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

Friday, May 6, 2011

Mob investigator bought home across street from mistress of Vinny Gorgeous

Bonanno gangster Vincent (Vinny Gorgeous) Basciano is on trial for murder.
Bonanno gangster Vincent (Vinny Gorgeous) Basciano is on trial for murder.

A veteran mob investigator had just moved into his new Bronx home when he got the shock of his life - Bonanno gangster Vincent (Vinny Gorgeous) Basciano's SUV was blocking his driveway.
Retired NYPD Detective Thomas Crowe, who had surveilled Basciano many times, had no idea he had bought a home in 1999 across the street from the wiseguy's mistress Debra Kalb.
"I would see him routinely, on a daily basis at some point," Crowe told Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack Dennehy on Thursday at the mob chieftain's murder trial in Brooklyn Federal Court.
Basciano had set up Kalb, a hairdresser at his Bronx beauty salon called "Hello Gorgeous," in the love shack owned by Bonanno associate Salvatore (Sally Daz) Zottola.
The detective had followed Zottola many times, too.
"A lot of [Zottola's] buildings had on the facades, it looked like giant coins . . . mementos to his deceased wife or family members," he testified.
Like any dedicated detective, Crowe decided to use his living-room-with-a-view to monitor Basciano's meetings with mobsters on Kalb's patio and front steps. He took numerous photos of mob meetings through his living room blinds.
"My wife was nervous about it, she told me to stop doing it," Crowe told the Daily News outside court. "I just kept a low profile."
Basciano stopped by every day to visit Kalb and their love child during the year Crowe lived across the street.
Several years later, Basciano bought a home for Kalb in Rockland County. Crowe looks back on the coincidence as "good luck for me, and I guess bad luck for him [Basciano]."
Prosecutors also called the daughter of murder victim Randolph Pizzolo to testify about her father's premonition of impending death.
Pizzolo was getting a life insurance policy because he "was checking out soon," said Connie Pizzolo-Cordero.
"He said to me that he had said and did things that he couldn't take back," she recalled.
When his bullet-riddled body was found in a rain-soaked gutter in Brooklyn on Dec. 1, 2004, Pizzolo had not completed the paperwork for the policy.
The feds rested their case with a medical examiner on the stand and jurors viewing a closeup photo of a gunshot wound to the back of Pizzolo's head.


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