On August 5, World’s Most Wanted was released on Netflix, a five-episode docu-series exploring five notorious fugitives and the hunt to capture them. One of the episodes looks at the police’s pursuit of Matteo Messina Denaro, an Italian mafia boss considered to be the leader of the Sicilian Mafia following the arrest of other high-ranking mafia figures.
The 58-year-old Denaro, nicknamed “Diabolic,” is often considered to be the Italian mafia playboy for his luxurious lifestyle and string of lovers, a stark contrast to traditional mafia bosses. Since he has spent the last couple of decades in hiding, not much is known about his personal life, including whether he is married or has a partner. However, it’s widely believed that he is still single and has no constant partner.
Here’s what you need to know:
Many Articles About the Mafia Boss Indicate That He Has Had Many Romantic Partners & He Has One Known Daughter From One of His Relationships
A profile on Denaro in the Guardian writes that even though the mafia leader has been in hiding for the past two decades, he has continued to see multiple women, considering himself a “serial seducer.” Police have said that one of their approaches to try to capture Denaro has been to “follow the women.”
In the mid-1990s, he had a daughter with his partner at the time, Franca Alagna. The exact year of birth is unknown, with outlets reporting 1993, 1995 or 1996. One article in the UK wrote that Denaro is believed to have a “string of illegitimate children,” although only the birth of his daughter has ever been confirmed. In correspondence with Antonino Vaccarino, Denaro often wrote about his daughter and that he had never met her.
In 1996, there was talk of Denaro having an affair with a woman who would supply him with video games, Maria Mesi. In one note, she wrote, “Donkey Kong 3 is out and I can’t wait for it to be on sale.” The two apparently traveled to Greece together on holiday, with Denaro using a fake name. Mesi was arrested in 2000 and charged with concealing a fugitive after authorities found a series of notes exchanged between Mesi and Denaro.
Despite his love of women, Denaro is said to be ruthless when it comes to business. One case that’s been reported frequently occurred in 1993, when Denaro killed a rival mafia leader, Vincenzo Milazzo, before strangling Milazzo’s pregnant girlfriend to death.
His Lifestyle Is Considered to Be Vastly Different From Other Mafia Leaders, Who Are Much More Traditional & Conservative
Denaro, whose surname means “money” in Italian, is considered to be very different from other mafia bosses, primarily due to his lavish lifestyle. Italian prosecutor Teresa Principato, who spent years looking for Denaro, said, “He is not the classic Mafioso, like Provenzano, who you would find in the country eating his ricotta cheese and apple.” Instead, he drove fast cars, dressed in luxury clothing and frequently traveled out of the country.
The Globe and Mail reported that he had an affair with an Austrian receptionist and killed the hotel manager who spoke up against the relationship. Denaro is known for his infamous quote, “With all the people I have killed, you could fill a graveyard.” The outlet reported that prosecutors believe Denaro went abroad to change his appearance through plastic surgery.