Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

In this photo taken from a video provided by the Italian Carabinieri (paramilitary police), people identified by police as Italian crime sindicate ’ndrangheta members kiss each other.

The Associated Press

Recruits for Italy's 'ndrangheta crime syndicate have been caught on video taking a loyalty oath, swearing "under the splendour of the moon," in a ceremony secretly recorded by police in what investigators called authorities' first such glimpse of the ritual.

Carabinieri paramilitary police in Milan on Tuesday released video of what they said were two "convivial" get-togethers of suspected mobsters at a farmhouse in Castello di Brianza, northern Italy, with one recruit as young as 17.

The oath reminds the recruits that traitors are expected to kill themselves and to keep an extra bullet handy in case it comes to that.

Story continues below advertisement

Investigators didn't explain how they managed to film at the ceremony. Prosecutors said it was the first time authorities have obtained video of an 'ndrangheta initiation ritual. The same investigation led to 38 arrests. The probe concentrated on loans mobsters made to businesses in northern Italy and Switzerland that were unable to get credit otherwise.

In a separate intercepted phone call, one suspect says to tell someone reluctant to repay money: "I will cut his head off."'

Milan prosecutor Ilda Boccassini said the video shows how "the force of tradition" helps the 'ndrangheta, a global cocaine trafficking organization, to thrive.

Suspected mobsters are seen kissing each other on the cheek in greeting. The 'ndrangheta, rooted in the southern Calabrian region, has spread north as it invested illicit revenues.

In another scene, four males huddle together as words of a loyalty oath are repeated.

"Right in this holy evening, in the silence of the night, under the light of the stars and under the splendor of the moon, I create the holy chain … the holy society," one man says.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies