Woman sailor who was former Olympic champion arrested in Italy

01.11.2013

Police in Italy have arrested a former Olympic sailing champion after breaking up an alleged child kidnapping ring. Larisa Moskalenko, 50, who won bronze in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, is one of several special forces veterans arrested according to reports.

It is claimed the ring took children by boat from North Africa to Europe through Sicily, where Ms Moskalenko ran a rent-a-boat firm.

A second operation in November 2012 was reportedly foiled when police monitored the calls of Ms Moskalenko's firm, the BBC reported.

Three others arrested have been named as Luigi Cannistraro, Antonio Barazza and Sebastiano Calabrese.

Two Norwegians and a Swede are also being held in Tunisia. They have been named as Elisabeth Wenche Adresen, Martin Vage and Per Ake Helgesson.

Police claim further operations had been planned in Cyprus, Lebanon and Egypt.