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Maria Bertinelli is the mob boss known as Fenice, and the mother of Helena Bertinelli, also known as the Huntress.

When she was young, Maria married Frank Bertinelli, a mobster of the infamous Gotham City crime family, the Bertinellis. The couple had two children, a daughter named Helena and a son named Pino. Later, Maria fell in love with a mobster from a rival gang family, Santo Cassamento. Knowing her husband would never agree to a divorce and seeing no other way to be with Santo, Maria hatched up a plan to kill Frank and escape to Italy with the children. However, the Cassamento family betrayed her and attempted to kill her children as well. Her daughter Helena survived, though Maria was unaware of this, but her husband and son were killed.

Maria was forced to escape to Italy with Santo and attempted to kill herself, but failed. She decided then to flee and build up her own mafia family in order to exact her revenge on the Cassamentos for killing her children. She traveled back to the United States and became the mob boss known as Fenice.

After many years, she was ready to kill Santo Cassamento, but her plan was interrupted by the Birds of Prey and Maria came face-to-face with her daughter, realizing she was in fact alive. Helena, however, was disgusted upon learning of her mother's actions and blamed her for her father and brother's deaths. She turned her mother in to the police, and Maria was imprisoned in Blackgate Penitentiary.[1]

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This character is or was primarily an enemy of the Birds of Prey in its various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Birds of Prey Villains" category.

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