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

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Firm failed to disclose that murderous Bonanno family gangster was on payroll

Firm with gov‘t contracts ‘hired’ accused killer, mobster
A Manhattan firm that has received more than $45 million in city and state contracts had an accused killer and Bonanno family mobster working as the president of a key division — but failed to reveal his criminal past on state disclosure forms, sources told The Post.

Neil Messina, 52, was sentenced to 18 years in federal prison last April for his role in a botched 1992 home invasion robbery that left a man and his German shepherd dead.

But Tri-State Employment Services — which provides temps, consultants and other business services to a host of city and state agencies — never mentioned his January 2011 arrest on a murder charge when it filed vendor responsibility forms with the state comptroller in February 2012.

The forms require prospective contractors to disclose whether any of their officials were under investigation or had been charged with any crimes over the previous five years.

Susan Kennedy, Tri-State’s VP of Government Sales, answered “no” and provided no information about Messina’s widely publicized arrest.

“Everybody knew who he was,” said one source with knowledge of the company’s inner workings. “It certainly raised some eyebrows.”

Potential penalties could include contract termination, according to the state comptroller’s Web site.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Messina served as president of the company’s “professional employer organization” division from 1997 to 2011.

The feds described him as an associate of the Bonanno crime family.

Tri-State has raked in the $45 million for scores of contracts awarded since 1996, including a $10.3 million deal with the city’s Department of Social Services to assign temporary workers, a $49,000 contract with the city’s Health and Hospitals Corporation for consulting work, and a $300,000 contract with the state Office of General Services for administrative services.

A spokesperson for general services said, “If true, the contract will be terminated immediately.”

In a deal with Brooklyn federal prosecutors, Messina, wound up pleading guilty to racketeering charges in the 1992 Brooklyn home invasion and murder of Joseph Pistone and his beloved dog, King.

Pistone was killed during the robbery when two Messina accomplices searched for cash they thought was hidden in the house.

Messina, who said he was only the getaway driver, was one of nearly 100 wiseguys rounded up by the feds in January 2011.

Tri-State founder and president Robert Cassera, did not return calls for comment and didn’t respond to messages left at his office.

Gerald McMahon, Messina’s lawyer in the Pistone case, declined to comment.



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