A suspected Mafia hit squad allegedly ambushed and shot to death a prominent local magistrate Friday as he drove from his home to his office in southern Sicily, police said.

Police said the victim was Rosario Livatino, 38, who was involved in prosecuting Mafia cases in the area of Agrigento, a large market town near the south coast of Sicily.Livatino headed scores of Mafia investigations as a former state prosecutor. He was engaged in imposing restrictions on Mafia suspects and was scheduled to order members of two local gangs into custody Friday, officials said.