An Italian mob boss, who was known as the "cocaine boss of Milan" escaped from a prison in Uruguay overnight, as he was waiting to be extradited back to Italy, Uraguay's interior ministry said on Monday.
Rocco Morabito, 52, had been imprisoned in the South American country since 2017 and was the leader of one of Italy’s most powerful organised crime groups, the Calabrian ’Ndranghet, which is one of Europe's biggest importers of South American cocaine.
Uruguay's interior ministry said in a statement that Morabito and three others had escaped late at night through the roof of the prison in Montevideo.
Morabito had been on the run for more than two decades from convictions for Mafia association and drug trafficking, among other crimes.
“It is disconcerting and serious that a criminal like Rocco Morabito, boss of the ‘Ndrangheta, managed to escape from a jail in Uruguay while he was waiting to be extradited to Italy,” Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said.
“I make two commitments, first: to shed light on evasion procedures, asking for immediate explanations from the Montevideo government. Second: we will continue to hunt down Morabito, wherever he is, to throw him in jail as he deserves.”