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

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Pizza chef, mob thug may be in clear if they don't talk to grand jury about bloody brawl

Lucali's pizza maestro Mark Iacono (right) and Battista (Benny) Geritano (left) apparently stabbed each other in a bloody fight last month.
Lucali's pizza maestro Mark Iacono (right) and Battista (Benny) Geritano (left) apparently stabbed each other in a bloody fight last month.
The famed Brooklyn pizza maker and the reputed mob goon who stabbed each other last month may soon be in the clear of attempted murder charges stemming from the vicious knife fight, the Daily News has learned.
Lucali's pizza maestro Mark Iacono or Battista (Benny) Geritano aren't testifying before a grand jury about the bloody brawl on a Carroll Gardens street, Geritano's mouthpiece said yesterday in Brooklyn Federal Court.
A law enforcement official acknowledged there's no criminal case if neither combatant snitches.
"The district attorney's office is not putting the pizza pie guy into the grand jury and they're not putting Mr. Geritano into the grand jury," lawyer Steven Kartagener said.
"So I think what's going to happen ... the charge against the pizza guy and the charge against Mr. Geritano are going to wither on the vine and not go forward," he said.
Federal Judge Sterling Johnson asked if that was just wishful thinking.
Kartagener said he ran the scenario by the state prosecutor - who he described as a "major guy" in the Brooklyn district attorney's office - and was assured that his overripe tomatoes metaphor is "a pretty safe guess."
Geritano, who claimed he acted in self-defense, has been jailed since last month's incident because the arrest may have violated his supervised release for a prior federal robbery conviction.
While Geritano may not be ready to eat cheese like a rat, his lawyer pounded Iacono like a pile of pizza dough.
"There was a big knife involved, initially they thought [Geritano] had the big knife," Kartagener said. "He didn't. The big knife plunged into his back by the pizza pie owner."
Iacono is still recovering from his wounds and has not yet returned to pie-making at the Henry St. restaurant. His lawyer James Froccaro declined to comment.
Meanwhile, Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Geddes revealed that the FBI is currently investigating Geritano's alleged involvement in a series of bank burglaries.
Kartagener claims the new allegations "came out of the woodwork" from an informant after the stabbing made headlines.


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