Journalist Daniele Piervincenzi and filmmaker Edoardo Anselmi, who work for Rai2’s program ‘Nemo Nessuno Escluso’, were reportedly “violently attacked” by Roberto Spada and another unidentified man.

The alleged attacker is a member of the Spada family, who are well-known in the media for being at the centre of several investigations surrounding corruption, racketeering and drug smuggling.

The RAI crew were in Ostia to report on the outcome of local municipal elections on Sunday, when they were assaulted.

According to RAI, Mr Spada head-butted Mr Piervincenzi, leaving him with a broken nose.

Mr Spada reportedly became violent after accusing the crew of asking him the same questions for an hour and a half, ignoring his insistence that he had no comment, and then “forcing their way” into a members-only club, disturbing a session and frightening his son.   

“What would you have done?” Mr Spada asked his Facebook friends and followers in a statement following the incident.

“In the last 10 days at least 30 journalists have come to break our balls; patience has a limit,” he added.

Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi labelled the attack as “unacceptable” and vowed to rid Italy's capital of crime and extremism in a Tweet.

Mr Piervincenzi said on Wednesday that Mr Spada should apologise for attacking him and inflicting injury.

“It was an unexpected thing; I was just doing an interview,” the journalist said.

“We were trying to understand the reasons for the [Spada clan’s] endorsement of [fascist political movement] CasaPound.”

Mr Piervincenzi denied Mr Spada’s allegation that the crew had frightened his son, saying that he was the one who was scared.

“If [Mr Spada] apologises, I’m ready to forgive him, but he should apologise to Ostia, where the high crime rate and the clans have spoiled the social fabric of a beautiful place,” he concluded.

Judicial sources stated on Wednesday evening that a criminal investigation had been opened into the attack, and the case has been assigned to the local anti-mafia prosecutor’s office.