Timeframe: 2020 - 2023
Budget: EUR 4,5 million
Donor: Italian Department of Public Security
The ‘Ndrangheta is one of the most extensive and powerful criminal organizations in the world.
Its roots are in the Italian region of Calabria, but it has now expanded to more than 40 countries worldwide and continues to grow at a steady rate.
The insidious spread of mafia-type crime poses an urgent threat to international peace and security, due to its penetration of political and economic environments and the widespread corruption associated with it.
The ‘Ndrangheta is involved in a wide range of organized criminal activities, from drug trafficking and money laundering to extortion and the rigging of public contracts.
These enormous illegal profits are then reinvested into regular companies, further strengthening the organization’s power and influence and polluting the legal economy.
Coordinating a multilateral response
I-CAN works with selected countries to combat the growing mafia phenomenon.
It coordinates a global law enforcement approach by leveraging INTERPOL’s capabilities and analytical tools to share expertise, intelligence and best practices.
Funded by the Italian Department of Public Security, the project raises global awareness and understanding about the ‘Ndrangheta and their modus operandi, to more effectively identify and arrest suspects.
I-CAN is built around three key pillars:
- Content − Building on Italy’s direct experience and knowledge of the threat posed by ‘Ndrangheta, its structure and how it operates.
- Access − Making this vital policing information available to targeted countries in real-time, in order to pinpoint patterns, trends and potential targets for law enforcement.
- Action − Coordinating joint investigations with national law enforcement agencies to identify fugitives and arrest individuals wanted in connection with ‘Ndrangheta-linked activities.
Within these pillars, the project delivers different types of practical support:
- e-Learning: six modules on the I-CAN project will be made available through the INTERPOL Virtual Academy and the curricula of the Police Academies of the member countries.
- Ad-hoc training: tailored to the specific needs of the law enforcement agencies involved.
- Analytical support: through the I-CAN Criminal Analysis File – which contains details of around 50,000 entities, companies and individuals – and more than 30 published analytical reports.
- Specialized operational support: including linguistic expertise and coordination of operations.
Operational Working Group Meeting - Buenos Aires, Argentina
6 to 9 November, 2023
In collaboration with Argentina’s Superintendency of Federal Investigations, the I-CAN project organized the first Operational Working Group session for South America, with more than 100 prosecutors, investigators and anti-mafia analysts. Experts from five countries shared operational intelligence on ongoing investigations and performed live cross-checks. A first comparative analysis was also undertaken on existing legal frameworks.
As at April 2023, I-CAN had led to the arrest of 46 ‘Ndrangheta members in locations all over the world.
Edgardo Greco, known as "the 'Ndrangheta killer", had been on the run for 16 years. A dangerous fugitive, he had been sentenced to life imprisonment for two murders and an attempted murder in the context of a mafia war between the Pino-Sena and Perna- Pranno gangs that marked the early 1990s. Greco was arrested on 2 February 2023 in Saint Etienne, France thanks to the coordination provided by the I-CAN Project.
Rocco Morabito, alias "Tamunga" and a prominent member of the Morabito-Bruzzaniti-Palamara clan was considered one of the world's leading drug traffickers. He was the subject of a Red Notice issued by Italy in 1995. Placed on Italy’s list of the 30 most wanted fugitives, he was arrested in Uruguay in 2017 but escaped from prison in 2019. He was apprehended again in Brazil on 24 May 2021 thanks to the support provided by the I-CAN project, and extradited to Italy in July 2022.
Operation Magma 2007 (in 2020), rounded up six fugitives in Albania, Argentina and Costa Rica, following intelligence gained in an earlier operation.
I-CAN Global Focal Points Meeting (Rome, Italy)
14 to 16 November 2022
More than 80 participants including analysts, investigators and prosecutors gathered in Rome to discuss ways to combat the ‘Ndrangheta and promote international cooperation. The meeting raised awareness of future perspectives and regional needs as well as country experiences. Central to this meeting was the discussion on challenges and solutions in investigating and prosecuting the 'Ndrangheta.
Meeting of police chiefs
INTERPOL hosted the first meeting of police chiefs from around the world under the INTERPOL Cooperation Against ‘Ndrangheta (I-CAN) project. The meeting set the blueprint for future operational activities, following on from the project’s official launch in January 2020.