ROME (AFP) — A Sicilian mafia boss serving a life sentence bit off and swallowed a prison guard’s finger during an altercation, an Italian news report said Tuesday.
Giuseppe Fanara, 60, who is serving a life sentence at Rome’s Rebibbia prison, attacked seven guards in June when they came to inspect his cell, the daily Il Messagero reported.
Fanara, from Sicily’s notorious Cosa Nostra clan, was nine years into his sentence under Italy’s tough “41-bis” prison regime usually applied to mafia members.
The harsh prison regime isolates mobster bosses entirely to prevent them from running their clans from behind bars.
“During the altercation he (Fanara) bit off the agent’s little finger on his right hand,” the paper said.
“The finger disappeared, leading a Rome prosecutor to conclude it had been eaten,” it added.
The prisoner then charged the six other guards, using a broomstick as a weapon, allegedly shouting “I’ll slit your throats like pigs!”
Fanara has since been transferred to Sardinia’s high-security Sassari prison, the paper said, adding that he faced new charges including aggravated assault and resisting arrest.
Earlier this year Italy decided to release elderly and infirm mobster bosses — including some belonging to the influential Cosa Nostra.
That decision sparked an outcry, forcing the justice ministry to backpedal and review the release decision.
Fanara had been handed a life term in 2009 following an anti-mafia sweep in 2006 in Sicily’s Agrigente region.
His trial and conviction, which led to three life sentences and an 18-year term, was sparked by the murder of two brothers who had bucked the Mafia’s demands and by the killing of three men in gang wars in the late 1990s.
© Agence France-Presse