The head of a Rome crime family has been given a funeral fit for a scene in Francis Ford Coppola’s Godfather movies.
ROME, ITALY (AUGUST 20, 2015) (LAPRESSE) – The head of a notorious Rome crime family was given a lavish funeral on Thursday (August 20), with a helicopter dropping red rose petals on mourners and a brass band playing the theme tune from the Godfather movies.
Italian politicians denounced the ostentatious send-off for Vittorio Casamonica, 65, and called on the interior ministry to explain whether it had given special permits for the ceremony.
An ornate hearse pulled by six, black-plumed horses, carried Casamonica’s body to a Roman Catholic basilica in the Rome suburbs, where a funeral mass was celebrated.
“You have conquered Rome, now conquer paradise,” said a poster strung up on the gates of the church. “King of Rome,” proclaimed another.
The Casamonica clan has been accused of racketeering, extortion and loan sharking. Rome city hall said on Thursday that Vittorio Casamonica himself was the subject of “many investigations into Roman criminality”.
Matteo Orfini, president of the ruling Democratic Party, wrote on Twitter: “Never again. Rome cannot be defaced by those who want it to became the set of the Godfather.”
The hard-left SEL party called on Interior Minister Angelino Alfano to explain how such a funeral could take place.
There was no immediate comment from the interior ministry.