Modern Crime Lesson #1: If You’re Boyfriend’s In The Mob, Be Careful On Facebook

Social media sites are a double-edged sword in the battle between criminals and law enforcement. In this case, the cops were able to exploit the growing habit of wanting to share all your latest personal news with your friends and family.

One of the photos that gave away the location, outside a well-known Italian restaurant
One of the photos that gave away the location, outside a well-known Italian restaurant

Worldcrunch NEWSBITES

MARBELLA - By now, most of us know to be extra careful when posting personal information on Facebook. A compromising picture might jeopardize your friendships, your marriage, your career… and if you happen to be among Italy's most wanted mobsters, even your freedom.

Italian and Spanish police have arrested alleged top boss Salvatore D'Avino, whose whereabouts were traced thanks to snapshots posted on Facebook by his pregnant girlfriend.

D'Avino, 39, had been on the run since 2003. He is accused of being a key member of the bloody Giuliano clan of the Camorra crime syndicate of Naples. Italian police had issued arrest warrants for him in 2003 and 2007 on charges of drug trafficking and mafia activity. He faces up to 20 years in prison.

According to Italian authorities, D'Avino had gone into hiding in Tangier, Morocco where he started a relationship with a Moroccan woman. When she got pregnant, the couple moved to the Spanish town of Marbella, on the Costa del Sol.

But with the impending arrival of the offspring, the future mother made a kid's mistake. She posted on Facebook two photographs of herself, proudly pregnant, so her friends and relatives could see. The problem is that in one photo she was posed in front of a sign for a very-well known beach in Marbella, and the other is shot in front of a bronze statue of a lion outside a popular local Italian restaurant.

With that head start, the police were able to locate her whereabouts. Later, monitoring her e-mail, they moved in after she sent a message to D'Avino saying that the birth was imminent.

When the mobster arrived, the police were there, and placed him under arrest. One negative postscript, however, from the police point of view: the Spanish authorities who actually made the arrest were not pleased with their Italian colleagues for describing how the suspect was traced – they fear that when other criminals hear the story, they will remember to be careful on Facebook.

Read more from La Stampa in Italian

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A Mother In Spain Denied Child Custody Because She Lives In Rural Area

A court in Spain usurps custody of the one-year-old boy living with his mother in the "deep" part of the Galicia region, forced to instead live with his father in the southern city of Marbella, which the judge says is "cosmopolitan" with good schools and medical care. Women's rights groups have taken up the mother's case.

A child in Galician countryside

Laure Gautherin

A Spanish court has ordered the withdrawal of a mother's custody of her one-year-old boy because she is living in the countryside in northwestern Spain, where the judge says the child won't have "opportunities for the proper development of his personality."

The case, reported Monday in La Voz de Galicia, has sparked outrage from a women's rights association but has also set off reactions from politicians of different stripes across the province of Galicia, defending the values of rural life.

Judge María Belén Ureña Carazo, of the family court of Marbella, a city on the southern coast of 141,000 people, has ordered the toddler to stay with father who lives in the city rather than with his mother because she was living in "deep Galicia" where the child would lack opportunities to "grow up in a happy environment."

Front page of La Voz de Galicia - October 25, 2021

Front page of La Voz de Galicia - Monday 25 October, 2021

La Voz de Galicia

Better in a "cosmopolitan" city?

The judge said Marbella, where the father lives, was a "cosmopolitan city" with "a good hospital" as well as "all kinds of schools" and thus provided a better environment for the child to thrive.

The mother has submitted a formal complaint to the General Council of the Judiciary that the family court magistrate had acted with "absolute contempt," her lawyer told La Voz de Galicia.

The mother quickly accumulated support from local politicians and civic organizations. The Clara Campoamor association described the judge's arguments as offensive, intolerable and typical of "an ignorant person who has not traveled much."

The Xunta de Galicia, the regional government, has addressed the case, saying that any place in Galicia meets the conditions to educate a minor. The Socialist party politician Pablo Arangüena tweeted that "it would not hurt part of the judiciary to spend a summer in Galicia."

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