updated 10/11/2008 1:15:46 PM ET 2008-10-11T17:15:46

Police in the Naples area arrested seven alleged mobsters on Saturday, including an actor who played a boss in an award-winning movie denouncing the mafia.

The pre-dawn raids targeting the Camorra crime syndicate netted alleged members of a clan responsible for the gangland-style killing of six African immigrants last month, said police in the town of Caserta, near Naples.

Those arrested were not directly linked to the deadly shooting, but were suspects in other attacks and crimes. The clan's alleged boss, Giuseppe Setola, escaped arrest and was being sought along with three others, police said in a statement.

The Sept. 18 shooting of the Africans sparked rioting in an area already rife with lawlessness and violence, prompting the government to deploy 500 soldiers to set up checkpoints and help police.

Investigators believe the Camorra orchestrated the slayings to punish the Africans for getting involved in drug trafficking, one of the syndicate's lucrative activities. At least four men accused in the killings have been arrested in sweeping anti-mafia raids over the last weeks.

Among those netted in Saturday's sweeps around Caserta was Bernardino Terracciano, who played local mob boss Uncle Bernardino in the movie "Gomorra," said police official Rodolfo Ruperti.

Terracciano, 53, is accused of extortion and associating with the mafia, Ruperti said.

Director Matteo Garrone's study of the Naples-based Camorra won second place at the Cannes Film Festival this spring and is Italy's hopeful for a best foreign language film at the Academy Awards in the United States.

The movie is based on a book by Roberto Saviano, whose expose on the Camorra's hold on everything from fashion to waste disposal forced him to go under police protection.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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