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

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Junior Gotti pleads not guilty to new murder charges

John "Junior" Gotti pleaded not guilty today to new murder charges that could have brought him the death penalty for allegedly ordering the rub-out of two Queens drug dealers more than a decade ago.
Prosecutors didn't say why they took execution off the table for the mob scion, who sat silently in Manhattan federal court as defense lawyer Charles Carnesi entered the plea for him.
Carnesi also tried to get Gotti, 45, sprung on bail pending his Sept. 14 trial, but Magistrate Gabriel Gorenstein refused to hear arguments after the prosecution said the judge in Gotti's case had twice turned down his release.
Outside court, Carnesi said the new charges -- which cover killings that were already part of a pending racketeering conspiracy charge -- showed that the feds are worried about beating Gotti's claim that he quit the mob in 1999.
That defense led to hung juries in three earlier trials of the Gambino family heir.
Radio host and "Guardian Angels" founder Curtis Sliwa, who survived a 1992 shooting allegedly ordered by Gotti, said he was disappointed the Justice Department opted against seeking capital punishment.
"I would have preferred we put the juice in this guy's caboose," Sliwa said.



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