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Police raid homes, businesses across Germany, Italy, Bulgaria in Italian mafia probe

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Police in Germany, Italy, and Bulgaria raided 46 residential and commercial buildings on Wednesday as part of a European probe into the Italian mafia, German police said.

They said they would release more information after the raids had been completed.

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The synchronized raids were the result of a European investigation into a group, some of whom belong to the “Ndrangheta,” the most powerful mafia group in Italy. They are accused of forming a criminal organization and of tax evasion worth millions of euros.

Police in Bavaria said in a statement that police and tax investigators in Augsburg had been investigating the case for more than a year, under the leadership of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office.

The Ndrangheta is based in the southern region of Calabria, the toe of Italy’s boot, and has surpassed Sicily’s more famous Cosa Nostra to become the most powerful organized crime group in the country -- and one of the largest in the world.

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