Drug Trafficking Organization Busted

Florence police have completely dismantled a large drug dealing organization in the gardens of the Fortezza da Basso resulting in 25 arrests. The investigation into this stable and continuous flow of drugs began in October 2018 and was headed by District Attorney Antonio Nastasi as well as the Chief Prosecutor Giuseppe Creazzo. The operation, “BAT24,” utilized hidden cameras, undercover agents and other resources to reveal the presence of a serious criminal association which caused dozens of drug-related incidents.

The efforts by the police to intervene in these uninterrupted drug sales increased after the death of a 21-year-old student who overdosed on a lethal dose of heroin he bought in the park last September.

Majority of the arrests were Nigerian citizens, 17 of which were in Florence seeking asylum. The detainees are now in the Florentine prison of Sollicciano awaiting confirmation of their arrest.

“For a single drug dealer, the law provides penalties that in most cases do not allow an arrested person to be held in detention, but thanks to this investigation and the use of undercover agents it has been possible to detain an entire drug trafficking ring and raise the charge to criminal association,” says Creazzo.

The work of the police force and this in-depth investigation has paved the way for more efficient methods of dealing with illegal drug trafficking.

“The fight against drug dealing is our priority for the livability of Florence and to maintain legality,” wrote Mayor Dario Nardella on Twitter.  (kelsey lentz)

To read more in Italian, visit Florence’s La Repubblica news site.