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|2014-11-20| Net closing in on Matteo Messina Denaro
In Palermo police has arrested 37-year old businessman Girolamo Bellomo who acted as an important henchman of fugitive Mafiaboss Matteo Messino Denaro. More importantly, the suspect is also Denaro's brother-in-law. Investigators believe he helped to back Denaro financially while in hideout and takes care of his business ventures. Another 15 men linked to suspect were taken in for questioning. In december last year police already arrested several affiliates and family members, including his sister Patrizia. Denaro has been a fugitive since 1993 and remains one of the most wanted men in Italy.
(Source: ansa.it, theguardian.com )
|2014-11-10| Sons of former Montreal bigshot in disarray
Jimmy and Francesco Cotroni, sons of the desceased mob leader Frank Cotroni, found themselves on the opposite ends of a criminal court case recently after one brother burned down the house of the other. Prior to this rather peculiar case brother Jimmy didn't carry any lengthy criminal records but did however had a history of heavy drug abuse. In october 2013, under the influence of drugs, he visited the house of his brother Francesco, who wasn't home since the house was under renovation, and for some reason started a fire which ultimately ended up causing $200.000 in damage. For that he now faces a max term of 14 years for arson and is forbidden to communicate with his brother. It is very likely that their relationship is thereby done. Their father Frank and uncle Vic Cotroni led the Montreal underworld for more than 20 years until the rise of the Rizzuto clan.
|2014-10-30| Italy's president testifies in Mafia trial
In Rome the president of Italy, 89-year old Giorgio Napolitano, was questioned about purported negotiations between the state and the Mafia to stop terror attacks in the 1990's. Some questions came from the lawyer of none less than Salvatore Riina. The president was not being accused of anything but was there as a witness. The main suspect in the case is former Minister of Interior Nicola Mancino, who is on trial for giving wrong testimonies concerning the 1993 Mafia bombings of several churches in Rome, the Uffizi museum in Florence and a Milan park. Mancino had presumably approached Mafia members to grant some of their wishes in return for peace.
|2014-08-09| Genovese capo arrested on racketeering conspiracy charges
Daniel Pagano, a 61-year old captain in the Genovese Family, has been indicted on racketeering charges. He was arrested in his home in Ramapo by the FBI. Prosecutors say he was leading an illegal gambling ring and passed off the money to the family leaders. He and associate Michael Palazzolo are also being charged of extortion to collect gambling debts. Pagano is best known for his involvement with civil rights activist Al Sharpton in a drug scheme back in the early 80's. A crime for which Sharpton till this day continues to deny his involvement. in 2003 his father-in-law, Vincent DeVito, was shot dead after he had stolen $100.000 from a local millionaire businessman. Pagano could faces a prison term of 20 years.
|2014-08-02| Enemy of Vito Rizzuto gunned down in Montreal
Last Friday gangleader Joseph Ducarne was shot and killed in the middle of a street in St-Michel, Montreal. Ducarme was the leader of the 67 gang, named after a bus route, that is affiliated with the Crips gang. During his life he was arrested multiple times for violence and assault. Earlier on, in 2010, assassins had failed to kill him during a shooting at his boutique. The shooting was believed to be a retaliation for the murder of Vito Rizzuto Jr., the son of Montreal Mafia boss Vito Rizzuto. Since then Ducarme was on a Mafia hitlist. Even after the passing of Rizzuto last year scores still got settled. It does prove that the Rizzuto war is far from over.
(Source: cbc.ca, montrealgazette.com)
|2014-06-23| Massive sweep sheds new light on 105-year old murder case
Today Sicilian police arrested 95 reported members of the Cosa Nostra during operation "Apocalisse". Most of the accused men originate from the Palermo region and are being accused of extortion. Police also confiscated millions of euro's. The most revealing part however came from one of the suspects who was overheard talking to a friend on the phone. Unaware the police was listening in he told that his fathers uncle, Paolo Palazzotto, was in fact the one who murdered New York policeman Joseph Petrosino back in 1909. Until now the real killer was never revealed. The murder still remains one of the biggest events in Mafia history.
|2014-05-26| Jailed Casalesi boss shocks Camorrista by turning state witness
Antonio Iovine, one of four bigshots of the notorious Casalesi clan, is collaborating with investigators. He was arrested in 2010 after being on the run for several years. All four bosses are behind bars ever since, but until now none of them had turned state witness. Naples is trembling since the word got out that Iovine is talking. "He is someone who knows everything" said Roberto Saviano, bestselling author of Gamorrah. "The companies, big and small, who were born and prospered thanks to the flow of cash from Antonio Iovine, feel as if they're in a room whose walls are increasingly closing in." He added.
|2014-05-02| Colombo member sentenced to 50 years
Colombo mobster Dino “Little Dino” Saracino must have fainted when hearing the verdict; 50 years in prison! Saracino was suspected in the 1997 killing of NYPD police officer Ralph Dols, but was acquitted. The murder did however prompted him to be made into the Colombo family. The hit was ordered by then boss Joel Cacace out of jealousy since the cop had married his ex-wife. Saracino, who once stated that he could do a 20 year sentence and walk out with a smile, remained a free man until he was ratted out by two fellow mobsters; Dino Calabro and Joseph Competiello. After being sentenced for several counts of racketeering, he told the judge that he hoped that both men would receive a similar sentence.
|2014-04-26| Toronto mobster gunned down
Months after the latest developments in the Rizzuto warfare, Canada was hit by another Mafia killing. Toronto criminal Carmine Verduci (57) was found dead on the parking lot outside the Regina Sports Café. Verduci was a member of the Calabrian section of the Canadian underworld and was an important contact between Toronto and Calabria. In 2008 Verduci was noticed in Southern Italy when he attended a meeting with several members of the 'Ndrangheta. From that point on police followed him and wiretapped his cellphone. After two years of investigation Italian prosecutors discovered the existence of 7 Calabrian crime groups in the Toronto area. Because of this the RCMP launched several arrest warrants against many of it's members which possibly could have sealed Verduci's fate. It is uncertain that the murder is related to the past violence concerning the Rizzuto family.
|2014-03-13| Former Genovese capo sentenced in 2003 murder case
Anthony “Bingy” Arillotta, a former capo turned rat, was sentenced to 99 months in prison for two murders: that of Massachusetts mob boss Adolfo Bruno and that of mob associate Gary Westerman. The killings had awarded him with the position of capo and cleared his way to lead the Springfield faction of the Genovese family. In 2010 he was arrested and charged with the murders of Bruno and Westerman but rapidly began to cooperate with investigators. He revealed the Bruno assassination plot and testified at the trials of Genovese acting boss Arthur “Artie” Nigro and loanshark Emilio Fusco, who were send straight to prison. Because of his cooperation he only received a minor sentence for his crimes.
(Source: "huffingtonpost.com, aboutthemafia.com)