The Italian intelligence services were able to extract for Syria and bring back to Italy via Turkey Greta Ramelli and Vanessa Marzullo, two relief workers kidnapped by unknown criminals in Syria and then sold to the Al Nusra Front, a local branch of al-Qaeda.
The Italian Government is rumored to have paid to the Front a ransom of 12 million US dollars. This was officially denied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs Paolo Gentiloni.
Some years ago kidnapping was a favorite business of the Italian organized crime, especially in Sardinia. The Italian law forbids to pay the ransom, even allowing the Authorities to freeze the accounts of the family of the victim. The kidnapping industry today has largely been dismantled by the police.