The most dangerous mobster in Italy cheated police who were on the verge of arresting him by fleeing for a mile down a sewer.
Giuseppe Setola, who is wanted for 18 murders committed during a cocaine-fuelled rampage last year, spotted the Carabinieri were approaching his hide-out north of Naples at 4.30am yesterday on CCTV. Regarded as a dangerous psychopath even by his fellow Mafiosi, Setola just had time to grab his Kalashnikov, lift his bed and disappear down a trapdoor, before the officers burst in.
After searching the tiny flat and grilling Setola's wife, Stefania Martinelli, the officers discovered the secret exit connected to Trentola-Ducenta's main sewage pipe. Setola and an accomplice broke out of the 3ft pipe through a manhole and held up a passing Alfa Romeo.
Setola, who was jailed for murder, escaped from a low-security prison clinic in April last year after persuading a doctor that he had a severe eye disease. He resurfaced in Caserta, north of Naples, where he went on a killing spree against relatives of informers, shopkeepers who failed to keep up protection payments, and finally six African immigrants, who were said to be dealing in drugs independently of the Camorra.