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Naples mob sells counterfeit money — in office hours

Naples mob sells counterfeit money -- in office hours
Source: Unsplash

In the market for counterfeit cash? The Naples mafia prides itself on its crisp new fake banknotes — but also apparently on its work-life balance, with buyers restricted to office hours.

Police said Monday it has dismantled a network of counterfeiters in the southern Italian city, arresting some 60 people alleged to be involved in the production and selling of notes then smuggled to France, Spain and Greece.

The group, controlled by a clan belonging to the Camorra mafia, produced around six million euros ($6.5 million) in 20, 50 and 100 euro notes, police said in a statement.

The Mazzarella clan is famed for its involvement in counterfeiting in Naples, which has long been dubbed the capital of fake bills.

According to police, the counterfeiters operated standard office hours, opening for business from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m in the week, and to 1:00 p.m on Sundays.

The notes were ranked by quality, including texture and colour, police said.

The 50-euro ones were dubbed “Maradonas”, after the city’s flamboyant Argentinian striker and Serie A-winning icon Diego Maradona, or “Peles”, after the late Brazilian star.

Those busted included seven people nabbed on site at the Naples apartment used as both production studio and shop.

They included three French buyers who had just bought some counterfeit money and were preparing to return to France, the statement said.

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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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