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

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

New Book Reveals Vito Rizzuto Hinted He Was Only One Able To Keep Peace In Montreal

Vito Rizzuto did not leave quietly.
In August 2006, the reputed head of the Mafia in Montreal opened up to two investigators escorting him in a car to Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, where an airplane was waiting to fly him to New York to face charges in a racketeering case, a new book, Mafia Inc., reveals.
Normally a man of few words, at least publicly, Rizzuto seemed to sense his organization would spiral out of control in his absence after a 30-year reign at the top levels of the city’s underworld.
“Switching from Italian to English as if he were speaking one language, Rizzuto asserted to the two investigators that he was the only person able to maintain a relative peace among the diverse criminal organizations in Montreal, as if he wanted to convince them they were making a serious error in extraditing him to the United States,” authors André Cédilot and André Noël write in the French-language book, an exhaustive examination of Rizzuto’s rise to power and the problems his organization is experiencing.
Rizzuto would end up receiving a 10-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to the racketeering case, which involved the 1981 murders of three mobsters in Brooklyn, N.Y. He is to return to Canada in 2012, but what remains of his organization won’t be the same – and, according to the book, during that car ride in August 2006, Rizzuto seemed to realize this.
He advised the investigators to keep an eye on Montreal street gangs, whose members now appear to be causing the Mafia serious headaches.
The insider’s glance into the trip to the airport is one example of the details Noël, a reporter at La Presse, and Cédilot, who retired from the newspaper this year after 35 years of reporting, use to shed light on the highest levels of the organization.
But during a news conference yesterday to launch Mafia Inc., Cédilot highlighted how the book also examines how the Mob affects everyday life in the city.
“This book is not a crusade against the Mafia. It is the fruit of 35 years of work accumulating information,” Cédilot said. “But it is to open eyes, above all the government’s and the public’s, and say this is what the Mafia is in Montreal.”
Cédilot said the Mafia’s strength in the city comes from an extensive protection racket, referred to as the pizzo, that gets little attention from the police or the media.
“While doing interviews for the book, I was told, and this is a very conservative estimate, there were 600 businesses and merchants that were victims of the protection racket in Montreal,” Cédilot said.



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