Italy captures fugitive wanted in France for murder

6th March 2011, Comments 0 comments

Italian police arrested a Sicilian fugitive in Como in Northern Italy on Saturday who is wanted by Interpol on suspicion of strangling his wife to death in Mulhouse in Southern France in 2009.

Antonio La Malfa was traced to an apartment in the centre of Como after police were tipped off to his whereabouts by monitoring his financial activity, a police spokeswoman told AFP.

"The suspect is currently behind bars and awaiting extradition," she said.

La Malfa, who had grown his hair and beard long to disguise himself, is suspected of killing his 70-year old Italian wife in their house in France after "she tired of his violent behaviour and threatened to divorce him."

The 73-year old fugitive from Messina in Sicily had slipped through police hands just days after the murder, the spokeswoman said.

"He had been stopped with traces of blood on his clothes at Como station, but had been released again because the French authorities had yet to send out the search warrant and the officers didn't know he was wanted," she said.

Once the Interpol request came through, Como police started the hunt to track him down again, but "it was difficult, because he had considerable financial resources and could lie low," she said.

© 2011 AFP

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