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Church criticised over Mafia funeral

by Hannah Tooley

Anti-Mafia campaigners are demanding that the Roman Catholic Church and police chiefs in the Italian capital explain how a notorious mob boss was permitted a large funeral.

The deceased, Vittorio Casamonica, 65, was paraded in a Gothic horse-drawn carriage whilst a helicopter scattered rose petals from above and an orchestra played music from the film, The God Father.

During his life he was associated with drug trafficking, racketeering and prostitution, according to anti-mafia protestors.

It was called "one of the ugliest pages in the history of Italy," by Democratic Party MP, Ernesto Magorno in a tweet.

Rosy Bindy, head of the parliamentary anti-Mafia commission, speaking in The Independent, she said it was a "serious wound for Italy."

His coffin displayed an image of the controversial Saint Padre Pio and posters reading; "you have conquered Rome, now you'll conquer heaven" was posted outside Don Bosco parish church.

"The Church that denied a funeral to Piergiorgio Welby (an Italian man who ended his own life after suffering incurable muscular dystrophy) yesterday granted one in full regalia to the boss, Vittorio Casamonica," said anti-Mafia campaigner Roberto Savino on Twitter.

The parish priest of Don Bosco, Don Giancarlo Manieri said he was not aware of the large scale events that took place ahead of the service.
The police have denied they knew about the high-profile funeral before the event.

A large number of well-wishers turned out to morn Mr Casamonica.

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