|From Left, Vito Badamo, Anthony Santoro, Ernest Aiello, Nicholas Santora. |
On the heels of longtime Bonanno mobster Vinny Asaro's stunning acquittal in Brooklyn last November, federal prosecutors this past week rolled out the long-brewing enterprise corruption trial of Bonanno capo Nicholas “Nicky Mouth” Santora and three crew members in Manhattan Supreme Court.
And it seems that none other than Joseph "Big Joey" Massino is the prosecution's star witness. According to defense attorneys, he fits the description of the "key" turncoat, who reportedly had seven kills under his prodigious belt. The former Bonanno family's official boss faced seven murder charges. It also makes sense that it'd be Massino considering the lead defendant, Nicky Santora, has held a leadership role since the 1970s. Who else would have the institutional knowledge to finally pin enough on Nicky Mouth to possibly put him away for the rest of his life (and faced seven murder charges)?
I'm digging into this in a follow-up but Massino doesn't seem to have done much on the witness stand to justify the Fed's allowing him to flip in the first place. He's failed lie detector tests and has made some bizarre statements on the witness stand, some having to do with the Donnie Brasco fallout. In the 1970s, an associate in former capo Dominick "Sonny Black" Napolitano's crew was identified as FBI agent Joe Pistone. Shortly afterward Sonny Black and Anthony "Tony" Mirra were reportedly slain over Brasco, only Massino later said they weren't.