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

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Feds bust leaders of the Lucchese crime family in massive takedown

The Lucchese family’s ruling hierarchy and 16 mob associates were charged Wednesday with murder, drug-dealing, extortion and gambling in a massive federal indictment.

Named in the 30-page racketeering case were Lucchese street boss Matthew Madonna, his underboss Steven "Wonder Boy" Crea Sr., and consigliere Joseph DiNapoli.

The indictment also charged various mobsters with the murder of a longtime mob hitman and three attempted killings, including a Crea-ordered hit of a Bonanno family associate who disrespected him.

The venerable crime family, in between shootings, peddled cocaine, heroin, prescription opiates and marijuana, charged the indictment — which covered a 17-year stretch beginning in 2000.

And accused No. 2 Crea — convicted in 2004 of conspiracy to rig bids on three Manhattan construction projects — was charged with mail and wire fraud in connection with the $25 million expansion of a New York City hospital.

Madonna, Crea, and the underboss’ namesake son Steven Jr. were charged as co-conspirators in the gruesome November 2013 murder of notorious mob killer Michael Meldish.

The victim was executed gangland-style, shot once in the head while sitting behind the wheel of a rusty Lincoln LS sedan in the Bronx. Meldish, 62, was suspected in at least 10 mob hits in the 1970s and 1980s.

As the man who ran the drug trade in the Bronx, Meldish had ties with the Lucchese, Bonanno and Genovese crime families.

He was killed “to enforce the rules of the enterprise among its members and associates,” the indictment charged. His body, with blood leaking from both ears, was discovered in a leafy section of Throgs Neck.

The younger Crea was identified as a crime family capo, along with three co-defendants. His father had served as the family’s acting boss just after the turn of the century.

Crea Sr.’s reign was cut short by his conviction and subsequent jail term. In addition to the state charges, he was found guilty on federal charges of construction industry extortion.

Among the other mobsters charged in the Meldish murder were Joseph "Joey Glasses" Datello, Paul "Paulie Roast Beef" Cassano and Terrence "T" Caldwell.

Caldwell was identified as the shooter in the failed May 2013 hit on a Bonanno family member in East Harlem. The victim was wounded but survived the murder try.

According to the indictment, a Bonanno family associate was targeted for death one year earlier “in retaliation for a showing of disrespect to Crea Sr.”

Defendants Cassano and Vincent Bruno went to the man’s home with the intention of exacting the elder Crea’s revenge, but never completed the murder contract, authorities said.

And last October, Crea gave his blessing to Datello to take a New Hampshire road trip and track down a mob snitch, authorities charged.

The murder was planned “in retaliation for the decision by (the target) to provide information to law enforcement,” the indictment charged.

The reputed wiseguys are reportedly due to appear later Wednesday in federal court in White Plains.

The government, in the indictment, announced plans to seek forfeiture of the mobsters’ ill-gotten profits, including “all property and any proceeds” acquired through the criminal enterprise.



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