Updated news on the Gambino, Genovese, Bonanno, Lucchese, and Colombo Organized Crime Families of New York City.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Bonanno captain sentenced to 14 years in prison and must sell Queens mansion

A Brooklyn federal court judge unleashed her wrath Wednesday on a defense attorney for victim blaming, before sentencing her Bonanno-capo client to 14 years behind bars for a loansharking scheme that terrorized a Queens neighborhood for nearly 20 years.
Defense attorney Elizabeth Macedonio invoked the fury of Chief Judge Dora Irizarry as she attempted to plead for leniency for Ronald Giallanzo, by saying some of the extortion victims knew what they were getting into.
“That’s like saying a prostitute who is out there selling her body might get raped, but what’s the difference,” the judge said with rage in her voice. “As they say, ‘you sleep with dogs, you get fleas.’ But that doesn’t excuse the offense.”
Irizarry also likened Giallanzo, the nephew of notorious Bonanno capo Vincent Asaro — who the feds have claimed was the mastermind behind the notorious Lufthansa air cargo heist depicted in “Goodfellas” — to “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.”
“You threatened to have people beaten with bats, you had them beaten with pipes, it’s like in the movies. But this isn’t a movie,” she said.
Giallanzo and a gaggle of cohorts were arrested in March 2017 on charges of racketeering, kidnapping, robbery, attempted murder and other counts.
Prosecutors said the 48-year-old acting capo ran a gambling ring and extortion racket in Howard Beach that spanned from 1998 — and multiple stints behind bars for Giallanzo — to his arrest in 2017.
In one instance, Giallanzo and an unidentified associate dragged a victim into a car and beat the man until he soiled himself, while the wiseguy screamed, “Where’s the f–king money?”
Giallanzo, nicknamed “Ronnie G,” pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy in March, and admitted to extorting five different people. On Wednesday, he told the court he would likely miss the marriages of his children and the deaths of his parents, saying, “I can blame no one but myself.”
Meanwhile, prosecutor Lindsay Gerdes called him a “puppeteer,” who despite prison time hadn’t learned his lesson.
She also accused him of trotting out his hands-on work at Ground Zero, which left him with cancer, as a ploy for sympathy whenever he got into trouble.
“He argued the same thing before,” Gerdes said. “When does time wash that out?”
While Irizarry acknowledged the “good” the mobster did after Sept. 11, she agreed “there should have been a point of reckoning,” before citing that he’d risen within the ranks of the Bonanno family following his first prison sentence.
“I have to wonder, what does it take,” she said. “I don’t know you can pull away from this, Mr. Giallanzo. I think it’s ingrained in who you are.”
She then offered a warning to his four children before imposing her sentence, softly saying: “It is better to live a humble life than one spent constantly looking over your shoulder.”
Though federal sentencing guidelines recommended Giallanzo land at most just over seven years prison, she slapped him with 12 years. She also imposed two more years for violating his supervised release.
As sobbing kin fled the gallery, the red-faced man turned toward the remaining loved ones and mouthed “I’m sorry.”
As part of the sentence, Giallanzo was also forced to forfeit $1.25 million and sell the Howard Beach mansion he built with his ill-gotten gains. He also owes $268,000 in restitution to five loansharking victims.
The sprawling home is still on the market, Macedonio told reporters, saying the proceeds from the home would cover restitution in addition to forfeiture.
“It was excessive,” the defense attorney said as she left. “We’ll certainly be pursing his right to appeal.”
Giallanzo’s family and friends declined to comment as they left court, tears still streaming down their cheeks.


Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Genovese soldier ordered to forfeit cash and spend two years in prison

A Staten Island man who authorities said helped run a mob family's racketeering and gambling operations is $125,000 in the hole after a federal judge ordered him to forfeit that amount of cash to the government.
The forfeiture was part of Steven Pastore's sentence, which also included two years in prison and two years' supervised release, authorities said.
In February, the defendant pleaded guilty in Manhattan federal court to racketeering conspiracy.
Two years earlier, in May 2016, Pastore was among 18 suspects charged with racketeering activities allegedly carried out by the Genovese organized crime family.
Pastore, a "made" member and soldier in the family, conspired with others from 2008 through the spring of 2016 to participate in the Genovese's criminal affairs, said Manhattan federal prosecutors.
Members are "made" when they show the ability to generate income for the family "and/or the willingness to commit acts of violence," according to an indictment filed against the defendants.
Pastore was charged with racketeering conspiracy and participating in an illegal gambling business, authorities said.
Prosecutors said wire taps showed Pastore had been in the gambling business for years.
In court filings, authorities said evidence revealed Pastore was paid more than $125,000 in the gambling operation.
However, Vivian Shevitz, Pastore's lawyer, contended in court papers the government had "misconstrue(d)" his role in the gambling business. She maintained he was only involved for four months, from September 2014 to January 2015.
Shevitz said Pastore had worked as a plumber for 35 years until becoming completely disabled in 2009.
Pastore, who public records indicate lives in Arden Heights, has a history of gambling crimes.
In 2005, he was charged in New Jersey federal court with racketeering and pleaded guilty to participating in an illegal gambling business run by the Genovese family, said the indictment.


Sunday, August 12, 2018

Infamous Chicago mobster The Clown makes plea of innocence from jail

http://www.ipsn.org/mob_arrests-2005/clown_011406_285.jpgAn infamous Chicago mobster has made a new plea of innocence. Joey "The Clown" Lombardo has been behind bars for more than a decade serving a life sentence after being found responsible for 10 mob murders.
Thursday a letter he wrote to a federal judge was made public.
Lombardo rose through the ranks of the outfit in the 1970s and ‘80s.  He was a senior citizen by the time he was convicted in the “Family Secrets” case and sent to prison nearly 11 years ago.
In the letter he claims to have a frail body and mind.  Not so frail that he couldn't recount names, dates and details of the murders and mob actions he's been connected to and explanations why it wasn't him.
Lombardo also wrote that he's spent six of the past 12 years in prison segregation and only allowed to make one phone call a month.
He named five powerhouse Chicago lawyers and firms he said he'd like to represent him on his next appeal and is hoping the letter to the judge helps open some doors.


Thursday, August 9, 2018

Kanye West's sneakers are mentioned during Russian mob trial in Brooklyn

Kanye West got an unexpected mention Wednesday during a Russian mob trial in Brooklyn, where it was revealed that one accused gangster was obsessed with the rapper’s footwear.
Government cooperator Renat Yusufov testified he knew a photo of accused racketeer Leonid “Lenny” Gershman was taken in 2016 because Gershman sported high-top “Yeezy Boost 750 OG” sneakers, available only by raffle that year. He said they cost up to $1,500.
Gershman allegedly ran an extortion, loan-sharking, gambling and drug ring in Brighton Beach and Coney Island.


Sunday, August 5, 2018

Man who robbed Girls Gone Wild creator says he did so on behalf of Genovese family

“Girls Gone Wild” creator Joe Francis won’t be attending Aug. 14’s book signing at the Diesel bookstore in Los Angeles.
“What Is Real: The Life and Crimes of Darnell Riley” is the story of the man who broke into Francis’ home in 2004, filmed a humiliating blackmail video and arranged for payment so that the video didn’t go viral.
Riley, who says his real name is Riley Perez, was arrested the following year after Paris Hilton discovered he was responsible. He pleaded guilty to robbery and attempted extortion, and in exchange charges for burglary, kidnapping for ransom and carjacking were dropped. He served nine years in California prisons, partly with Charles Manson.
The motive wasn’t money, said Riley, who claims he worked for bookmakers under legendary Genovese crime boss Matty “The Horse” Ianniello, who died in 2012.
“I was asked to rough him up,” Riley told me. “I worked with guys, if they told you to do something, you don’t ask questions.”
Riley says he has no beef with Francis, who has been living in Mexico with Abbey Wilson and their twin 3-year-old daughters.
“He was the victim. I was the perpetrator,” Riley said. “There’s no vendetta. The book is not about exacting revenge.”
Francis had no comment, but a friend wondered, “What about the ‘Son of Sam’ law? Why is this violent [man] allowed to profit from his crimes?”


Thursday, August 2, 2018

Feds bust Genovese mobster for 21 year old Yonkers murder

A reputed mobster was busted Thursday in connection with the cold-case slaying of a 29-year-old Yonkers man, authorities said.
John Tortora Jr., 61, is accused of hiring goons to kill Richard Ortiz more than 20 years ago as part of a plot to expand the power of the Genovese crime family, federal prosecutors said.
Ortiz was stabbed multiple times on Nov. 11, 1997.
“The arrest of John Tortora should remind everyone that justice delayed is not justice denied,” said FBI Assistant Director William Sweeney Jr.

Tortora was charged with conspiracy to commit racketeering, murder in aid of racketeering and murder for hire. If convicted, he faces mandatory life in prison or the death penalty.
Federal prosecutors say the suspect, who went by Johnny T, committed a wide range of crimes over the last 21 years — including murder, extortion, gambling and drug trafficking.
Tortora was arrested in Yonkers. He was expected to appear in court Thursday afternoon, according to the Office of U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman.


Wednesday, August 1, 2018

After convincing judge prison food is toxic to his health Bonanno consigliere chows down on hot dog

This is one way to make prosecutors mangia crow.
A day after convincing a judge that the food in jail was so bad for him that he needs to be let out on bail, reputed mobster John “Porky” Zancocchio stuck it to the feds by stepping out of a Manhattan lockup and downing a carb-and-cholesterol-filled, food-cart hot dog.
“Keep the change,” the 60-year-old reputed gangster told the elated vendor Tuesday as he handed him a $20 bill, telling him to keep the change for the $2 frank, which was slathered in mustard and sauerkraut.
When asked how the dirty-water delicacy tasted compared to his jail-house meals — which he claimed aggravated chronic diabetes and thyroid issues — Zancocchio summed it up in one word: “Excellent!”
Zancocchio, who is believed to have served as both a capo and consigliere in the Bonanno family, will face trial next year on loansharking and bookmaking charges.
He had been free on $1 million bail until last February, when he was tossed into Manhattan’s Metropolitan Correctional Center for violating the terms of his house arrest by visiting two Staten Island Italian restaurants and a bakery without permission from the court.
He had only been let out of the house to attend his aunt’s funeral.
But on Monday, Zancocchio convinced a judge — over the strong objection of prosecutors — that he should be let back out until his trial because the food in jail is killing him.
“The dietary regimen at the MCC, which consists nearly entirely of sugar and carbohydrates, dangerously exasperates his condition,” his lawyer John Meringolo claimed in papers.
At Monday’s hearing Meringolo said Zancocchio’s problems require him to get exercise and decent food. To the feds‘ surprise, Judge Alvin Hellerstein agreed to his release.
“Don’t violate it!” the judge said. “No, your honor, no,” Zancocchio replied.
And then he promptly downed a 280-calorie dog — which has roughly 17.5 grams of fat, 850 mg of sodium, 45 mg of cholesterol and 24 grams of carbs without even counting the sauerkraut. Zancocchio told The Post his first real meal will be “a nice steak.” But he’ll eat it at home per his GPS-monitored bail.
“I’m on home confinement,” he said. Asked what was the worst thing he ate in prison, Zancocchio joked: “They didn’t feed me so I had to eat a waterbug.”
He later added that it was really accidental.
“It went in my food. There’s a lot of waterbugs,” he said of the downtown Manhattan prison.