The famous 1990s singer Elsa Lila was among a group of Albanians and Italians arrested in Rome on charges of running a drugs ring in Italy.

Famous Singer Among Albanians Arrested in Rome for Drug-Dealing

Italian Carabinieri in the square in front of the Victor Emmanuel II Monument in Rome, Italy, March 14, 2022. Photo: EPA-EFE/GIUSEPPE LAMI

A group of Albanian and Italian citizens, including a famous Albanian singer, Elsa Lila, were arrested on Wednesday by Italian police in Rome, suspected of criminal activities with narcotics.

A press release by the Italian police said the group was involved in different criminal activities in the city, such as trafficking, possession and the sale of narcotics.

The group was operating in the Acilia area in Rome, police said, “with the aim of committing an indeterminate series of crimes of trafficking, possession and sale of narcotic substances such as cocaine, hashish and marijuana, or to repeatedly purchase quantities of drugs, transport them to on board cars registered to third parties, hide them inside homes and garages in the availability of some suspects and supply other drug dealers”.

According to the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, which disclosed the names of the arrested, the Albanian singer Elsa Lila was responsible for the finances of the crime group.

“Among the 13 suspects stands out the name of Lila Elsa, 40, a well-known singer in Albania, who kept the accounts of drug dealing,” the newspaper reported.

“Also involved is the boxer Petrit Bardhi, known as ‘Titty’, already involved, in July 2015, in a previous investigation of the Gico (Organized Crime Investigation Group) of the Guardia di Finanza: with Arben Zogu (‘Riccardino’) he was part of the ‘Ponte Milvio criminal gang’ under orders by Fabrizio Diabolik Piscitelli,” it added.

“Riccardino, Titty and Pluto had become part of an Italian-Albanian clan led by the Guarnera brothers who dealt with drug trafficking. The group of Albanians based in the city of Acilia installed the organization’s slot machines in bars throughout the city,” it explained.

Lila was a very famous singer in Albania, participating in different TV shows since she was a child. She won the Albanian national song contest twice in a row. Latter she emigrated to Italy and participated in the Sanremo song contest in 2007.

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