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

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Youngest Son Of Joe Colombo Plans Reality Show

Christopher Colombo is finally getting a taste of "The Real World."
After serving a year in prison for running a lucrative gambling operation, the youngest son of the late mob boss Joseph Colombo says he's changing his ways and living on the up and up.
And he's shopping a reality show about his transformation.
"What I do is not acting. Laurence Olivier I am not," Colombo said as he looked over his 11-acre estate in upstate Orange County. "My thing isn't acting, it's humor. And my life is already made for TV."
Colombo has been preparing for his next act for more than five years - his every move recorded by producer Chris Gambale, whose father was a World War II buddy of Colombo's dad.
The plan is to pitch the show once Colombo finishes his 12 months of federally supervised release this month.
Tentatively called "An Honest Living," the show would detail how the 48-year-old Colombo moves from the high life of running a $200,000-a-week illegal betting operation to being a working stiff with a 9-to-5 legit job.
"The government tried to make it sound like I never held a real job. I did. Ran two construction companies, did restaurants," Colombo said.
"They were all connected in one way or another to what I call my 'monkey business,' the gambling ... which I gotta admit, [was the] greatest life in the world."
The show would feature him and his new entourage, including Elvis impersonator Sebastin D'Amico, who doubles as a nanny to his and his wife Suzanne's two kids, Catrina and Joseph.
D'Amico is also the hapless caretaker of the family's two miniature horses, goat, chickens, peacocks, cats and koi fish. The ever-expanding menagerie includes one standard-issue New York City pigeon, for the urban touch.
"He's no stool pigeon," Colombo noted dryly, as the goat stole the food bin from D'Amico and led him on a chase around the paddock. "How could this not be on TV?"
Colombo said he has plenty of experience being before the camera - and on tape.
He was in the government's crosshairs - first from then-state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, and then the feds in the Manhattan U.S. attorney's office - for more than a decade.
All were convinced Colombo and his older brother, Mafia soldier Anthony Colombo, started a crew when dissension split the ranks after their father was shot.
Christopher Colombo - never accused of being a made man - was indicted with his brother and 17 others in 2004 on racketeering and loansharking charges.
Colombo said he was upfront from the start. He would admit to running a gambling operation, because he did, but said he never hurt anyone, never loansharked or extorted and said his gambling gig wasn't a mob enterprise.
A jury agreed: It convicted him on gambling in 2007 but acquitted him on loansharking, and hung on the rest.
Federal Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald, saying prosecutors never proved their claims that Colombo was a "danger to the community," sentenced him to a year and a day.
"She was fair," he said. "After all those years, she knew what the deal was."
He might have gotten straight probation, if it hadn't been for his earlier brush with Hollywood.
Colombo starred in a 31-minute HBO special in 2005 called "House Arrest," an inside look at how he spent his time awaiting trial.
The show - which chronicled Colombo's trips to a friend's strip club, dentist and favorite Chinese restaurant - infuriated prosecutors, who thought it mocked them and the law. Buchwald, though not pleased with the drama, refused to revoke his bail.
Colombo was free to leave his Washingtonville, N.Y., compound at 7 a.m. daily, but had to return by 9 p.m.
While Buchwald reminded Colombo she didn't care for the show, she told him she wasn't trying to cramp his acting career.
"If Hollywood wants him, that's fine," she said.


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