have enrolled," says a surprised Professor Mario Trapani, one of the course directors at Rome University's law faculty.

"We never expected this many applications. This course is really the first of its kind in Italy."

A high profile panel of experts provide the first lesson.

The students listen, captivated, as a leading Sicilian magistrate from Palermo recounts gruesome details of how a Cosa Nostra Mafia boss disposed of one unfortunate teenager...

Students will learn about the very different types of Mafia networks that exist in Italy: the Cosa Nostra in Sicily, La Camorra in Campania, La Sacra Corona Unita in Puglia and the Ndrangheta in Calabria - which investigators say is now the most powerful.

They will also examine involvement with Russian, Chinese and Albanian mafia gangs.


Law students take on the Mafia [BBC]

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