The Italian police has seized a large arsenal of weapons in raids against neo-Nazi sympathizers, including an air-to-air missile and rocket launcher.
Elite police forces On Monday, investigations into Italians who had fought with Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine searched sites throughout northern Italy.
Among the uncovered weapons were 26 cannons, 20 bayonets, 306 weapon parts, including silencers and riflescopes, and more than 800 bullets of various calibers. The weapons came mainly from Austria, Germany and the United States.
"This is a major attack with few precedents in Italy," said Turin Police Commissioner Giuseppe De Matteis.
This is a significant attack with few precedents in Italy
Turin Police Commissar Giuseppe De Matteis
"During the operation, an air-to-air missile was confiscated in perfect condition, which was used by the Qatari army," police said about the 245-kilometer Matra rocket.
They also found automatic assault rifles they described as the "latest generation" in the cache.
At least three people, including Fabio Del Bergiolo – 50, a former candidate for neo-fascist New Force, or Forza Nuova Party (FN) –  were arrested.
The 3.54 meter long rocket was made in France, and Del Bergiolo had hoped to sell it for 470,000 euros, according to Italian media reports.
The rocket was "without explosive charge", but can be upgraded by professionals, "polic e said.
" For the time being leaves us guessing, "said Eugenio Spina, head of the anti-terror unit.
The others Arrests were a Swiss, 42, and an Italian, 51, accused of holding and marketing the rocket found by the police in a warehouse near the small Rivanazzano Terme airport in the province of Pavia.
Das Mantra Super 530 F was a modernization of the R530 rocket, which was put into service in 1980 and has a range of 25 km with an explosive charge of 30 kg.
"It is extremely dangerous and risky to make a rocket out of it does not have good engineers and equipment, "said a rocket expert who did not want to be named, the AFP said.
Similarly, it is" extremely unlikely that it can be used, but its use k changed, "he added.
News intercepted by the police led them to investigate Del Bergiolo, who had sent a photograph of the rocket for sale via the WhatsApp news service.
Del Bergiolo's house contained a huge stock of weapons as well Propaganda and Hitler memorabilia of the neo-Nazis.
They monitored him before storming his house and finding a supply of weapons Including a Scorpion machine gun, 306 gun parts and 20 bayonets.
In his collection were street signs from the Nazi era, including one with the inscription "Adolf Hitler Platz".
The Police in Pavia Also Found the Cockpit of a Military Aircraft
Digos Law Enforcement, which deals mainly with terrorism and organized crime, led the operation from Turin with the support of the police in Forlì, Milan, Novara and Varese.
"We have an idea of what the equipment confiscated is. It could not be used but will not be speculated," De Matteis told reporters.
The FN published a statement Monday distancing itself from Del Bergiolo.
Police have launched several attacks on far-right targets in recent weeks Near Turin, a man was arrested earlier this month to promote fascism and possess illegal weapons.
While Italy's far-right interior minister, Matteo Salvini, was unusually quiet after the raid, the opposition center-left Democratic Party (PD) pushed the country's populist government to do more to fight right-wing extremists.
"The extreme right in this country is about war weapons and even missiles, it's an incredible, very serious event," said Maurizio Martina, the PD's former party leader.