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

Friday, September 18, 2009

Junior Gotti's lawyers listen when boss suggests jury picks for upcoming trial

Starting his fourth trial in five years, one-time mob boss John A. (Junior) Gotti knows a thing or two about juries.

The Mafia kingpin used his experience Wednesday to help defense lawyers seat the anonymous panel that begins hearing his murder and racketeering case Monday.

"He's an intelligent guy," said defense lawyer Charles Carnesi after the dozen jurors were chosen. "He's got an opinion. Obviously, we considered his input."

With the eight-week trial looming, the 45-year-old mob scion was "anxious" for yet another day in court, Carnesi said. His three previous racketeering cases have ended in mistrials.

One potential juror on Wednesday discovered the fastest way to get whacked from the jury pool: mentioning a mob murder scenario.

The juror was bounced after saying friends had warned him a guilty verdict against Gotti would come with a death sentence.

"Forget it - you'll get a bullet in the head," the juror said, quoting his friends as Gotti shook his head in disbelief at the defense table.

Judge Kevin Castel quickly intervened: "I don't think that is going to happen."

The juror, a writer, explained that he wasn't afraid of being gunned down over the verdict, but was still sent packing.

In addition to the 12 jurors, a half-dozen alternates were chosen.


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