Police arrest 22 in effort to apprehend possible successor to Sicilian mafia's 'boss of bosses'

Italian police have arrested 22 suspected Sicilian mafiosi in an operation targeting Italy's most-wanted mafia fugitive Matteo Denaro.

The raids in the Trapani province in western Sicily attacked the network of "pizzini", the system of paper notes that support Denaro's flight.

Police said their aim is to "progressively take away power from the criminal organisation and impoverish its economic resources".

Denaro, a fugitive since 1993, is considered a possible successor to the "boss of bosses" Salvatore "Toto" Riina.

Riina died last year in custody while serving 26 life sentences.

The operation was the latest move to find Denaro, 55, who has long evaded arrest for his alleged role in the bombing assassination of magistrates in the 1990s, along with other mafia hits and crimes.

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