Italian Mafia bosses have been thwarted in their ingenious attempts to use video phones to rig parliamentary elections.
The latest generation of mobile phones boast video streaming functionality and inevitably it didn't take too long before people worked out how to put the new technology to a criminal use.
The Mafia often play a strong part in influencing election results in Italy and were hoping to use video phones to check up on people who pledge their support to a particular candidate.
Voters would be put under pressure to take a video phone into the polling station and broadcast footage back of them putting a cross in the appropriate box in order to prove they honoured their word.
However, the authorities have wised up to the mobsters' plans and may require all voters to deposit their mobiles before entering the polling station.
A statement from the Italian Interior Ministry said: "Interior Minister Giuseppe Pisanu has taken immediate measures to stave off any attempt to violate the secrecy of the vote, with particular reference to the use of 3G phones in polling stations."
Regional elections will take place in Italy on 25 May
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