Malta’s gaming authority is taking exception to suggestions in the Italian press that it was unable to prevent the establishment of an alleged mafia-related business concern, that moved its gaming franchise to Malta.

According to the newspaper Il Fatto Quotidiano, members of the Martiradonna family – who have been given residence permits in Malta – could have had their gaming franchise in the UK, relocated to Malta through their associates. Formerly investigated by Bari’s anti-mafia police in 2009’s Operation Domino, the family’s patriarch – Vito Martiradonna – was in 2007 sentenced to three yearsrs and four months in jail for mafia association, particularly for his role as a cashier for the Capriati clan of Puglia’s organised crime syndicate, the Sacra Corona Unita.