In Montreal, QC Canada police yesterday "raided a dozen Italian cafes, arresting 11 people and seizing drugs, money and business documents" in a move to squelch an ongoing turf war among rival Mafia clans which has resulted in the firebombing of 19 establishments over the last few months as reported by The Canadian Press: the raided "cafes are not the same ones that have been targeted by the Molotov cocktail-tossing firebombers. But police expressed hope the raids will help them gather information they need to calm growing tensions." Montreal police Commander Denus Mainville said "the 11 people arrested worked for a head of the [alleged drug trafficking] network," and "that head had direct links to the Italian Mafia" as reported by Paul Cherry for The Montreal Gazette. None of the arrested 11 individuals have been identified.
Over the last year several Rizzuto clan members and associates – including patriarch Nicolo Rizzuto and his grandson Nick Rizzuto Jr. – have been slain in Montreal. Some mob experts speculate that interloping 'ndrangheta or Calabrian mobsters from Ontario – perhaps with the blessing of some boys from New York – may be responsible for the ongoing massacre against the Sicilian Rizzuto clan.
And to the victors go the spoils which largely is about control over the drug trade as reported by Chris Doucette for The Toronto Sun: "Montreal has historically been Canada's top prize when it comes to the Mafia because of its shipping port. Charlie 'Lucky' Luciano realized in 1954 that controlling Montreal was critical to running the lucrative drug market in New York. The city is ideally situated as a 'gateway' for importing drugs from around the world and then shipping them off to nearby New York." The 'ndrangheta in Canada "is capable of replacing the now weakened Rizzuto clan," and "is considered by Italian authorities to be more powerful, richer and better able to distribute drugs globally than any Mafia group" as reported by Rob Lamberti for The Toronto Sun.
The Mafia long has used food and booze establishments through which to move its drug product. Vito Genovese was put away in 1959 for trafficking heroin through his gay bars, and in the mid-1980s the feds busted the so-called Pizza Connection ring in which the Mafia distributed $1.6 billion of heroin through pizzerias between 1975 and 1984.
But of course the Mafia's official line for public relations purposes is that it does not deal in drugs.