Officers are also accused of giving local drug dealers permits which allowed them to move around freely during the lockdown in a province that recorded Italy’s third-highest coronavirus death rate. The officers were all operating at the Levante police station in the northern town of Piacenza, which has now been shut entirely. In a recorded phone call, one of the arrested officers boasts about having created “a criminal gang” and acting like hit TV series Gomorrah’s bandits. image: YouTube “Nothing that happened at that police station that was legitimate,” said Piacenza’s prosecutor Grazia Pradella. “While the city of Piacenza was counting its many coronavirus dead, these Carabinieri were supplying drugs to dealers who were without it due to the anti-Covid measures,’’ prosecutor Grazia Pradella said. Local drug traffickers tortured The province of Piacenza has recorded the third-highest Covid-19 death rates in Italy. The officers are also accused of signing off on declarations that made it appear the drug dealers had been checked by authorities when they moved about during the lockdown. They also are accused of mistreating and torturing suspects, a behaviour that Pradella likened to the methods of crime cartels and said date as far back as 2017. Prosecutors say some of those victims, who were brutally tortured, were drug dealers who refused to collaborate with the officers in the alleged local drug-trafficking activities. The investigation was launched six months ago after a report filed by a military officer who had been serving in Piacenza. A trial date is set to be announced soon.