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

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Feds prosecuting Gambino associate because he wouldn't snitch on Junior Gotti

A loose cannon defense witness Tuesday blurted out to a jury that the feds are prosecuting his Gambino associate pal for three murders simply because he wouldn’t snitch on John A. "Junior" Gotti.

Patrick Sutherland appeared in Brooklyn Federal Court to back up longtime prison pal John Burke’s claim that he quit the mob in 2002 after becoming disenchanted with the Gambinos and finding religion.

Instead, Sutherland’s blabbing wreaked havoc on the government’s case against Burke.

“This case started in 2007 when you brought him to Florida and tried to get him to turn on John Gotti Jr.,” Sutherland testified.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Whitman Knapp immediately objected and Federal Judge Sterling Johnson ordered the remark stricken from the record.

Sutherland also blabbed in court that Burke was previously tried for the murders in state court and acquitted of two of them — which the jury is not supposed to know either.

“I probably put a target on my back (by testifying),” Sutherland, 50, cracked.

Sutherland’s testimony aligned with Burke’s own Internet rants on a blog that he writes from the Metropolitan Detention Center. The blog features an American flag draped across the top and a Memorial Day tribute to the armed services.

“The Federal Government has been seeking my cooperation against John Gotti Jr. for a long time now,” Burke posted. “I refuse to lie against other men in order to set myself free.”

Prosecutors rested their case last Thursday without calling Gotti Jr.’s ex-crony John Alite, who has previously testified that the mob scion had approved the rubout of Queens drug dealer John Gebert, one of the murders for which Burke is charged.

Burke is serving 25 years to life in state prison for whacking Bruce Gotterup in 1991, which Manhattan federal prosecutors tried and failed to prove was ordered by Gotti Jr.

The federal charges of murder in aid of racketeering are different than state murder charges.



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