Mafia writer gets asteroid named after him

June 30, 2012 at 11:42 AM

ROME, June 30 (UPI) -- An Italian journalist and author known for exposing the Naples mafia was honored by having an asteroid named after him, officials said.

Roberto Saviano had asteroid No. 278447 named after him Friday, Italy's ANSA news agency reported.

Saviano was given the honor by the International Astronomical Union for exposing "the Camorra's organized-crime activities in his 2006 best-seller 'Gomorrah.'"

Saviano received death threats for his novel and was placed under round-the-clock police protection after its publication. "Gomorrah" was later turned into a film and won second prize at Cannes and five European Film Awards in 2008.

"Thank you Dr. Silvano Casulli, who discovered the asteroid, for deciding to name it after me," said Saviano. "Now I'll look at the sky through different eyes."

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