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

Sunday, August 9, 2009


A union big who landed a hug from Mayor Bloomberg after endorsing his re-election bid was indicted yesterday for allegedly taking hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes in a mob-tainted scandal.

The overall $10.5 million scheme, allegedly headed by carpenters-union leader Michael Forde, dubbed illicit cash payments "turkey" as it was being "delivered" to some of its participants.

Bloomberg -- who included video of the union's Forde-led endorsement on his re-election Web site -- called the arrests of the leader and nine others "sad" and "a surprise."

"I don't know whether any of the charges that I read about this afternoon are true or not. I will leave that to the courts," the mayor said.

Forde, 54, was among eight carpenters union officials and a contractors' representative accused by the feds of pocketing a total of $1 million in bribes.

The powerful executive secretary-treasurer of the Carpenters Union District Council beat an unrelated bribery rap last year after his previous conviction was overturned on appeal.

According to yesterday's 29-count, Manhattan federal court indictment, Forde and the others took cash and gifts -- including Super Bowl tickets -- to let contractors hire illegal aliens, pay union workers off the books and avoid making millions in payments to pension and other benefit funds.

The scheme also involved alerting the contractors to job-site inspections by an independent investigator assigned to monitor the long-troubled union as part of a 1994 move to root out corruption and mob influence.

According to the feds, Forde received "numerous cash payments" totaling "hundreds of thousands of dollars" from the head of an unidentified drywall company between 2000 and 2004.

Another union member, shop steward Michael Brennan, allegedly told the head of the drywall company "that he never shared the cash bribes he received . . . with Forde or [John Greaney, president of Local 608] because he knew the 'turkey' had already been 'delivered' to them," according to the indictment.

Several defendants were also charged with perjury, including Joseph Olivieri, a reputed Genovese crime family associate, nd executive director of the Wall, Ceiling and Carpentry Association of New York.

He's accused of lying under oath in 2007 about his relationship with reputed Genovese crime family captain Louis Moscatiello Sr., including a claim that he "never met with him."



Post a Comment