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

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Connecticut bookmaker granted bail in restaurant arson case

A judge granted bail Tuesday for a reputed mob bookmaker who had a stun gun and a cattle prod when he was charged last week with burning down a Middletown restaurant in an insurance fraud.
Federal prosecutors insisted that, as a condition of his release, John Barile of East Hartford be prohibited from possessing "a TASER, stun gun or any personal defense devices that can send an electric volt" and U.S. Magistrate Judge Donna Martinez agreed.
Criminal defense lawyer Hebert J. Santos said Barile kept the stun gun and cattle prod for personal protection, but has not had the need to use them.
Barile, 51, is charged with conspiracy, arson and fraud in an indictment that was returned Dec. 30, just hours before the statute of limitations ran out on criminal charges associated with an alleged January 2010 fire at Enzo's Restaurant.
The Main Street pizzeria and lounge is near the city police department. Barile supplied food when city officers staged a rally in the late 1990s to support an officer suspended from duty for criticizing Wesleyan University, where students rallied to support a convicted cop killer in Philadelphia.
Federal law enforcement has been watching Barile since 1994 when he was arrested with a who's who of the Genovese crime family's western New England branch during an FBI gambling crack down in Hartford. Arrested then with Barile were Francesco "Skyball" Scibelli and Carmine "Carlo" Mastrototaro, the Genovese capos in Springfield and Worcester, Mass.
Barile was charged with racketeering and accused of using threats of violence to collect gambling and loan shark debts. FBI sources said he worked for Tony Volpe, the Hartford lounge owner who ran Hartford for the Genovese family. Barile and an associate from Springfield, a 250-pound former professional wrestler known as "Big Pat" Poland, were given 30-month sentences after pleading guilty to racketeering conspiracy.
Barile is accused of plotting to burn down Enzo's with three unidentified co-conspirators, one of whom is his partner in the restaurant. The indictment charges that an associate helped Barile find someone with "specialized knowledge of fire and fireworks." The specialist examined Enzo's and, the indictment says, the conspirators agreed that their best chance to avoid detection would be to stage a fire at the deep fryer in the restaurant kitchen.
Because business is good around Christmas and New Year's Eve, the indictment said, Barile decided to wait until after the holidays to ignite Enzo's. He sprayed cooking oil around the deep fryer to feed the fire and set the fire midnight on a Sunday.
The indictment said Barile's partner was "inebriated" at the time of the alleged arson and, under circumstances that are not explained, remained locked in Enzo's after the fire began. News reports at the time indicate a fire was reported at Enzo's at 12:45 a.m. and a restaurant employee was treated for smoke inhalation and released.
Barile received an insurance payout for the restaurant, including about $165,000 he deposited into a back account he controlled in November. Under the terms of his release on bail, Barile is confined to his residence, but permitted to work for a relative's landscaping business.



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