ROME – Thou shalt be faithful to the Mafia.
Italian police said Thursday they have found a list of 10 commandments for mobsters in a house near Palermo, where a top Mafia boss was arrested this week.
Salvatore Lo Piccolo, who had been on the run since 1993, was vying to become the next "boss of bosses" of the Sicilian Mafia, according to Italian investigators. He was apprehended Monday by police raiding a house in the countryside outside Palermo, the Sicilian capital.
The list was found among his coded notes about the administration of Cosa Nostra that were delivered by Lo Piccolo's aides.
Police in Palermo said that the list opened with a preamble that said: "I swear to be faithful to Cosa Nostra. Should I betray, my flesh will burn." Under the category "Rights and Duty" were the 10 entries, meant to be a sort of users' manual for the good mobster.
The list was typewritten in uppercase letters, police said.
Italian newspaper La Repubblica published a photo of what it said was the list, under the headline: "The Godfather's Ten Commandments."
The list bars mobsters from hanging out in bars, from befriending police and being late for appointments. It also bars them from "taking possession of money that belong to others or other families."
How to treat women also features in the decalogue.
"You shall not look at wives of our friends," says one entry. "You shall respect your wife," says another. However, the Mafia comes first, as the fifth "commandment" orders a mobster to "be available for Cosa Nostra at any moment, even if your wife is about to give birth."
The last part of the list sets out application rules, saying that those who have a very bad behavior and no moral values cannot join.
Investigators believe that the 65-year-old Lo Piccolo could have eventually emerged from a power struggle as the Mafia's new top boss following the capture of Bernardo Provenzano, the reputed No. 1 of the Cosa Nostra crime syndicate. Provenzano was arrested on a farm near Corleone, Sicily, in April 2006, after more than 40 years on the run.