They had convinced their prey that her son was one step away from handcuffs. They had told her, posing as a lawyer before her and then a carabiniere, that her son would be arrested if she didn’t pay. But in the end the handcuffs clicked on them.
Two women and two men – the women aged 56 and 22, the men aged 42 and 25, all residing in Naples – were arrested by the police because they were accused of having defrauded an 87-year-old heiress of the Caproni family, the historic Lombard entrepreneurs and pioneers in the field of aviation.
The scam took place on January 10, when the scammers contacted the victim by telephone. An alleged lawyer and an alleged marshal of the carabinieri had explained to her that her son had been involved in an accident and that he risked arrest if she did not pay. Reached in her apartment between San Babila and the Duomo, the old woman had delivered gold bars, jewels and cash for a value of one and a half million euros, despite the fact that they had asked her for just over 10 thousand euros.
With the loot in a blue trolley, the scammers left for the Neapolitan capital, however leaving behind a series of clues that allowed the Flying Squad to frame them. Piece by piece, the investigators – led by Marco Calì – were able to identify the four components of the battery, thanks to the train with which they had returned home and their passage through the Centrale immediately after the hit. Passage filmed by the cameras, which had also filmed that blue trolley.
Precisely thanks to the frames of the electronic eyes, the investigators ascertained how the material author of the scam had reunited on board the train going home with the other three accomplices, including the woman who was carrying the luggage with the loot. The four – the police explained – are “residents in areas strongly characterized by the presence of organized crime” in the Campania capital and two of them have specific precedents. Sort of senior scam specialists.
On February 9, the Milanese police officers searched the homes of the four, finding about 2 thousand euros – which were hidden in the diapers -, numerous cell phones, probably those used to contact the victims of the scams, and a false identity document.