Domenico Rancadore: Sicilian Mafia man 'no Don Corleone' courts hears

Domenico Rancadore The arrest warrant for Domenico Rancadore had made him out to be like the Don Corleone character in the Godfather films, his defence said

Related Stories

A convicted Mafia boss who went into hiding in west London for 20 years is no "Don Corleone", a court has heard.

Domenico Rancadore, 64, was arrested in Uxbridge in August where he was living with his family under an assumed name.

He was found guilty of Mafia association and extortion in Italy in 1999 and given a seven-year jail term.

But his lawyer told an extradition hearing the arrest warrant likening him to the fictional Mafia boss in The Godfather films was misleading.

'Travesty of judgement'

Alan Jones QC told Westminster Magistrates' Court that it was an exaggeration to describe Rancadore as "one of the heads of the Cosa Nostra [the Sicilian Mafia]".

He argued the Italian courts had simply found the former teacher guilty of being "an important point of reference for people at the top of the organisation" and that he bribed one person in 1987.

The defence counsel claimed the wording of the European arrest warrant was "distorting" and made a "travesty of the judgement" in Italy.

Mr Jones said that two warrants were issued for Rancadore last August and the second one had deliberately elevated his participation in the organisation.

He suggested someone must have looked at the first warrant and thought it would be better to "raise it to a different level of crime" as they thought "that must be what the British court is after".

The exaggeration had whipped up a huge amount of publicity "as though Mr Rancadore was Don Corleone", the barrister added.

Domenico Rancadore family home Rancadore was arrested at his house in Uxbridge in August 2013

Rancadore, who was known as The Professor in his native Sicily, moved to London in 1994 with his wife and two children.

He adopted the moniker Marc Skinner, using the maiden name of his British-born wife's mother.

Previously, the court heard Rancadore had fled Italy because he wanted "a normal life" for his family and had "cut every tie" to his past.

The prosecution allege he had been "deliberately absent" from the 1999 trial, where he was subsequently sentenced, and had deliberately "hidden" his identity as he knew he was a wanted man.

The hearing was adjourned until 28 February.

More on This Story

Related Stories

BBC London



24 °C 16 °C

BBC Local Live

    News on the hour 09:00:

    The top headlines on BBC London 94.9 at 09:00

    • DJ murder: Police investigating a five-year-old murder say the main suspect is in Nigeria
    • 'Zoo cruelty': Westminster council looks into claims of animal cruelty at London Zoo late events
    Tottenham defender signs five-year deal 08:53:

    Tottenham defender Danny Rose has signed a new five-year contract, putting him in competition with Ben Davies - a new signing from Swansea - for the left-back spot at White Hart Lane.

    Tottenham defender Danny Rose

    Rose, 24, has made 38 Premier League appearances for Spurs since joining from Leeds in 2007 and was part of the GB squad at the London 2012 Olympics.

    Mass migration 08:40: BBC London 94.9 Radio

    On Vanessa Feltz's show after 09:00, large-scale migration would put huge pressure on services and and living standards, according to a new report - are you worried?

    Call 020 7224 2000 or text 81333, starting your message with 'London', to share your views.

    A survivor's story 08:32:

    With numerous inquiries into alleged child abuse either up and running or poised to begin, is there a risk the individual voices of victims might get lost? One survivor believes so.

    "I was trafficked to Wrexham, Cornwall, Plymouth and London and forced to perform sex acts on men there," he says.

    Top headlines
    CBBC actor's killing appeal 08:22:

    Police hunting a man over the stabbing of a children's TV actor have offered a £10,000 reward for information leading to his arrest and prosecution.

    Carl Beatson Asiedu

    Carl Beatson Asiedu, 19, who had appeared in CBBC's MI High, was stabbed in the heart near Club Life nightclub in Vauxhall, south London, in 2009.

    Traffic jam 08:15: Paul Murphy-Kasp Journalist, BBC London

    There are queues going into London on the A13 through Barking and Dagenham.

    For further travel updates, visit BBC London's travel website.

    North Circular travel woes 08:08: Paul Murphy-Kasp Journalist, BBC London

    A lane is shut on the North Circular eastbound, by Ikea in Neasden, causing tailbacks.

    For more travel updates on twitter follow @BBCTravelAlert

    Dry with sunny spells 08:03:

    This morning should be dry with sunny spells. There should still be some fine weather this afternoon, however showers are likely to spread in from the west. Maximum temperature: 24C (75F).

    08:00: Matthew Bell BBC News, London

    Good morning. I'll be bringing you the latest news, sport, travel and weather for London throughout the day.

    Get in touch with your comments and photos by emailing



BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.