Kiss on mobster's lips intrigues Italy

June 11, 2011 - 1:30 PM

ROME (AP) — A kiss is just a kiss, perhaps. But what does a smooch mean when it's planted on the lips of a mobster by another man?

Observers of Italy's organized crime syndicates are trying to parse out the meaning of the kiss earlier this week by a young man in a crowd outside Naples police headquarters as Daniele D'Agnese was being hustled into a squad car. D'Agnese was captured Wednesday, after two years on the run, along with Carmine Amato, the reputed chieftain of the Amato-Pagano crime clan.

Some young men told police they wanted to greet D'Agnese before he was taken to jail. One broke past police to plant the kiss. Interpretations range from a sign of respect or clan loyalty to some message in code.