Title: Colombo Crime Family
Description: LCN, Persico
GangstersInc - September 17, 2006 03:23 PM (GMT)
No body's home in mobster grave
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
If the feds ever find gangster William (Wild Bill) Cutolo's corpse, there's a tombstone and empty grave waiting for him at the Cemetery of the Resurrection in Staten Island.
Carved in black stone under a likeness of Cutolo and his wife, Peggy, are the words: "Cherished Husband, Dad and Poppy. Our Love Is Forever and Always. Until We Meet Again. We Love You Beyond The Moon."
"His picture is there, but he's not there," said Cutolo's sister, Barbara DePalo, 67. "I just find talking to him there peaceful."
Not far away in downtown Brooklyn, prosecutors will be raising the unanswered questions about his death next week when Cutolo's alleged killers, Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico, 52, the acting boss of the Colombo crime family, and underboss John (Jackie) DeRoss, 69, go on trial in Federal Court.
Cutolo was a handsome, charismatic union official who played Santa at Christmas parties and raised millions for charity, while at the same time lining his own pockets with illicit cash as a labor racketeer, loanshark and Colombo capo. He was last seen in Brooklyn near the Verrazano Bridge on May 26, 1999.
He's still remembered as a devoted churchgoer at Our Lady Help of Christians on Staten Island.
"I sat behind him and his family every Sunday," said a parishioner, who recalls shaking the mobster's hand during the exchange of peace during Mass. "He was very nice."
But during the bloody Colombo civil war in the early 1990s, Cutolo and his crew of combat-ready shooters were aligned with the faction opposing Persico's father, Carmine (The Snake) Persico, who remains the official boss of the crime family to this day.
"After the war, they supposedly made their peace, but for years he [Cutolo] walked around with a bull's-eye on his back," said retired FBI supervisor Bruce Mouw.
The trial may not disclose how or where he died, but Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Seigel contends Allie Boy ordered the hit because he feared Cutolo "would assume permanent control of the family" when the younger Persico went to prison.
Cutolo's wife, who purchased the cemetery plot, went into the witness protection program with her two daughters and son after Billy Jr. agreed to wear a hidden wire for the government to catch his father's killers.
That decision didn't sit well with DePalo, who lashed out at her nephew in a blistering "In Memoriam" notice she placed in The Daily News in 2002.
"My beloved brother, I'm sorry your family took the easy way out. Especially the Pansey on his crusade," the notice stated.
Billy Jr. later experienced psychological problems during the investigation and was unusable as a witness.
Originally published on September 17, 2006
GangstersInc - September 26, 2006 05:49 PM (GMT)
Allie Boy 'erased'
Colombo crime boss, prosecutor sez
Colombo crime boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico committed a "classic and brilliant political assassination" when he ordered the murder of underboss William (Wild Bill) Cutolo, a federal prosecutor charged yesterday.
Cutolo, a charismatic gangster Persico allegedly viewed as a threat to take over the crime family, disappeared without a trace in 1999.
"Bill Cutolo was not only murdered, Bill Cutolo was erased," Assistant Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Deborah Mayer told jurors in her opening statement.
"You will not see any body here, no DNA, no fingerprints, no gunshot wounds. Persico is no amateur."
The prosecutor said Cutolo wasn't missing 24 hours before Persico and co-defendant John (Jackie) DeRoss were searching for the dead man's hidden loot.
DeRoss even interrogated members of Cutolo's crime crew about whether the cash he gave them "smelled of dirt or mildew," Mayer said.
Although defense lawyers conceded there is a Colombo crime family, Persico, 52, and DeRoss, 69, weren't dressed like gangsters for the jury, choosing bland Mr. Rogers-type sweaters instead of expensive suits.
Their lawyers argued there was no proof that Cutolo was dead and denied either defendant had a motive to kill him.
Persico and DeRoss, who assumed Cutolo's rank of underboss, face life in prison if convicted of the charges.
Originally published on September 26, 2006
GangstersInc - September 28, 2006 10:36 AM (GMT)
I JUST COULDN'T WHACK MY PAL
By ZACH HABERMAN
September 27, 2006 -- A mob underling testified yesterday he was asked to kill William "Wild Bill" Cutolo for acting Colombo crime-family boss Alphonse "Allie Boy" Persico - but couldn't bring himself to whack his good friend.
Joseph Campanella recounted how Persico's second in command, John "Jackie" DeRoss, asked him to turn on his friend just weeks before Cutolo went missing in May 1999.
"Jackie DeRoss asked me how I would feel about killing Billy," Campanella said. "I just put my head down and shook my head."
"I just can't believe he would ask me that," he said.
A couple of weeks later, DeRoss ordered Campanella to a meeting with him and Persico, where he was told during the 20-minute sit down that "Bill had to go."
Their reasoning, Campanella testified, was that Persico was on his way to prison on a gun-possession charge, which would leave Cutolo in charge.
"They were afraid Billy wouldn't give [control of the family] back to Allie Boy," Campanella said.
Persico and DeRoss, the current acting underboss, are on trial in Brooklyn federal court on charges of murdering Cutolo - whose body was never found - and then trying to intimidate his family into staying mum about the gangland rubout.
They are also charged with a botched hit on Campanella.
"I was hit twice," said Campanella, a former soldier who was shot in the arm and foot as he was getting into his car in Coney Island in July 2001.
"They had to take off one of my toes," said Campanella, who became a mob turncoat only after Persico tried to have him whacked out of fear he would flip and talk about Persico's role in Cutolo's disappearance.
Prosecutors say Campanella was targeted for death because of his loyalties to Cutolo, who was part of a rival faction that challenged the ruling authority of Persico and his father - Colombo boss Carmine "The Snake" Persico - during a bloody civil war in the early 1990s.
"Bill and I were like two brothers," said Campanella, 47. "There was a lot of friendship."
GangstersInc - October 6, 2006 08:27 PM (GMT)
I dunno nothin'!
Mob guy suddenly gets amensia
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
A key witness in the trial of reputed mob boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico came down with a sudden case of amnesia yesterday.
Given immunity from prosecution by the government, John Dileo was expected to provide testimony linking Persico, the reputed head of the Colombo crime family, to slain gangster William (Wild Bill) Cutolo.
But things quickly took an unexpected turn when Dileo showed up with a lawyer.
Then under questioning by Assistant Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Deborah Mayer, Dileo repeatedly had difficulty recalling events and details the way he did in 2004, when he testified before a grand jury.
That time, Persico wasn't there. Yesterday, he sat 20 feet from Dileo.
"Do you recall William Cutolo asking about Alphonse Persico?" the prosecutor asked.
"No," Dileo replied.
Mayer reached for the grand jury minutes and asked Dileo if he remembered testifying that Cutolo had asked him where "The Kid" was, referring to another Persico nickname.
"Oh, yeah, that was when we were walking out ..." Dileo recalled.
Dileo, 41, runs the day-to-day operations at Romantique Limousine on 85th St. in Dyker Heights, where financial records list Alphonse as secretary and his brother Michael Persico as vice president.
Before the grand jury, Dileo testified about a 1999 meeting Persico had with the owner of a Brooklyn catering hall who was being extorted by Cutolo.
Persico is charged with ordering Cutolo's murder.
Dileo also told the grand jury that a shopping bag Cutolo handed him was "heavy" - prosecutors contend it was filled with cash - but yesterday he said it was neither heavy or light.
He didn't remember when he saw Persico after the meeting, but he had told the grand jury it was either "the same day or definitely the next day."
Wiseguy Limo: Why didn't ya call before?
Heyyy. We got no limos. You got a problem with that?
Romantique Limousine, owned by reputed mobster Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico, may want to work on its customer relations.
The search engine newyorkcity.com offers this comment from a disgruntled customer: "They have their old uncle answering the phone who has no idea what the words 'customer service' or 'grace' are.
"Unfortunately they were unable to get a limo for me. Okay, I get that, but the rudeness is not needed. So use them if you don't mind being spoken to this way."
Despite the bad review, the company in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn, has grown from a seven-vehicle operation in 1983 to its current fleet of 30 vehicles, including a fancy bus outfitted with wood floors and a fiber optic starry ceiling, a 1949 Cadillac and stretch limos of every luxury variety you can shake a dipstick at.
Originally published on October 5, 2006
GangstersInc - October 7, 2006 11:13 AM (GMT)
Quiz capo timing of attorney visit
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Reputed Colombo crime boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico was sitting in his lawyer's office on the afternoon that a rival gangster was allegedly murdered on his orders, his attorney testified yesterday.
Federal prosecutors subpoenaed Persico's former mouthpiece Barry Levin to explain how his client happened to schedule the meeting on May 26, 1999 - at the precise time Colombo underboss William (Wild Bill) Cutolo vanished in Brooklyn.
Levin, testifying with immunity from prosecution, said Persico called about 9:20 p.m. on May 25 to make an appointment for the following day to discuss a pending case.
The defense lawyer turned over a copy of his daily calendar to the feds, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Seigel showed the jury that the notations for the meeting appeared to be written in two different inks.
"You certainly wouldn't come in here and lie for Mr. Persico?" defense lawyer Sarita Kedia asked Levin.
Federal Judge Sterling Johnson ordered Levin not to answer the question even though the prosecutor had not objected.
Levin also acknowledged hiring a private eye to question Cutolo's family because the feds had made no secret that Persico was a suspect in his disappearance. Colombo gangster John (Jackie) DeRoss met with the family members before the investigator arrived and allegedly tried to intimidate them.
DeRoss is also charged with Cutolo's murder.
Originally published on October 7, 2006
GangstersInc - October 8, 2006 08:52 AM (GMT)
Cop probed after thug testifies of Mafia tie
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
A rookie cop whose name surfaced during a high-profile Mafia racketeering trial is under investigation by the NYPD for his alleged mob ties, the Daily News has learned.
Police Officer Michael Volpicella, 35, was linked to the mob by a former Colombo crime family soldier testifying at the trial of the crime clan's acting boss, Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico.
Joseph (Joe Campy) Campanella, who became a government witness after he survived a rubout attempt allegedly ordered by Persico in 2001, testified in Brooklyn Federal Court that he and Volpicella, a former chiropractor, were once involved in a health care scam.
Volpicella gave up his practice and joined the NYPD in 2005.
Campanella, who owned a medical supply company called Savannah Medical, said Volpicella hired his wife and the wife and daughter of another Colombo soldier to work at his Brooklyn clinic.
Volpicella also reportedly caught a beating from the mob for some "horse playing" he engaged in with the daughter of the mob soldier in his office, according to Campanella.
A senior police official, who asked not to be identified, said a preliminary review of Volpicella's NYPD application file indicated he did not disclose any past relationships with criminals or members of organized crime.
The official said the Internal Affairs Bureau is examining Campanella's testimony about Volpicella, who is assigned to the 120th Precinct in Staten Island.
"Didn't Volpicella Chiropractic and Savannah Medical have a relationship where the insurance companies were defrauded, yes or no?" Persico defense lawyer Dale Smith asked on cross-examination Sept. 27 in Brooklyn Federal Court.
"Yes," Campanella replied.
Campanella denied his wife was hired in lieu of protection money from Volpicella.
"As far as collecting any money from Michael Volpicella, I never did," he testified. "If Michael Volpicella needed anything from me, of course I would have helped him. That would have been my friend."
In a telephone interview, Volpicella acknowledged he was a former chiropractor and knew Campanella, but denied committing any crimes.
"I never committed health care fraud in my life," he said. "If I committed health care fraud I'd be in jail."
Volpicella admitted he had been subpoenaed, but would not say whether it was for the Persico trial. He said he had been advised by his union delegate not to comment further.
Originally published on October 8, 2006
Hollander - October 13, 2006 12:30 PM (GMT)
Testimony: Gotti set off gang war
BY ANTHONY M. DESTEFANO
Newsday Staff Writer
October 13, 2006
The late Gambino crime boss John J. Gotti used to enjoy talking to friends about the machinations of Niccolo Machiavelli, the crafty 15th century Italian statesman and author.
According to the testimony Thursday of one turncoat mobster, Gotti made his own Machiavellian move and set off one of the city's bloodiest Cosa Nostra wars within the Colombo crime family.
Former Gambino crime captain Michael DiLeonardo, testifying in federal court in Brooklyn, said that Gotti fomented the 1990s infighting within the Colombo family -- which took at least 13 lives -- in order to gain more power on the mob's Commission, the ruling body of the five Cosa Nostra families in New York.
DiLeonardo, known as "Mikey Scar" because of a disfigured face, recently testified at the trials of Gotti's son, John A. Gotti, who has been tried three times on federal racketeering charges, with each case ending in mistrial.
Thursday, DiLeonardo was testifying for the government in the racketeering trial of Alphonse Persico, the reputed acting boss of the Colombo family. Persico is the son of elderly crime family boss Carmine Persico.
"John senior instigated the war," DiLeonardo said under questioning by Assistant U.S. Attorney Katya Jestin, referring to the genesis of the civil war in the Colombo crime family.
According to DiLeonardo, the elder Gotti favored mobster Vic Orena over the Persico faction in the dispute. Gotti's backing was pure power politics, DiLeonardo said.
"He would get another vote on the Commission," DiLeonardo said. Gotti was widely considered by investigators and mobsters to have had the allegiance of former Bonanno boss Joseph Massino.
Orena's vote would give Gotti a total of three Commission votes out of five.
Under questioning by Jestin, DiLeonardo explained that Gotti made trouble by telling Orena that Carmine Persico, who was in prison for life, was a "rat," or informant. From late 1991 through 1993, the resulting warfare led to the deaths of 12 gangsters and one innocent bystander, as well as the wounding of other mobsters, according to crime historians.
DiLeonardo, who was close to Gotti, said he interceded to cool the internecine feuding.
"I had to tell Allie it wasn't right, that his father is a boss," DiLeonardo said of Gotti's smear of Carmine Persico.
GangstersInc - October 17, 2006 01:49 PM (GMT)
Wimpfellas ran to mommy, thug sez
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Call these mafia hit men a couple of mama's boys.
A turncoat witness testified yesterday that he and an accomplice made detours to their mothers' homes before and after a botched rubout attempt in Brooklyn.
Reminiscent of the scene in "Goodfellas" when Joe Pesci's homicidal character stops at his mother's house for a shovel to bury a body stuffed in his trunk, Colombo soldier Vincent (Chicky) DeMartino paid a visit to his mother's house to pick up a larger caliber handgun, the witness testified in Brooklyn Federal Court.
DeMartino apparently had a last-minute brainstorm that the .38-caliber revolver he was packing was insufficient to carry out the killing of fellow Colombo gangster Joseph Campanella in 2001.
"Chicky said, 'Let's go get 'the big one,'" former Colombo associate Giovanni (John the Barber) Floridia said, referring to a more powerful .357 Magnum handgun.
Floridia, testifying at the racketeering trial of reputed boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico and underboss John DeRoss, who are charged with ordering Campanella's murder, waited outside DeMartino's mother's house in Bensonhurst while he rummaged around her basement for the Magnum.
As Campanella packed a beach chair into his car after sunning himself at Coney Island, DeMartino began blasting away but botched the job by merely winging him in the arm and foot.
Floridia, who had hoped to be inducted into the Colombo family for carrying out the hit, was so nervous afterward he made a beeline for his mom's house nearby.
"I needed to relax a bit and calm down," he told Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Seigel.
Originally published on October 17, 2006
Hollander - October 19, 2006 10:35 AM (GMT)
Mob moll was told: Fuhgeddaboud him
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Bette Ann Fox outside Brooklyn Federal Court yesterday. Mistress of William (Wild Bill) Cutolo cried on stand recalling mobster, who disappeared in 1999.
Shortly after Colombo underboss William (Wild Bill) Cutolo vanished, the mobster now charged with his murder paid a visit to the victim's goumada - and it wasn't a condolence call.
Instead, John (Jackie) DeRoss suggested that her married lover may have run off "to get away from everything and everybody," Bette Ann Fox testified yesterday in Brooklyn Federal Court
"Jackie DeRoss was telling me a story about someone going to Italy to get away, just disappearing to get away from his troubles," the attractive blond mistress said.
The roly-poly DeRoss, who was promoted to underboss immediately after Cutolo's May 26, 1999, disappearance, later gave Fox a gift of $100 for her daughter, and arranged a job interview for Fox at a hospital on Staten Island.
DeRoss and Colombo acting boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico are charged with ordering Cutolo's slaying to prevent him from taking over the crime family when Persico went to jail.
Fox, 41, dissolved in tears when she identified a photo of Cutolo beaming at their daughter at her First Holy Communion party. "We were family," she said.
Asked by prosecutor Deborah Mayer if Cutolo had ever missed his daughter's birthday or Christmas, she replied, "Never."
Persico's lawyer argued in court papers - but not to the jury - that Cutolo may be in hiding somewhere, living off his illicit millions with a girlfriend and their love child. Cutolo's wife and children are in the witness protection program.
Originally published on October 19, 2006
GangstersInc - November 4, 2006 10:59 AM (GMT)
Mistrial Is Declared in Mob Murder Case
By THE NEW YORK TIMES
Published: November 4, 2006
A federal judge in Brooklyn declared a mistrial yesterday in the murder and racketeering case of two men who prosecutors say were once the acting boss and underboss of the Colombo crime family.
The judge, Sterling Johnson of United States District Court, dismissed the jurors after concluding they were deadlocked.
One of the prosecutors, Thomas J. Seigel, an assistant United States attorney, said the government would retry the case against the men, Alphonse Persico, 52, and John DeRoss, 69, in the killing of a Colombo underboss, William Cutolo.
Sarita Kedia, a lawyer for Mr. Persico, whose father, Carmine, is the imprisoned boss of the crime family, said, “I had hoped for an acquittal, but it sure beats the other alternative.”
Both men are already in prison for money laundering and loan-sharking.
Another mob case mistrial
BY ANTHONY M. DESTEFANO
Newsday Staff Writer
November 4, 2006
After a five-week trial, a Brooklyn federal judge ordered a mistrial Friday in the racketeering case against reputed Colombo crime family mobsters Alphonse Persico and John DeRoss when the jury indicated it was deadlocked.
Judge Sterling Johnson terminated the trial after the panel, in its fifth day of deliberations, sent out a note about 2:30 p.m. saying it could not reach a verdict despite a final try at unanimity.
"The jury is deadlocked on all counts. We take the opportunity to apologize to the court," jurors said in the note to Johnson.
Three women on the jury dabbed at their eyes with handkerchiefs as Johnson thanked all of them for their service.
"Some matters can't be resolved," Johnson said in an apparent attempt to console those who were upset.
Sarita Kedia, Persico's attorney, said, "I had hoped for an acquittal given the evidence in this case, but it seems better than the alternative."
Persico, 52, who is known as "Allie Boy" and is the son of imprisoned legendary mobster Carmine Persico, once was considered by law enforcement officials to be the acting boss of the Colombo family. Since late September, he and DeRoss, 69, had been on trial on charges they were involved in the disappearance and presumed slaying of cohort William Cutolo in 1999. Cutolo was considered a rising star in the crime family when he vanished.
Persico and DeRoss also faced other charges involving crime family rackets. Both defendants remained in custody, as they already are serving sentences in other federal cases.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Tom Seigel said he plans to pursue a retrial, which would not occur until next year.
Strong indications of a mistrial emerged Thursday when a flurry of notes from the jury showed at least one juror didn't believe the various cooperating witnesses called by the government. Another note suggested three jurors were voting as a bloc, but it wasn't clear if they were for acquittal or conviction.
The mistrial was the second time recently that federal prosecutors in the city have been stymied in getting a conviction in a high-profile mob case. Last month, in federal court in Manhattan, a mistrial was declared in the racketeering trial of John A. Gotti, the son of the late Gambino crime boss John J. Gotti. It was the third mistrial in that case. The U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan said it would not seek another trial.
GangstersInc - November 4, 2006 11:00 AM (GMT)
Mistrial for reputed crime boss Allie Boy
A mistrial was declared yesterday in the racketeering trial of reputed Colombo crime boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico.
In a note to Brooklyn Federal Judge Sterling Johnson, the jurors said they were deadlocked after five days of deliberations. When they entered the courtroom, three jurors were weeping.
Persico, 52, and co-defendant John (Jackie) DeRoss, 69, were charged with ordering the 1999 murder of former underboss William (Wild Bill) Cutolo and the attempted murder in 2001 of another Colombo soldier. Cutolo's body was never found.
Prosecutor Thomas Seigel told the judge there will be a retrial. Persico, the son of jailed-for-life Mafioso Carmine Persico, was smiling broadly afterward and gave his lawyer Sarita Kedia a kiss on the cheek.
"I had hoped for an acquittal, but [a mistrial] sure beats the other alternative," Kedia said.
Cutolo's sister, Barbara DePalo, who attended most of the trial, left the courtroom without commenting.
Persico still has about five years to serve and DeRoss has 18 months left on prior convictions.
Originally published on November 4, 2006
GangstersInc - November 29, 2006 10:42 AM (GMT)
Wiseguy killed news story: feds
BY THOMAS ZAMBITO
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Wiseguy Chris Colombo allegedly extorted $15,000 from a pal to get an unflattering story killed before it appeared in an upstate newspaper, the government charged yesterday.
The son of legendary mob boss Joe Colombo set the price for keeping the story out of the Albany Times Union in 1997 or 1998, prosecutors said in papers filed in Manhattan Federal Court.
"Christopher Colombo said he had a hook in the newspaper," prosecutors Lisa Baroni and Jason Halperin wrote in a letter to Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald.
The story concerned a lawsuit filed against an unidentified Colombo associate by the state attorney general's office.
Colombo, 45, who starred in the short-lived HBO reality show "House Arrest" last year, later met the pal at a wedding and told him that he and his brother Anthony drove to Albany to handle it, according to the feds.
"I'd be shocked out of my socks that anyone at the Albany Times Union got money to downplay a story," the paper's current editor, Rex Smith, said yesterday. "I think this is idle boasting. It's hogwash."
The brothers go on trial early next year, accused of running a gang that specialized in extortion and loansharking.
Although the Times Union incident is not part of the case, prosecutors are asking Buchwald to let them introduce evidence of uncharged crimes to prove the brothers' long links to organized crime.
The Colombos' attorneys say it's unfair for prosecutors to link their clients to organized crime and the Mafia.
Originally published on November 29, 2006
Laurentian - December 13, 2006 05:10 PM (GMT)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 12, 2006
United States Attorney’s Office
COLOMBO ORGANIZED CRIME FAMILY SOLDIER AND TEN ASSOCIATES IN STATEN ISLAND CREW INDICTED ON RACKETEERING, ROBBERY, ASSAULT, FIREARMS, LOANSHARKING, GAMBLING, AND NARCOTICS DISTRIBUTION CHARGES
Albanian Organized Crime Associate Charged Separately With Marijuana Distribution Conspiracy
An indictment was unsealed this morning in federal court in Brooklyn charging Colombo organized crime family soldier MICHAEL SOUZA and associates ANTHONY SOUZA, MICHAEL BOLINO, NICHOLAS BRUNO, SHELTON WILLIS, EMANUEL RUTA, CHARLES FUSCO, DONATO DICAMILLO, CHARLES MCCLEAN, STUART DUGAN, and MICHAEL ARMINANTE variously with racketeering conspiracy, robbery conspiracy, bank robbery conspiracy, firearms possession, conspiracy to commit assault in aid of racketeering, cocaine base distribution conspiracy, marijuana distribution conspiracy, loansharking, and illegal gambling. The prosecution resulted in the disruption of an armored car robbery and a plot to murder a Bonanno crime family associate, and the apprehension of the leader of a home invasion crew responsible for a string of recent robberies in New York and Connecticut. As part of the same investigation, Albanian organized crime associate LULZIM KUPA was charged with marijuana distribution conspiracy in a separate indictment.
The charges contained in the indictments are merely allegations, and the defendants arepresumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
The charges were announced by Roslynn R. Mauskopf, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and John P. Gilbride, Special Agent-in-Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration, New York Field Division.
Ten of the defendants were arrested earlier today and are scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon before United States Magistrate Judge Steven M. Gold, at the United States Courthouse, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn, New York. The case has been assigned to United States District Judge Sandra L. Townes.
The indictments are the culmination of an eight-month investigation, and included wiretap interceptions of one of MICHAEL SOUZA’s cell phones and consensual recordings by a cooperating witness of SOUZA and numerous of the other defendants.
As set forth in the first indictment and a detention memorandum unsealed earlier today, MICHAEL SOUZA and his brother, Colombo crime family associate ANTHONY SOUZA, are charged with racketeering conspiracy, with predicate acts of marijuana distribution conspiracy, loansharking, and illegal gambling. The SOUZA brothers are also charged, along with defendants MICHAEL BOLINO and SHELTON WILLIS, with conspiracy in aid of racketeering by planning an assault on a Staten Island Bonanno crime family associate who had challenged MICHAEL SOUZA’s authority during a financial dispute between the Bonanno and Colombo crime families. In a threat issued directly by MICHAEL SOUZA, SOUZA told the Bonanno associate that SOUZA would “smash his f------ head in” and warned that the associate would not “see it comin’.” MICHAEL SOUZA consulted ANTHONY SOUZA about the assault, and ANTHONY SOUZA advised that they should launch a surprise attack – a “jack in the box.” ANTHONY SOUZA and others used electronic databases to attempt to locate the Bonanno associate’s home address, and the SOUZA brothers and others discussed using a tracking device with GPS-capability to locate the Bonanno associate through his cell phone usage. The SOUZA brothers later dispatched defendants BOLINO and WILLIS to try to surveil the Bonanno associate at a Staten Island restaurant and bar. Various audio recordings of the defendants made during the investigation revealed that the perpetrators planned to wear masks during the assault, and that MICHAEL SOUZA possessed a handgun while planning the assault.
More recently, the assault plot matured into a plan to murder the Bonnano associate. Toward that end, MICHAEL SOUZA purchased a silencer and tested it. The DEA seized the silencer today while executing a search warrant on SOUZA’s car.
In addition, the SOUZA brothers are charged with conspiring with defendants BRUNO, FUSCO, MCCLEAN, and ARMINANTE to distribute marijuana, and are also charged, along with defendant EMANUEL RUTA, with operating a lucrative sports betting business. Today, DEA agents seized two firearms from BRUNO’s residence, including a defaced shotgun, and seized a quantity of marijuana and a semi-automatic handgun from FUSCO’s residence.
BOLINO, a long time Colombo associate who has prior federal and state robbery convictions, is also charged with conspiring to rob an armored car that was scheduled to deliver over $200,000 in cash to the Richmond County Savings Bank, located on Hylan Boulevard in Staten Island. As part of the robbery, BOLINO and others planned to “mace” employees of Princeton Armored Car services, remove the cash delivery bag, and transfer the bag of cash to an associate waiting nearby on a motorcycle. Based on information from a cooperating witness, DEA was able to disrupt the plot by dispatching a large number of agents to the bank just prior to the time of the planned robbery.
WILLIS, the leader of a violent interstate home invasion gang, is charged with two recent robbery conspiracies, during which he, or other gang members, possessed firearms. During one of the robberies in Staten Island in August 2006, WILLIS and DUGAN impersonated New York City Police officers while attempting to rob a house of money they believed a deceased union employee had left there. WILLIS and DUGAN assaulted a female care-giver at the house, and then fled, using police scanners successfully to evade local law enforcement. Defendant DICAMILLO provided WILLIS and DUGAN with the tip that money from a labor union was located in the house. In the second charged robbery, which occurred later in August 2006, WILLIS and others invaded a home in Ansonia, Connecticut, in search of narcotics and money. During the robbery, two of the individuals at the address were pistol whipped, with one of the victims suffering a skull fracture. Today, DEA agents seized a police scanner, burglary tools, and other evidence while executing a search warrant at WILLIS’s residence.
WILLIS is also charged, along with defendant MCCLEAN, with conspiring to distribute crack cocaine.
KUPA, who has a prior federal narcotics felony and is on supervised release from that conviction, is charged in the second indictment with conspiring to distribute more than 100 kilograms of marijuana during 2006. During the investigation, DEA agents intercepted a shipment of approximately 60 pounds of marijuana destined for KUPA, and wiretap intercepts revealed that KUPA was conspiring to distribute and distributing even larger amounts of marijuana. In addition, a cooperating witness recorded KUPA admitting to a recent assault of a narcotics trafficker whose house KUPA had previously burglarized.
“The public can be assured that those who participate in organized criminal activity will be brought to justice and held accountable,” stated United States Attorney Mauskopf. “The investigation and prosecution of organized crime continues to be a priority of this office.” Ms. Mauskopf thanked the Staten Island District Attorney’s Office and the Ansonia Police Department for their cooperation and assistance in the investigation.
DEA Special Agent-in-Charge Gilbride stated, “Throughout Staten Island these individuals were acting like pirates. They trafficked drugs, they robbed people, they carried guns. It is the DEA’s focus to stop the violence associated with drug trafficking and put these people behind bars. This is yet another example of the extent the greedy will go to in order to reap the money that is proliferated throughout the drug trade.”
If convicted of all charges, MICHAEL SOUZA faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 30 years’ imprisonment and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, ANTHONY SOUZA faces a maximum sentence of 48 years’ imprisonment, MICHAEL BOLINO and SHELTON WILLIS face a sentence of mandatory life imprisonment, CHARLES MCCLEAN faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, STUART DUGAN faces a mandatory minimum sentence of seven years’ imprisonment and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, EMANUEL RUTA and DONATO DICAMILLO face a maximum sentence of 20 years’ imprisonment, NICHOLAS BRUNO, CHARLES FUSCO, and MICHAEL ARMINANTE face a maximum sentence of five years’ imprisonment, and LULZIM KUPA faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney John Buretta.
MICHAEL ANGELO SOUZA
GangstersInc - January 5, 2007 06:38 PM (GMT)
Comptroller seeks review of NYC golf contract, alleging mob ties
January 4, 2007
NEW YORK (AP) _ A $9.6 million contract for the operation of a Brooklyn municipal golf course will be reviewed after the city's comptroller expressed concern about the contractor's possible relationship with a reputed mobster.
In a letter this week, Comptroller William Thompson urged the Parks Department to reconsider the 20-year deal to East Coast Golf to operate the 18-hole Marine Park Golf Course. The contract was awarded in January 2006.
Thompson cited federal court papers that referred to the company president, Dominick Logozzo, and his financial relationship with a relative of the reputed mobster, Craig Marino.
Marino was one of 10 reputed mobsters indicted on racketeering conspiracy charges in an alleged stock fraud scheme that bilked investors of more than $20 million. Federal prosecutors described Marino as a violent "soldier in the Colombo family."
Logozzo, who was not charged, did not immediately return calls for comment. His brother, Rocco Logozzo, told the New York Post that any allegations of mob ties were "outrageous" and "shocking."
In pretrial documents filed in March, Marino's lawyer, Joseph Corozzo, said that Logozzo loaned Marino's father nearly $50,000 to invest in the Zone Diet company.
The Parks Department said the golf course contract was awarded before the indictments were filed and that a full background check was conducted. However, because of the concerns raised by the city comptroller, the Department of Investigation and the Law Department will review the contract.
Hollander - January 18, 2007 11:26 AM (GMT)
Colombo's bad boys go on trial
BY THOMAS ZAMBITO
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
An infamous piece of Mafia history - the 1971 hit on Joe Colombo - will be resurrected this week when two of his sons go on trial for allegedly carrying on the family business.
Anthony and Christopher Colombo are accused of extortion and loansharking - threatening bodily harm and worse to debtors - as part of a racketeering conspiracy.
Pretrial hearings show the sons learned a few lessons from their father, who used to stage Italian-American unity rallies where he denounced the Mafia as a myth.
The sons' attorneys have attacked prosecution attempts to mention La Cosa Nostra or their link to the man who gave the Colombo crime family its name - and who was gunned down at a Columbus Circle rally.
"If evidence that Mr. Colombo is the son of Joseph Colombo Sr. and that his father was ultimately murdered ... the jury will readily infer that Mr. Colombo too was involved in organized crime," Christopher's lawyer Jeremy Schneider wrote to the judge.
Federal prosecutors say the Colombos wore out their welcome in the crime family and created a violent offshoot called the Colombo Brothers Crew that wasn't shy about reminding deadbeats of their Mafia ties.
The defendant dropped the Colombo name to "help instill fear in loansharking victims," prosecutors Lisa Baroni and Jason Halperin wrote in court documents.
Christopher Colombo, 45, has also displayed his father's sense of showmanship, appearing in a short-lived HBO documentary called "House Arrest."
Originally published on January 16, 2007
GangstersInc - January 19, 2007 08:29 PM (GMT)
Lawyer: 2 only guilty of being mobster's sons
The only thing Anthony Colombo is guilty of is being the son of a notorious mob boss, his attorney told jurors yesterday.
Colombo and brother Christopher are facing extortion and loansharking charges in Manhattan Federal Court.
"There is no doubt that Anthony Colombo and Christopher Colombo are sons of Joe Colombo," lawyer Louis Fasulo told jurors during opening statements. "That's a fact. That's who [Anthony Colombo] is."
Federal prosecutors say Anthony Colombo shook down Dominick Fonti, owner of a midtown Manhattan construction company called EDP, for $100,000.
But Fasulo said Colombo just agreed to bring in business for Fonti - and held up his end of the deal.
Christopher Colombo is accused of running gambling operations in the Bronx and East Harlem. His attorney denied he ever threatened anyone for cash.
Joe Colombo was gunned down by a petty thief at an Italian-American Unity rally at Columbus Circle in 1971 and died several years later.
Originally published on January 19, 2007
GangstersInc - January 20, 2007 05:02 PM (GMT)
Mob talk's out at Colombo trial
Legendary mob boss Joe Colombo always claimed there was no such thing as the Mafia.
And even though he has been dead for decades, his sons scored one for their old man yesterday in Manhattan Federal Court.
There will be no mention of the mob at the racketeering trial of Anthony and Christopher Colombo, Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald ruled yesterday.
Buchwald agreed with attorneys for Anthony and Christopher Colombo that prosecutors failed to link the two to the Colombo crime family that bears their father's name or to a violent offshoot called the Colombo Brothers Crew.
Chris Colombo is accused of running gambling operations in the Bronx and East Harlem, and his brother is accused of shaking down a midtown Manhattan construction firm for cash. Both are accused of invoking the Colombo name to intimidate debtors into paying their bills.
Originally published on January 20, 2007
GangstersInc - January 26, 2007 07:50 PM (GMT)
I couldn't refuse Colombo
Contractor Dominick Fonti says he knew it was time to pay up when Anthony Colombo looked him square in the eye and asked for his money.
The two were having lunch at a midtown diner when Colombo asked if he was having trouble keeping up with his payments, Fonti testified at Colombo's racketeering trial in Manhattan Federal Court.
"When someone looks at you in your eyes and makes that statement ... I had no other option but to say, no, I have no problem making the payments," Fonti told jurors.
Fonti says he was well aware that Colombo was the son of the legendary mob boss Joe Colombo and feared what would happen if he stopped making payments. Joe Colombo was gunned down at an Italian-American unity rally in 1971.
Prosecutors say Anthony Colombo extorted $100,000 from Fonti, who owned a midtown construction firm called EDP. Colombo attorney Louis Fasulo says Colombo earned the money by drumming up business for EDP.
Originally published on January 26, 2007
Hollander - February 20, 2007 02:17 AM (GMT)
Mobster May Have Seduced Brooklyn Investigator Assigned to Protect Him
2:48 p.m. EST February 19, 2007
NEW YORK - An investigator for the Brooklyn District Attorney's office has resigned amid allegations she got "too close" to a mafia associate she was assigned to protect, WNBC.com has confirmed. The mob-linked con artist allegedly tried to seduce the investigator during the time she was assigned to guard him while he was holed up at a hotel for questioning as a cooperating witness. The Brooklyn D.A.'s office wanted to know if the con artist had any information about former FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio and allegations DeVecchio years ago leaked information to Colombo boss Greg Scarpa. Scarpa, known as "The Grim Reaper", killed numerous rivals and investigators want to know if Scarpa got inside information from agent DeVecchio. DeVecchio has denied any wrongdoing. A spokesman for D.A. Charles J. Hynes confirms investigator Maria Biagini, a 15-year veteran, resigned last week but declined further comment. Sources say the FBI is now looking into Biagini's interactions with the convicted cooperator - including whether the two had an improper affair and whether she gave the convict special privileges during the time he was cooperating. Attempts to reach Biagini for comment were unsuccessful. Investigators say their suspicions were raised when they learned Biagini was sending letters to the informant after his cooperation ended and he was returned to prison. One source familiar with the case say the con-artist had no information to help with the ongoing investigation into DeVecchio. The story of the possible affair was first reported by the New York Post.
Hollander - February 28, 2007 11:24 AM (GMT)
Happy Colombos' day
Famed mob boss' sons win mistrial over red-faced feds
BY THOMAS ZAMBITO
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Manhattan federal prosecutors got whacked again in another big-name mob case.
And this time, it wasn't a Gotti who walked - it was two Colombos.
Brothers Christopher and Anthony Colombo, sons of the late mob boss Joe Colombo, avoided conviction on most counts in a wide-ranging racketeering conspiracy charging them with extortion and loansharking.
Anthony was acquitted of the conspiracy charges and Christopher scored a mistrial after jurors deadlocked 10 to 2 in favor of acquittal. The lone convictions came for Christopher Colombo on two lesser gambling charges, which had been expected.
Lawyer Jeremy Schneider admitted Colombo was a gambler and a bookie with operations in the Bronx and East Harlem and encouraged jurors to convict him.
Schneider said Colombo faces months in prison on the charges. "I just want to go home and hug my kids," Colombo said.
The onetime star of the HBO reality show "House Arrest" was accused of forcing a loanshark victim to pay $600,000 in vig - mob talk for interest - on a $90,000 loan.
Outside the courtroom, he grabbed the jury foreman in a bear hug and playfully patted him down, mocking the witness stand claims of a crooked contractor who said Colombo once did the same to him.
Anthony Colombo said prosecutors unnecessarily tossed their father's name into the case to sway jurors against him and created the name Colombo Brothers Crew to smear them even further.
"My father's been dead for 37 years," Anthony Colombo said. "What was it for, if not to taint the jury?"
Joe Colombo was gunned down at a Columbus Circle rally in 1971 as he took to the streets with a high-profile campaign to accuse the government of tarring law-abiding Italian-Americans with supposed links to the Mafia.
Prosecutors have not decided whether to retry the Colombos on the deadlocked charges.
Among them was a claim that Anthony Colombo shook down the owner of a Manhattan construction firm for $100,000.
"It's a great day," said Anthony Colombo's attorney Louis Fasulo.
Jurors deliberated for nine days after 21 days of testimony but the foreman said there was little budging two male jurors who held out for conviction from the start.
"We can't go into people's heads and change their minds," said the foreman, Fred, who asked to be identified by his first name only.
After the verdict was delivered, jurors continued deliberating and decided to acquit Anthony Colombo of charges he shook down the Manhattan contractor, the foreman said.
But by then Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald had declared a mistrial on most counts and sent the jury home.
Originally published on February 28, 2007
GangstersInc - April 1, 2007 03:44 PM (GMT)
SITE UPDATE: Added a profile of Colombo acting boss Joel "Joe Waverly" Cacace:http://gangstersinc.tripod.com/JoelCacace.html
GangstersInc - April 16, 2007 08:25 PM (GMT)
Three reputed Colombo members plead guilty to conspiracy
BY ANTHONY M. DESTEFANO, Newsday Staff Writer
April 13, 2007
A reputed Colombo crime family captain and two associates pleaded guilty Friday to federal conspiracy charges in an extortion case that involved a Howard Beach man who has since become an informant against the mob.
Joseph Baudanza, 62, of Brooklyn, a reputed Colombo captain, admitted to Brooklyn federal Magistrate Cheryl Pollak that he was part of a racketeering conspiracy that involved shaking down stock brokers and owners of a Staten Island business.
Also pleading guilty Friday to the same conspiracy charge but different extortion allegations were reputed Colombo soldier Craig Marino, 37, and associate Robert Podlog, 33, of Staten Island.
The three men were among 10 people charged last year in a case involving allegations that members and associates of the Colombo, Lucchese and Bonanno crime families were taking part in boiler room stock fraud schemes. Among those charged at the time was Vincent Rossetti, who has since become a key government witness in a series of indictments involving the Bonanno crime family and a plot to extort his wife Yvonne. Vincent Rossetti pleaded guilty earlier in the case, according to federal court records.
On Friday Baudanza, Podlog and Marino each admitted during their guilty pleas that they were part of various extortion conspiracies, most involving stock brokers and their firms. The original indictment charged that the firms in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Staten Island were sold the public stocks with inflated prices. Investors lost an estimated $20 million, officials said.
Defense attorney Joel Winograd said his client was happy to get the case behind him and move on with his life. Baudanza faces about 4 years in prison when he is sentenced later this year.
Podlog "has turned his life around in a positive way," said his attorney, Michael Rosen. Podlog faces about 7 years and now works in real estate.
The attorney for Marino, who faces 10 years, couldn't be reached for comment.
Legal sources familiar with the case said other defendants could plead guilty next week. Plea negotiations were continuing with lawyers for reputed Bonanno soldier Ronald Giallanzo of Howard Beach, said the sources.
Vincent Rossetti was charged with just one extortion count in the original March 2006 indictment. But last summer Rossetti decided to cooperate with federal prosecutors after his wife became the target of an apparent mob plot shakedown.
Yvonne Rossetti, who hasn't been charged, also became a controversial figure in the Howard Beach. In various court filings, investors and attorneys have charged she swindled them out of millions of dollars in real estate deals and other financial transactions. Both Rossettis have left their Howard Beach home with their four children.
Laurentian - April 18, 2007 11:33 AM (GMT)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 17, 2007
United States Attorney’s Office
SEVEN MEMBERS AND ASSOCIATES OF THE COLOMBO AND LUCHESE ORGANIZED CRIME FAMILIES PLEAD GUILTY TO RACKETEERING AND EXTORTION IN CONNECTION WITH BOILER ROOM STOCK FRAUD SCHEMES
Roslynn R. Mauskopf, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, announced the guilty pleas of Colombo Family captain JOSEPH BAUDANZA, his brother, Colombo Family soldier CARMINE BAUDANZA, Colombo Family soldier CRAIG MARINO, Colombo Family associates CRAIG LESZCZAK, ROBERT PODLOG, and ARTHUR GUNNING, and Luchese Family soldier JOHN BAUDANZA, the nephew of JOSEPH BAUDANZA. The guilty pleas today of CARMINE BAUDANZA and JOHN BAUDANZA before United States Magistrate Judge Cheryl L. Pollak represent the sixth and seventh defendants to plead guilty in this district within the past week.
On March 23, 2006, an indictment was unsealed charging the defendants with wide-ranging criminal activity, including a racketeering conspiracy involving securities fraud, extortion, witness tampering, kidnaping, and money laundering. All but GUNNING, who pled guilty to extortion, have pleaded guilty to a Colombo family racketeering conspiracy that used extortion to make money from stock manipulation at several brokerage firms. When sentenced, each defendant faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years’ incarceration and a $250,000 fine.
The guilty pleas are the culmination of a four-year investigation and prosecution of the Colombo Family’s infiltration of brokerage firms that specialized in selling “penny” stocks, or stocks of a corporation that traded for under $5. The defendants admitted to exploiting their ties to the racketeering enterprise to further their financial interests in the criminal schemes, by using extortionate tactics to control brokers, cold callers, and others affiliated with branch offices of brokerage firms formerly located in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Staten Island, including Ash Financial Corporation, Amerivet Dymally Securities, Inc. (later known as TYM Securities, Inc.), Barron Chase Securities, Inc., Grady and Hatch & Company, Inc., Couch and Company, Inc., L.H. Ross & Company, Inc., and Yankee Financial Group, Inc.
“We are committed to eliminating the corrupting influence of organized crime from the financial community and to ensuring the legitimacy of our securities markets, ” stated United States Attorney Mauskopf. “Investors are entitled to a level playing field.” Ms. Mauskopf thanked the Federal Bureau of Investigation (New York Field Office), United States Securities and Exchange Commission, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (New York), and the National Association of Securities Dealers, Department of Enforcement, for their extensive assistance in the investigation.
The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Patricia E. Notopoulos, Tanya Y. Hill, and Jennifer E. Schantz.
Hollander - May 11, 2007 10:13 AM (GMT)
New York mobster, 90, is arrested again
By LARRY McSHANE - Associated Press Writer
NEW YORK --A 90-year-old Colombo crime family leader who rubbed elbows with Frank Sinatra and other celebrities during his heyday was arrested for associating with known mobsters, his fifth parole violation in 25 years, the FBI said.
John "Sonny" Franzese was arrested Wednesday when he appeared for a regularly scheduled visit with a probation officer, said Jim Margolin, an FBI spokesman.
It was the fifth parole violation for Franzese. Among the others: He was jailed for three years after a November 2000 meeting at a coffee shop with three Colombo family associates. Another time, he spent two years behind bars after federal agents watched him enjoying a bowl of spinach soup with mob associates at a restaurant.
Margolin had no details this time on where Franzese had violated his parole or what he might have been eating or drinking at the time.
Franzese was being held in jail and was to appear in court next week. He didn't have a lawyer, Margolin said.
Despite his age, Franzese reportedly ascended to Colombo underboss two years ago after family boss "Big Joey" Massino was convicted of racketeering and became a federal witness. Massino, who spent 14 years running the family, became the first sitting boss of one of New York's five Mafia families to flip.
But Franzese was involved in organized crime long before Massino's ascension. He was a fixture at the Copacabana nightclub, where he often spent time with Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr., according to Jerry Capeci, author of several books on organized crime and operator of the Web site ganglandnews.com. Franzese also had a financial stake in the legendary porn movie "Deep Throat."
Franzese's parole restrictions continue through 2020, when he would be older than 100. It was unclear how much prison time he might face on the parole violation.
Since going to jail in 1970 for a bank robbery, Franzese had spent more than two decades - on and off - behind bars. He was initially paroled on that charge in 1978, and the first of the parole violations was in 1982.
Franzese wasn't the only aging mobster in court Wednesday. Matthew "Matty the Horse" Ianniello, 86, was sentenced in New Haven, Conn., to two years in prison for racketeering conspiracy and tax evasion. The case was part of a federal probe of the trash hauling industry in Connecticut and New York.
Hollander - May 11, 2007 10:22 AM (GMT)
Judge overturns '80s conviction in NYC mob-related shooting
By TOM HAYS
Associated Press Writer
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May 10, 2007, 6:36 PM EDT
NEW YORK -- A judge on Thursday threw out a murder conviction in a mob-related slaying of a record store owner after two Mafia turncoats told investigators that the wrong man was serving a life term for the crime.
Despite the decision by Justice Guy J. Mangano in state Supreme Court in Brooklyn, prosecutors insisted Carmine Carini was involved in the 1983 shooting.
"We have great respect for Judge Mangano," District Attorney Charles Hynes said in a statement. "However, we fully intend to retry this case."
Carini, 47, remained jailed on $500,000 bail while awaiting the possible retrial for second-degree murder.
Prosecutors have told Carini, who has served more than two decades behind bars, that he can avoid a retrial and go free by pleading guilty to manslaughter and receiving a sentence of time served, said his attorney, Ron Kuby.
Kuby said his client, who maintains his innocence, was torn over whether to accept the plea deal. The lawyer called the offer "an attempt by the district attorney to avoid acknowledging what everybody knows: They have made a terrible, tragic mistake."
The victim, Verdi Kaja, was shot three times in the back of the head on Nov. 18, 1983, while sitting in the front passenger seat of a stolen car that had picked him up in front of his apartment building.
A jury convicted Carini, charged as the lone gunman, in 1985 after Kaja's relatives testified that they had seen him drive away with the victim; he was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.
In 2004, a federal prosecutor informed the district attorney's office that two "reliable" mob cooperators _ Lucchese crime family associate Frank Smith and Gambino associate Salvatore "Fat Sal" Mangiavillano _ had recently told investigators that Carini's cousin Vincent was the killer. Vincent Carini was killed in 1987 in another notorious gangland case.
At a hearing in February on a defense motion to vacate the conviction, Smith testified that Vincent had told him that he had shot Kaja in the head while another man _ not his cousin _ drove the car. Vincent said he decided to knock off the record store owner after the victim threatened to turn him in to authorities for not paying back thousands of dollars in loans.
Mangiavillano also took the witness strand to describe how one day he found Vincent weeping outside his mother's home.
"I asked him what was the matter, and he told me, 'My cousin Carmine just got convicted for a murder that I did,"' he testified.
Asked why he didn't encourage Vincent to help Carmine Carini by telling the truth about the shooting, Mangiavillano explained that the mob code of silence forbade it.
If Vincent "ratted on himself, he is a rat," he said. "If I tell him to do that, I'm a rat."
The judge ruled that the turncoats' statements could be used at a second trial. If the retrial goes forward, prosecutors would test a new theory: that Carmine Carini was the driver of the car and Vincent was the shooter.
Authorities say Vincent and his brother Eddie were the gunmen in a mistaken mob hit in 1987 on a 78-year-old judge whose son, a former prosecutor, was the intended target. The brothers were slain later that year for botching the job, their bodies wrapped in pink sheets and left in the back seats of cars parked in Brooklyn.
The acting boss of the Colombo crime family pleaded guilty in 2004 in the slaying of the judge, George Aronwald, whose son, William Aronwald, is a former state and federal prosecutor.
GangstersInc - May 17, 2007 05:19 PM (GMT)
'95 tip on mob hit just lost in 'ether'
Thursday, May 17th 2007, 4:00 AM
A Brooklyn judge slammed prosecutors yesterday for letting a tip about a high-profile mob murder "disappear into the ether" a dozen years ago.
The slip could prompt Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Gustin Reichbach to throw out a murder indictment against John Sinagra, 39. Sinagra was charged last year with shooting 18-year-old Patrick Porco in May 1990 after Mafia boss Greg Scarpa learned the teen might rat out his son Joseph in a separate killing.
But defense attorneys argue that investigators knew as early as 1995 that Sinagra was a suspect - and by waiting so long to arrest him, they're denying him the chance to mount a vigorous defense.
Investigators for District Attorney Charles Hynes blamed the NYPD for not pursuing the tip from small-time mobster John Novoa, a childhood friend of Sinagra who said he confessed to the hit.
The case was revived after the arrest of former FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio, who is accused of tipping off Greg Scarpa.
Nancie L. Katz
Hollander - June 1, 2007 09:14 AM (GMT)
Mob guy: Whack indictment
BY NANCIE L. KATZ
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Thursday, May 31st 2007, 4:00 AM
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An alleged mob hit man wants his 2006 indictment on charges he whacked a teenage boy thrown out, claiming prosecutors failed to investigate the 17-year-old shooting properly.
Defense attorneys for Craig Sobel, accused of shooting dead Dominic Masseria, 17, after a Halloween 1989 egg fight went awry in Bensonhurst, took prosecutors and police to task yesterday during a pretrial hearing for Sobel in Brooklyn Supreme Court.
Sobel, 42, was extradited last year from Florida, where he was working as a fishing captain, after an accomplice in Masseria's murder wore a wire to implicate him.
Sobel killed Masseria on the orders of Joey Scarpa, the son of mobster-turned-FBI informant Gregory Scarpa, prosecutors said.
Both prosecutor Jeffrey Leavitt and NYPD Detective Joe Piraino admitted they didn't pursue Sobel in 1990 even though his accomplice, Reyes Aviles, fingered a "Craig" as the shooter. They argued they couldn't pursue an indictment on the word of Aviles, a co-defendant. Two other alleged accomplices, Greg Scarpa Jr. and Patrick Porco, were slain soon afterward.
"There was no evidence absent Aviles telling us what happened," Leavitt told defense lawyer Bruce Barket.
Piraino said he interviewed Sobel right after Masseria's murder but didn't "consider him a suspect."
"What steps did you take to identify the shooter?" asked Barket.
"None," Piraino retorted.
Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Gustin Reichbach, who's hearing the Sobel case, blasted prosecutors in another mob-related case last week for failing to act on information 12 years ago that would have implicated John Sinagra in Porco's May 1990 murder. Retired FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio is accused in Porco's death for allegedly telling Gregory Scarpa that Porco was about to rat on Joey Scarpa in Masseria's murder.
Hollander - June 12, 2007 09:06 AM (GMT)
Blasting cops, judge frees hit man suspect
BY WILLIAM SHERMAN and NANCIE L. KATZ
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
Tuesday, June 12th 2007, 4:00 AM
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John Sinagra, accused of killing a teen in a 1990 mob-related murder, was set free yesterday.
A man accused of killing a teen in a 1990 mob-related murder was set free yesterday after a judge blasted prosecutors and police for "negligence" and "unreasonable delays."
"I'm all choked up. I just want to go home," said John Sinagra, clutching a Bible as he walked out of Brooklyn Supreme Court a free man for the first time since he was nabbed 15 months ago in the May 1990 murder of 18-year-old Patrick Porco.
In a 27-page opinion tossing out the indictment, Supreme Court Justice Gustin Reichbach did not declare Sinagra innocent. Instead, he slammed investigators for failing to act on tips 12 years ago from at least three witnesses who fingered the limo driver.
Sinagra attorney Joseph Giaramita had asked that the case be dismissed because it was too old for him to mount a vigorous defense.
But prosecutors retorted they didn't have evidence to indict until 2005, when deceased Mafia informant Greg Scarpa's live-in girlfriend, Linda Schiro, backed up statements by other mobsters fingering Sinagra, who had since moved to Las Vegas.
William Sherman and Nancie L. Katz
Hollander - June 12, 2007 09:38 AM (GMT)
SLAY RAP KO'D IN 'MOB FED' SHOCKER
JUDGE BLASTS 'TOO LATE' COPS AND B'KLYN DA
By ALEX GINSBERG
FREE MAN: John Sinagra (above), co-defendant in the Lindley DeVecchio case, leaves court yesterday after murder charges against him were dropped.
June 12, 2007 -- A Brooklyn judge yesterday tossed out cold-case murder charges against a co-defendant of alleged rogue FBI Agent Lindley DeVecchio, slamming cops and prosecutors for waiting 16 years to follow up on a tip.
"Negligence is not good cause," said Justice Gustin Reichbach in announcing his decision to spring John Sinagra, 38, following 15 months in jail.
"The People have failed to meet their burden that there was good cause for this lengthy 16-year delay. As a consequence of this unreasonable delay, the defendant's due process rights have been violated."
After the ruling, Sinagra, who until his March 2006 arrest worked at a limousine service in Las Vegas, stood up at the defense table and walked out of Brooklyn Supreme Court.
"I just want to go home," he said.
The decision is a major setback to the Brooklyn DA's Office and its prosecution of DeVecchio, a retired FBI supervisory special agent accused of helping orchestrate four murders by funneling inside information to Colombo mobster Gregory "The Grim Reaper" Scarpa.
The Sinagra case, an offshoot of the DeVecchio probe, focused on the May 27, 1990, shooting death of Patrick Porco, a buddy of Scarpa's son Joey.
Prosecutors alleged that DeVecchio tipped off Gregory Scarpa to the fact that the 18-year-old Porco was a possible informant. Armed with this information, the mobster ordered his son to rub out Porco, and sent along Sinagra, his nephew by marriage, to assist, prosecutors said.
Both Scarpas are now dead, but prosecutors were ready to present three witnesses who claimed they'd heard Sinagra speak of his role as triggerman.
Then, during a pretrial hearing last month, the case unraveled.
First came evidence that one of those witnesses, longtime informant Jay Novoa, had fingered Sinagra as early as 1995. Inexplicably, police never followed up on the lead.
"The failure to do so was negligent and unreasonable," wrote Reichbach in his decision.
Also damaging were revelations that another witness, Linda Schiro, the longtime girlfriend of Gregory Scarpa and the expected star witness against DeVecchio himself, had spoken with the FBI in 2001 and with her then-biographer, Sandra Harmon, a year earlier.
The decision came just three days after Sinagra turned down a last-ditch 2- to 6-year plea deal.
As for DeVecchio, 67, he still faces trial at the end of the summer for his alleged role in the Porco killing and three other homicides.
Hollander - June 27, 2007 09:21 AM (GMT)
Mobster's Son Guilty of Fraud
Wednesday June 27, 2007 3:16 AM
NEW YORK (AP) - A scion of the Colombo crime family who beat most of a racketeering case earlier this year resolved the rest of the charges Tuesday by pleading guilty to one count of fraud.
Anthony Colombo, a son of the late mob boss Joseph Colombo, faces between 12 and 18 months in jail as a result of the plea bargain, his lawyer said.
The fraud involved a $30,000 no-show job that Colombo arranged for an associate at a New York construction company.
Prosecutors had originally built a much more ambitious case against Colombo and his brother, Christopher. The pair were initially indicted on charges that they had created a new gangland crew involved in a range of illegal schemes, but the case largely fell apart last February.
A jury acquitted the brothers of the most serious charges. Christopher Colombo was convicted of running an illegal gambling business. Jurors deadlocked on a racketeering conspiracy count. That portion of the case against Anthony Colombo was dismissed Tuesday as part of the plea deal.
Colombo's lawyer, Aaron Goldsmith, said he would ask a judge for a lenient sentence.
``He has very severe health conditions. He's 62 years old. He has severe diabetes,'' Goldsmith said.
Colombo spent three years under house arrest while the case was pending.
Hollander - August 16, 2007 04:14 PM (GMT)
Mobster's son claims G-man tip led to hit
BY NANCIE L. KATZ
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Thursday, August 16th 2007, 4:00 AM
The son of dead Mafia informant Gregory Scarpa admitted to investigators he helped kill a mob moll after former FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio tipped off his dad that she might be an informant, a detective said yesterday.
But Gregory Scarpa Jr. - a likely witness against DeVecchio in his murder trial - said he was surprised that Mary Bari, 31, the paramour of former Colombo boss Alphonse (Ally Boy) Persico, would rat on anyone, said retired NYPD Detective Tommy Dades.
"Gregory Scarpa Sr. told Gregory Scarpa Jr., 'She's gotta go,'" Dades quoted the son as telling prosecutors this year. "Gregory Jr. was very shocked at that because Mary Bari was a standup girl and no one thought she would ever cooperate."
In a pretrial hearing, Dades, a key prosecution investigator, yesterday detailed how the mobster son of DeVecchio's informant linked the G-man to two of four murders ordered by his dad.
Scarpa Jr. is serving life in prison for his own lengthy résumé as a mob murderer.
Tops on that list was the 31-year-old Bari.
Dades said the younger Scarpa told him and prosecutors that at his dad's orders, he went to "see" the leader of their crew, Anthony (Scappy) Scarpati.
"When Greg Jr. told Scappy what was asked by Gregory Sr., Scappy said they were going to go to hell for killing a girl," he quoted him as saying. "He said he was going to go up the chain of command!"
Investigators believe Scarpa Sr. shot Bari dead at a Brooklyn social club in September 1984 as the son held her down.
DeVecchio is charged with helping Scarpa whack four enemies, including Bari and teenager Patrick Porco, during the Colombo family wars in the 1990s.
But he has asked Supreme Court Justice Gustin Reichbach to throw out the case, charging prosecutors improperly used testimony he gave under immunity during a 1994 federal corruption probe and at a 1997 postconviction hearing for Mafia boss Victor Orena.
Hollander - September 26, 2007 09:12 AM (GMT)
Boot tainted FBI guy's legal eagle, Brooklyn DA demands
Wednesday, September 26th 2007, 4:00 AM
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Rogue FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio could be forced to find another lawyer on the eve of his blockbuster murder trial if Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes gets his way.
Prosecutors yesterday asked a judge to boot defense lawyer Douglas Grover from the case so they could call him as a witness against his own client.
"I want to put Mr. Grover on the stand," lead prosecutor Michael Vecchione told state Supreme Court Justice Gustin Reichbach. Vecchione said he wanted Grover out because of a meeting the defense lawyer had years ago with a star prosecution witness.
DeVecchio, 66, was indicted last year for allegedly helping mobster Gregory Scarpa Sr. carry out four murders in the 1980s and '90s.
Scarpa, who has since died, was an FBI informer. His ex-girlfriend Linda Schiro is the star witness who met with Grover 15 years ago during a Justice Department probe that cleared DeVecchio.
"Their point is that Schiro is a blatant liar," said Vecchione, adding that Grover met with Schiro and helped influence her.
Grover scoffed at the allegation. He called it tit-for-tat because he had successfully forced two prosecutors off the case.
"Removal of counsel on the eve of trial ... the prejudice would be extreme," said Reichbach, who reserved decision.
The trial is scheduled to get underway next month.
Hollander - September 29, 2007 11:58 AM (GMT)
Accused rogue FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio won't have to find a new lawyer now that a judge has rejected prosecutors' bid to put his attorney on the stand.
Brooklyn assistant district attorneys wanted to ask lawyer Douglas Grover about a conversation he had more than a decade ago with a key witness in DeVecchio's upcoming murder trial.
Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Gustin Reichbach ruled yesterday that the meeting had "little significance" and that swearing in the attorney would be too much of a "drastic step."
Hollander - October 30, 2007 09:52 AM (GMT)
Colombo gangster claims he had BB gun during beatdown
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Tuesday, October 30th 2007, 4:00 AM
Another reason that the Mafia as we once knew it is dead: A reputed Colombo crime capo claims he was brandishing a BB gun - not a real firearm - during a brutal beatdown of two men suspected of plotting a robbery of his Long Island social club.
During a bail hearing Monday for gangster Michael Uvino, prosecutors played a tape secretly recorded by an informant who was present during the attack last month in which the ratcheting of a handgun can be heard amid the victims' screams and pleas for mercy.
But defense attorney Michael Washor insisted the defendant was simply packing BBs in his arsenal, adding that Uvino was willing to take a lie detector test.
Federal Judge Jack Weinstein was skeptical.
"I've never heard a Mafia member carrying a BB gun," Weinstein said. "Maybe they do so now."
The unidentified victims told the FBI that they saw ammo clips inserted into two handguns Uvino had brought to the club in a plastic bag.
Uvino, 42, and two other thugs brutally beat the victims while attempting to extract the names of the shotgun-toting bandits who had made off with $40,000 from an illegal card game on Sept. 4 at the club on Wellwood Ave. in Lindenhurst in Suffolk County.
The robbery was never reported to police, but the club's operators apparently concluded that the two victims, who played in the card games at the club, were connected to the stickup.
"I was trying to hit him with that f------ chair ... Catch him with the metal part across his neck," Uvino later told the informant, identified as mob associate Gaetano Fatato.
"All I did was f------ hurt my wrists," Uvino added.
If convicted of carrying a real gun, an additional sentence of seven years would be tacked on to run consecutively to whatever sentence Uvino might receive in the beating, Washor said. Prosectors said that a grand jury also is weighing additional charges against Uvino.
Uvino is being held in custody while the feds appeal Weinstein's decision to free Uvino on $2 million bail and confine him to his parents' home in Little Neck, Queens.
GangstersInc - November 6, 2007 11:19 AM (GMT)
Missing gangster's wife to testify against accused killer
By JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Tuesday, November 6th 2007, 4:00 AM
Fresh out of the witness protection program, the widow of missing gangster William (Wild Bill) Cutolo will testify for the first time against her husband's accused killer - Colombo acting boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico, the Daily News has learned.
Marguerite (Peggy) Cutolo could take the stand as soon as today at Persico's retrial in U.S. District Court in Central Islip, L.I., where Persico and former underboss John (Jackie) DeRoss are charged with orchestrating the murder because they believed Wild Bill was trying to take over the Colombo family.
The widow did not testify at their trial last year that ended in a hung jury. She went into the witness protection program with her children in 2001, but last month prosecutors disclosed that she was no longer in the program.
William Cutolo vanished on May 26, 1999, after he had been summoned to a meeting with Persico in the vicinity of 92nd St. and Shore Road in Bay Ridge. His body was never found.
While in hiding, Marguerite Cutolo erected a tombstone above an empty grave at Cemetery of the Resurrection on Staten Island in memory of her slain husband.
Marguerite Cutolo is expected to challenge the defense theory offered at the last trial that Cutolo might still be alive.
Yesterday, prosecutor John Buretta also asked the judge to prohibit any reference by the defense to ex-FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio, whose indictment for helping an informant commit murders during the Colombo civil war was tossed out of state court last week.
GangstersInc - November 7, 2007 10:26 AM (GMT)
Colombo mob war without end 6 yrs. after 'truce'
BY JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Wednesday, November 7th 2007, 4:00 AM
Reputed Colombo crime boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico allegedly waited six years after the truce in a bloody gang war to exact revenge against a powerful rival, a prosecutor charged Tuesday.
Fearing former underboss William (Wild Bill) Cutolo was poised to take over the crime family in 1999, Persico put a hit on the charismatic gangster.
"The Colombo war never really ended, at least not in the minds of men like Alphonse Persico," Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Goldberg said in his opening statement in Persico's racketeering and murder trial.
Cutolo vanished without a trace May 26, 1999, after he was dropped off at Shore Parkway and 92nd St. in Bay Ridge.
His successor as underboss, John (Jackie) DeRoss, is also on trial for allegedly helping carry out the killing.
A trial last year ended in a hung jury.
Cutolo's widow, Marguerite, is scheduled to testify today for the first time that her husband told her that he was supposed to meet Persico on the afternoon he was last seen alive.
Defense attorney Sarita Kedia ridiculed the government's revenge theory as "preposterous" and suggested that Cutolo might still be alive.
"Mr. Persico was one of the few people who got along with Mr. Cutolo," Kedia said.
"There is not a single piece of evidence to prove to you that Billy Cutolo is even dead," Kedia added.
Cutolo's daughter, Barbara Jean, also is expected to testify about DeRoss warning family members not to implicate Persico in Wild Bill's disappearance.
Hollander - November 14, 2007 12:27 PM (GMT)
Mob widow Peggy Cutolo fingers Colombo boss
BY JOHN MARZULLI and CORKY SIEMASZKO
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
Wednesday, November 14th 2007, 4:00 AM
Peggy Cutolo testifies at the trial of John DeRoss (left) and Alphonse Persico.
The widow of wiseguy William (Wild Bill) Cutolo did Tuesday what prosecutors wanted her to do - she placed Colombo crime boss Alphonse Persico at the center of the crime.
Then things started unraveling for Marguerite (Peggy) Cutolo when defense lawyers suggested her husband was still alive and that she had stashed away up to $2.7 million in loanshark profits.
"I'm not lying," a visibly upset Cutolo said in Federal Court in Central Islip, L.I. "I've been distressed and depressed for eight years because I don't know where my husband was. My husband would have never run away."
She left witness protection to testify against (Allie Boy) Persico and former underboss John (Jackie) DeRoss, who are charged with her husband's murder - and whose first trial ended in a mistrial. Prosecutors say the gangsters orchestrated the murder because they believed Wild Bill was trying to take over the Colombo family.
Under questioning from prosecutors, Peggy Cutolo insisted her husband kept nothing from her. On the day he vanished, she said, "I knew he was meeting Allie Boy."
She said Cutolo's meeting with Persico in Bay Ridge on May 26, 1999, was unusual because on Wednesdays he usually visited his union office in Manhattan, got his weekly haircut at Bruno's in Bensonhurst, and dined with his crew at the Friendly Bocce Club in Brooklyn.
Cutolo was DeRoss' best man at his wedding. After he disappeared, DeRoss was more concerned about finding the piles of cash Cutolo stashed in their Staten Island mansion than finding her husband, the widow testified.
Peggy Cutolo admitted she hid $1.65 million in an air conditioning vent and moved it when the AC went on the fritz and the repairman - DeRoss' nephew - came to fix it. She said she took the money with her when she went into witness protection in February 2001.
"My husband told me, 'If anything happened to me, you give them nothing,'" she testified.
When DeRoss' lawyer, Robert LaRusso, produced ledgers indicating Cutolo had $2.7 million at the time of his disappearance, the flustered widow explained her husband kept two sets of books - one for Colombo money, one for his money. "I just know what I counted," she said.
Asked what happened to the cash, Peggy Cutolo said, "The government let me have the money. I had to take care of the kids."
GangstersInc - November 18, 2007 11:04 AM (GMT)
Former Islander, with alleged mob ties, gets 10 years for stock scam
by Staten Island Advance
November 16, 2007
A one-time Richmond Valley resident was sentenced earlier today in Brooklyn federal court to 10 years behind bars and fined $100,000 for his role in a mob-controlled stock scam that allegedly raked in more than $20 million.
Craig Marino, 37, was part of a wide-ranging Colombo crime family racketeering conspiracy that manipulated stocks through extortion between 1994 and 2005, prosecutors said.
Marino will remain in home confinement until formally surrendering to authorities in January to begin his prison term, said Robert Nardoza, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office for the Eastern District of New York.
The defendant moved to Florida last year from Staten Island, according to letters from his lawyer and family included in court records, although those documents also reflect current ties to the borough.
Marino was among 10 alleged mobsters affiliated with the Colombo, Luchese and Bonanno organized crime families who bullied brokers and strong-armed unwitting investors into buying bogus stocks.
They were accused in March 2006 of secretly controlling more than a dozen branch offices of brokerage firms. The companies were based mostly in Manhattan. However, one of the brokerages allegedly infiltrated was Great Eastern Securities, Inc. in Bloomfield. Rosebank resident, John Baudanza, another defendant, also helped create a phony business called America's Hedge Fund, L.P. in Eltingville.
In their classic "pump-and-dump" scheme, the defendants purchased vast quantities of low-prospect stocks, then cold-called investors and tricked them into buying in and driving up the price. The defendants then sold off their holdings to make tidy profits, prosecutors said.
Those who resisted were intimidated.
Most of the defendants have cut deals, including Marino and Baudanza, 37, a reputed Luchese crime family soldier.
The two men pleaded guilty in April to racketeering conspiracy charges, Nardoza said. Baudanza, who is free on bail, is to be sentenced Nov. 28.
Prior to yesterday's sentencing, Marino's wife, in-laws and neighbors on Staten Island wrote to Chief Judge Raymond J. Dearie appealing for leniency.
Debbie Marino said her husband turned his life around after the death of his brother, Lance, in a 2000 car crash, and is a devoted spouse and father.
"Craig has changed and I know, for certain, that Craig would not involve himself in any other criminal activities in the future," she wrote in August, listing her address in Richmond Valley.
Marino's lawyer, Joseph Corozzo of Manhattan, could not immediately be reached yesterday for comment.
In addition to prison time, Dearie sentenced Marino to three years' supervised release.
GangstersInc - December 2, 2007 11:02 AM (GMT)
Hollander - December 5, 2007 11:52 AM (GMT)
Colombo boss may call cleared G-man Lindley DeVecchio to testify
By JOHN MARZULLI
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Wednesday, December 5th 2007, 4:00 AM
Former G-man Lindley DeVecchio may return to court as a defense witness for Colombo crime boss Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico, the Daily News has learned.
DeVecchio, 67, was cleared last month of orchestrating four gangland murders with informer Gregory Scarpa after a key witness was snared in a web of lies.
Defense lawyer Sarita Kedia wants to call the retired agent as an organized crime expert Monday to testify about the bloody Colombo war of the early 1990s. Scarpa was aligned with Colombo boss Carmine (The Snake) Persico - Allie Boy's father - against a rival faction.
Alphonse Persico is charged with ordering the 1999 murder of underboss William (Wild Bill) Cutolo as payback for backing the other faction.
In a letter to prosecutors, Kedia said she will question DeVecchio about "the identities, positions and affiliations of certain individuals involved in the war."
It's unclear if prosecutors will try to keep DeVecchio off the stand. "If he's subpoenaed and the government permits him to testify, he will testify truthfully," DeVecchio's lawyer Douglas Grover said.