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Page last updated at 17:29 GMT, Friday, 7 November 2008

'Mobster' held in surgery sting

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A suspected Italian mobster who went into a clinic for liposuction surgery has ended up losing more than his excess weight.

Domenico Magnoli, a suspected cocaine trafficker, also lost his freedom.

Soon after he regained consciousness, police officers disguised as nurses and visitors bearing flowers arrested him in his hospital room.

"We performed a little operation of our own," police spokesman Col Aldo Jacobello said.

Mr Magnoli is wanted in France for alleged trafficking.

"Our carabinieri were all in plainclothes, with a couple of them disguised as nurses and others as visitors bringing chocolates and a bouquet of flowers," Col Jacobello said.

Earlier in the day, other officers dressed as hospital cleaning staff had entered the La Madonnina clinic in Cosenza, in the southern Italian region of Calabria, to assess the situation, he told AP news agency.

The Italian news agency Ansa said that Mr Magnoli was still recovering from the effects of anaesthesia when police arrested him.

Italian police say the 27-year-old French-born man is linked to the Ndrangheta, the powerful Calabrian crime syndicate which operates drug-trafficking rings between South America and western Europe.

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