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

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Grandson of legendary Genovese boss elected Mayor of New York village

Mobster’s grandson elected mayor of New York village
He gave voters a choice they couldn’t refuse.
Philip Gigante, the new mayor of sleepy Airmont, NY, is the grandson of the late Genovese crime-family godfather Vincent “The Chin” Gigante — causing agita for some residents who say they are terrified of their new village boss.
“It’s frightening for not just me but all village residents aware of his background,” said one businessman in the Rockland County village who requested anonymity for fear of “retribution.”
“If you were a resident living a couple of blocks from Village Hall, would you want to be named?” the man explained. “I’m not sure what he’s capable of, considering his family’s background.”
Philip Gigante, 41, a real-estate lawyer by profession who is also president of a freight business founded by his father, Salvatore, rubbed out his two opponents in a three-way March 18 election, collecting 904 votes to Thomas Gulla’s 689 and Ralph Bracco’s 261.
About a week before the election, the Rockland County Times ran a story revealing Gigante’s notorious grandfather, calling it “one of Rockland’s worst-kept secrets.”
But neither opponent used the Republican’s family history against him.
“I wouldn’t do that to another candidate,” said Gulla, 54, a planning-board member who said Gigante is a stand-up guy.
“He has the interests of the village at heart,” Gulla said. “Whatever his grandfather did for a living is not a reflection on him.”
Bracco, 64, who served as village mayor from 1993 to 1995, said he heard from voters concerned about Gigante’s background, but said he wasn’t going to raise the issue.
“I didn’t want to get in using negatives,” he said.
Some residents said they were disgusted that the mayor’s family tree didn’t come up at all on the campaign trail.
“The idea that the scion of the Genovese crime family now has a toehold in anything legitimate . . . is a stunning indictment of our society,” said another resident of the village of 9,000.
“Imagine if the grandson of Nicky Barnes was running for office — some guy who made his bones slinging crack and powder. There would have been an uproar,” the person said, referring to the infamous Harlem crime boss.
Gigante — who will earn $25,000 a year for the part-time job of mayor — told The Post that he’s legit.
“People are free to believe what they wish. My actions and accomplishments should speak for themselves,” he said.
Gigante said the family business he runs was started by his parents without cash or influence from The Chin.
“Their hard work and years of sacrifice has made it what it is today. I am saddened that people will try and trivialize their efforts and associate our business with anything but lawful and ethical beginnings,” he said.
A onetime boxer, Vincent Gigante rose to power as a Genovese-family captain in the 1960s and ’70s. He became boss in 1981 when Philip Lombardo stepped down because of poor health.
The Chin — the nickname comes from his mother’s Italian pronunciation of his first name, Vincenzo — famously ordered a failed hit on Gambino boss John Gotti in 1986, and with Gotti’s eventual imprisonment less than a decade later, was considered the country’s most powerful mobster.
The crafty “Chin” hid his leadership role for decades by pretending to be crazy — muttering to himself as he shuffled around near his mother’s Sullivan Street apartment in Greenwich Village in his bathrobe, pajamas and slippers. The act earned him a second nickname, “The Oddfather.”
In December 1997, he was convicted of running multimillion-dollar rackets and conspiring to kill Gotti and another mobster, fined $1.25 million and sentenced to 12 years in prison. He died in 2005 at age 77 in a federal pen in Missouri.



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