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

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Hurricane Sandy helps Gambino associate avoid prison

A home destroyed by Hurricane Sandy seen across from Manny Garafolo's home Seagate, Brooklyn,  NY January 11. 2013. (Nicholas Fevelo/for New York Daily News) 
Manny Garofalo, who pleaded guilty on extortion and intimidation charges, will work 300 hours of communtiy service to rebuild Sea Gate, Brooklyn homes.
A reputed Gambino mobster’s neighbors believe he’s a goodfella.
Their letters, including one from his community’s police chief, persuaded a judge to give Emmanuel "Manny" Garofalo, 64, a free pass after his conviction for a mob shakedown.
Instead of doling out a 30-month prison term, Brooklyn Federal Judge Dora Irizarry sentenced Garofalo to 300 hours of community service so he could help rebuild Sea Gate, which was devastated by Hurricane Sandy.

Manny Garofalo and his wife Barbara in front of their home in Sea Gate, Brooklyn. About one-third of the 850 homes in the community remain uninhabitable following Hurricane Sandy.
Irizarry said she was deeply moved by letters from the defendant’s neighbors praising the good works of Garofalo, whose brother Edward was slain by former Gambino underboss Salvatore "Sammy Bull" Gravano.
She agreed his particular kind of muscle is a bigger asset in the community than in jail.
“There is a sense conveyed by these individuals that Mr. Garofalo would like to do what he can to make amends,” Irizarry said.
His defense lawyer, Michael Macklowitz, said Garofalo knows how to operate heavy equipment and has put his skills to use clearing streets in the seaside community. He’s also helped neighbors navigate the bureaucracy of dealing with FEMA and insurance companies.
Emmanuel "Manny" Garofalo leaves the courthouse with wife Barbara and vowed he wouldn’t come back after he avoided jail time. 
Among the letter writers were the gated community’s chief of police Jerry Fortunato, who described Garofalo operating and repairing plows, and the executive director of the 92nd St. Y who lives two doors away from Garofalo.
“Manny secures the labor and equipment necessary to assist each and every neighbor with particular care to the elderly and frail members of our community,” wrote Sol Adler of the upper East Side cultural institution.
“When heavy snow begins to fall and ocean waves begin to rise, we think of Manny,” wrote neighbor Helene Wynne.
Eddie Garofalo, slain brother of Manny Garofalo, was allegedly murdered by Sammy 'The Bull' Gravano.
In a rare and unprecedented 1997 ABC News exclusive interview, Salvatore "Sammy the Bull" Gravano tells all to Diane Sawyer in two hours, broadcast over two nights.
Garofalo’s home was uninhabitable for one month because of storm damage, but he has since been able to move back in.
“I’m very happy for him and his family and Sea Gate because they will benefit,” Macklowitz said.
About one-third of the 850 homes in Sea Gate are still uninhabitable, according to Garofalo’s wife, Barbara, who sits on the community’s board.
“I think it is an invaluable service Mr. Garofalo has provided to Sea Gate,” Irizarry said. “Sea Gate was devastated and the help is gone now … FEMA is gone.”
Judge Dora Irizarry went very easy on Garofalo ordering up community service instead of jail time.
Garofalo pleaded guilty to threatening a worker from a competing demolition firm, attempted to extort money and gave the victim a bloody lip outside the Paneantico restaurant in Brooklyn, according to court papers.
The Brooklyn U.S. Attorney’s office was seeking a jail sentence.
“I am so happy,” Garofalo told the judge. “You will never see me again in a courtroom, not even for a parking ticket!"



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