Italy’s largest mafia trial in three decades has resulted in the conviction and sentencing of more than 200 people for crimes including criminal association, extortion and bribery, Lorenzo Tondo reports for The Guardian. The verdicts mark the end of a three-year “maxi trial” held in a high-security courtroom in the southern Calabria region against an extensive network of members belonging to the notorious ‘Ndrangheta, a powerful organized crime syndicate that enjoys a near-monopoly on the European cocaine trade. Almost all of the defendants were arrested in December 2019 after a lengthy investigation that began in 2016 and covered at least 11 Italian regions. At the time of the raids it was the biggest operation against the crime syndicates since the 1986-92 Palermo maxi trials, when Sicilian prosecutors put 475 people in the dock. The mobsters were members or affiliates of the leading ‘Ndrangheta group operating in Vibo Valentia, an economically disadvantaged rural area where the mafia has exerted its influence for many years.