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

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Bonanno associate sentenced to 18 years in prison for home invasion murder

A reputed Bonanno crime associate was sentenced to 18 years in prison for the home-invasion murder of a Brooklyn man and his beloved dog — nearly twice the term he thought he’d get under a plea deal with the government.
Neil Messina, 52, found out Friday that Federal Judge Kiyo Matsumoto may have gone easy on some Mafia oldfellas, but is more than ready to severely punish violent mobsters.
Messina was convicted of the 1992 fatal shooting of Joseph Pistone and his German shepherd named King. Messina served as a getaway driver when two cohorts went inside looking for drug money and killed Pistone.
But the judge believed a 10-year sentence approved by the government was too light, considering there was also compelling proof that Messina had ordered the fatal shooting of another man in 1989.
In federal court, a judge can consider evidence of uncharged crimes in a sentencing decision.
“I'm a changed man today,” Messina insisted.
But Matsumoto had already viewed a video in court provided by Pistone’s family showing photos of the victim, the dog and his tombstone.
Defense lawyer Gerald McMahon said he would appeal the sentence.



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