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Showing posts from October, 2011

It's Official: Gotti Biopic Put 'on Hold'

Movie News Wrap Up: October 29th, 2011 | Screen Rant:

"Gotti: In the Shadow of My Father has been “put on hold”. The film which was set to star John Travolta, Al Pacino, Kelly Preston and Ben Foster has apparently hit a major financial stumbling block. Producer Marc Fiore was unable to raise the cash to pay the film’s stars and the director, Barry Levinson. The film was set to start shooting in January, but almost no pre-production work had been done – a major no-no for a project of this type.

Gotti has had many problems since it was announced, an October shooting plan was scrapped and the original director Nick Cassavetes bailed over scheduling conflicts, then actor Joe Pesci sued producers – when he was dropped from the film. He claimed that he was then given a smaller part than the one he had agreed to (that of Angelo Ruggiero) and asserted that his $3 million salary was cut to $1 million. Producers disagreed and counter-sued.

Will it ever make it to the screen? It might, but …

Police Arrest U.S. Mob Boss in Rome Clinic

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Police in Rome (as in Rome, Italy) arrested a Gambino family mobster who had been convicted in the infamous "Pizza Connection" case, in which Mafiosi sold Sicilian-imported heroin from pizzerias in the U.S. So reports the AP in the San Francisco Chronicle
Rosario Gambino was picked up "surprised" while having a checkup in a Rome clinic early Thursday. (Let's hope it wasn't a prostate exam.)

Gambino, who had been convicted by U.S. courts in the Pizza Connection heroin probe and sentenced to 45 years, was deported two years ago to Italy. While there he was convicted of "criminal association" and sentenced to 20 years. Two dimes is a lot of time in the joint for having an espresso with an old pal.

Rome police say that the 69-year-old Gambino had had a "long career" in the U.S. Cosa Nostra.

An Italian tribunal ordered him released from jail earlier this week while he awaits a top appeals court ruling. But police say they arrested him on a …

The Mobsters the 'Wives' Are Related to

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Mob Wives Season 2 premieres on Jan. 1, 2012. The Season 1 cast -- Carla Facciolo, Renee Graziano, Karen Gravano and Drita D’avanzo -- will all be back, according to VH1.

We found an article on Helium that nicely recaps how each of the Mob Wives are related to the mob, either through their husbands or fathers. Interestingly, Cosa Nostra News was one of the first sites to "break" the news that Carla's Dad is Louis "Bagels" Daidone. But there seems to be a dispute about the identity of her father; I can't say for sure Daidone is her father, as Carla supposedly has denied this; when I first ran that item, I had a couple of sources backing me up. I will continue working on this -- when I have the time. But one thing I can't figure out -- why would someone make that up? What would be the reason for saying an old chieftain in the Luchese family is her father if he is not?

Anyway, with the debut a couple of months away we know that some of you will want to bone …

Mob Wife Carla Facciolo Puts Divorce on Hold, Reunites with Hubby

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According to the website Reality Tea: Star magazine is reporting that Carla has decided to hold off on her divorce to her ex-con husband Joseph Ferragamo in favor of reuniting with him!

Carla herself confirms the news to the mag. “I didn’t like him much before,” admits Carla. “But now I’m beginning to like him again.” If you recall, Carla had decided to divorce Joseph on the show while he was incarcerated citing they already had marital issues before he went to prison.

Joseph, who has 8-year-old twins with Carla, was however recently released from a Brooklyn halfway house after serving six years in prison for stock fraud.

“Carla has been gracious and given me another chance,” he tells Star, while Carla adds: “The hope is to hold this family together. We will be OK.”



See full article: Mob Wives’ Carla Facciolo Calls Off Divorce! Back With Estranged Husband

Luchese Acting Boss Daidone Serving Life

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Louis "Louie Bagels" Daidone (born February 23, 1946) is a New York mobster and former acting boss of the Luchese crime family.

His reign was relatively short.

In the end, while in his early 50s, he was sentenced to three life terms and two 20-year terms, all running concurrently (well, thank god for that!)

The 'Ice Man' Cometh, Despite Franco

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This once happened with asteroids, too, and zombies and other stuff. Hollywood, once in a while, develops two or more movies so similar and in roughly the same time period, too, that it amazes you. In this case, two films are planned, one already in production, on a notorious hit man who lied more than he actually killed -- and these movies almost have the same titles.

We have, based on Philip Carlo's book and starring Mickey Rourke, Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer (2012). The other film, The Iceman (2011), is an entirely different production, based on a different book, by writer Anthony Bruno. It stars Michael Shannon, an excellent actor who has two two seasons been playing a repressed/possibly corrupt IRS agent on HBO's Boardwalk Empire.

Here is an update on each version....
Mickey Rourke's 'Ice Man' Project Moves Forward - The Moviefone Blog: "The Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer, based on the best-selling book by Philip Carlo…

Montreal Mob Associate Gunned Down

From the London Free Press: "The killings and score-settlings that have rocked Montreal's mafia for two years continued Monday night with the shooting death of mob associate Lorenzo "Larry" Lopresti.

He was killed in the city's north end, nearly 19 years after the body of his father Joe was found in a Montreal alley, wrapped in a sheet with a bullet in his head.
Several residents of an apartment building called 911 on Monday evening after shots rang out.
"When police arrived, they discovered the 40-year-old man who had been hit with at least one gunshot," said Montreal police spokesman Daniel Lacoursiere.
The killer or killers were still at large as of Tuesday.
Lorenzo's father, assassinated in 1992, was involved in what was known as the Pizza Connection. The name referred to a heroin route between New York and Montreal and the sale of the drug in pizzerias.
Joe Lopresti was a close friend of the Rizzuto clan that sat atop Canada's mafia hierarchy f…

Fox Mulls New Mob TV Series

KONP / Local News / Local author's book gets TV deal:

A Port Angeles author's book has been picked up to become a possible series on Fox television. Matthew Randazzo co-authored "Breakshot: A Life in the 21st American Mafia". It's the memoir of Japanese-American gangster Kenny "Kenji" Gallo.

Randazzo tells Newsradio 1450 KONP, Fox is interested in turning the story into a hour-long weekly drama.

"Breakshot" is the story of Gallo's journey from a teenage drug smuggler to one of the FBI's top undercover informants against both the Los Angeles and New York Mafia. Gallo's undercover work is responsible for information that led to the arrest of the street leadership of Colombo Crime Family -- one of New York's Five Families -- and the thwarting of a Mob plot to defraud the World Trade Center Ground Zero reconstruction project. Gallo survived an apparent attempt on his life and now lives a law-abiding life under a government-provided…

Big Mob Bust May Fizzle Out, Some Criminologists Say

From an article on the Queens Chronicle website by Michael Cusenza, Editor:


FBI agents, assisted by the Police Department and state law enforcement agencies, last week executed the largest coordinated organized crime takedown in FBI history, cuffing more than 100 of 127 indicted individuals in the city, New Jersey and Rhode Island. But an academic expert in criminology and criminal organizations noted that while the dramatic pre-dawn raids undoubtedly have struck an economic blow to La Cosa Nostra, the Mafia in New York has always regrouped and regenerated.

“They will adjust,” said Howard Abadinsky, professor of criminal justice at St. John’s University in Jamaica. “Whether [the arrests] will have a lasting effect on the structure of the groups — that, I doubt.”

Abadinsky also called the simultaneous arrests of so many reputed members of the mob “extraordinary,” because they’re not all tied to the same crime, and said he sensed “a little bit of a suspicion that maybe there is a bit of…

Gambino Ring Shuttered

Nearly 40 people were arrested last week on charges stemming from loan sharking and gambling activities controlled by the Gambino crime family, reports the North Country Gazette.

A series of early morning raids conducted by Attorney General Schneiderman’s Organized Crime Task Force (OCTF) and the New York City Police Department’s Organized Crime Investigations Division capped a long-term investigation dubbed “Operation Flat Rate.”

Based on the evidence obtained in this investigation, the Attorney General’s office secured five separate indictments from a Kings County grand jury, charging a total of 37 individuals on felony and misdemeanor charges.

"The investigation used a number of resources including wiretaps, video and audio surveillance, GPS tracking, and bugs inside key locations to gather evidence. Surveillance was also conducted throughout the streets of Brooklyn, Staten Island,Manhattan, and New Jersey, where different aspects of the criminal activity unfolded. Some defend…

Feds Seek Max for The Large Guy

"The Chicago mob’s “Large Guy” could take a big fall — if federal prosecutors get their way," reports the Chicago Sun-Times

"Prosecutors are providing a detailed look at reputed Cicero mob boss Michael “The Large Guy” Sarno’s ties to organized crime in a new court filing as they ask a federal judge to sentence Sarno to the maximum possible prison sentence — 25 years behind bars.

"Sarno was convicted in December of racketeering conspiracy and illegal gambling and is set to be sentenced Friday in federal court in Chicago. The conviction is Sarno’s third for mob crimes — and one that could put him in prison until his 70s."

Federal prosecutor Amar-jeet S. Bhachu says Sarno is a career criminal who began working for the mob in 1975. Prosecutors write “it is obvious that he does not care about the law.

“His interest today still lies with taking what he wants for himself and other members of organized crime . . .”

Combating Organized Crime in the Nixon Era

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WASHINGTON, D.C.,
Sunday, October 23, 2011

Video of a discussion in which the National Archives and Richard Nixon Foundation hosted a panel on how the Nixon Administration combated organized crime, see link here: The Presidency: Combating Organized Crime in the Nixon Era.


Bernie Madoff, Self-Proclaimed ‘Mafia Don’

So, Bernie thinks of himself as a Mafia don, aye? Well, I guess Cosa Nostra News should start reporting on him. You heard it here first, folks: We have just named the sixth Mafia Family -- The Madoffs. This link will bring you to an interesting article about what's going on in the "mad financial genius's" gray matter.


However, I should of course draw a distinction between Bernie and a true Mob Boss; there are inherent differences between Madoff and a Mafia don, even if Bernie doesn't think so. What is one major difference, for example? Well, a Mafia boss would give a shit, I think, if his own son committed suicide. Barring that, though, there are also a lot of similarities, as Bernie would like to think...From the International Business Times, we offer, in its entirety, Bernie Madoff, Self-Proclaimed ‘Mafia Don’: 10 Arrogant Excerpts from His Letter to Daughter-in-Law:


Bernie Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison in June 2009 after being convicted of devising…

Franco Out of ‘Iceman’ Film, Reports JustJared.com

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[NOTE: James Franco's role as Mr. Softee has already been recast, with the role now being played by the excellent Michael Wincott. A clip of the unfinished film is already on the Internet. Methinks JustJared -- whatever the hell that stands for -- is trying to drum up some publicity from this claimed "exclusive" by insinuating that, since Franco hit the exit door, the film is doomed to be cast into the dustbin of history; that is an arrogant, shallow assumption, as Franco ain't all that big a deal, and this blogger -- meaning me -- thinks this youngish thespian is forging a reputation as an actor who likes to turn down work.]


We have never heard of this version of the Iceman story; there is in the works a film based on Philip Carlo's book about the hit man (who probably invented most of the dramatic stuff he spoke about on those HBO specials; all due respect to Carlo, we don't believe the 'Iceman' was all that big a figure in the Mafia, either.)

So, wh…

ABC To Adapt Italian Mafia TV Series

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ABC To Adapt Italian Mafia Drama Series – Deadline.com: "ABC has put in development Anti-Mafia Squad, a drama based on the 2009 Italian series Squadra Antimafia – Palermo Oggi.
"David Hollander (The Cleaner) will write the script and executive produce with the original series’ distributor Mediaset, Little Engine’s Gina Matthews and Grant Scharbo and Fluent Media’s Raul Mateu. ABC Studios is producing.
"The original series, which wrapped its third season in June, is set in today’s Palermo, caught in a war between mafia families for the leadership of Cosa Nostra after the arrest of the last godfather. It centers on two women: deputy chief of police Claudia Mares, who joins a special anti-mafia squad, and young Rosy Abate, a member of one of the oldest criminal clans, who returns to Palermo after a long stay in the U.S.
"ABC, ABC Studios, Matthews, Scharbo, Mateu and Mediaset originally tried to adapt the ICM-repped format last season, but the project had no writer and w…

What Business Can Learn from Organized Crime: Harvard

Fascinating piece here, though no mention of American Cosa Nostra included. So, broaden your horizons a little; Google some new words, like Superzonda and Shadow­Crew; learn how you could try to earn $2 trillion  -- in a year; and keep up to date about the latest email scams...

From the Harvard Business Review:

"When 10 men attacked the Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai, in November 2008, they executed one of the best-orchestrated, most technologically advanced terrorist strikes in history.

"Before the assault they had used Google Earth to explore 3-D models of the target and determine optimal entry and exit routes, defensive positions, and security posts. During the melee they used BlackBerrys, satellite phones, and GSM handsets to coordinate with their Pakistan-based command center, which monitored broadcast news and the internet to provide real-time information and tactical direction. When a bystander tweeted a photo of commandos rappelling from a helicopter onto the roof …

'Bread Guy' no 'Loan Shark'

"A mobbed-up Brooklyn shopkeeper insists that just because he calls himself "the bread guy" it doesn't make him a loan shark," reports the NY Daily News.

Michael (Mike the Butcher) Virtuouso, owner of Graham Ave. Meat & Deli, was caught on wiretaps merely discussing bread deliveries and extending food on credit to longtime customers, his lawyer argues.

"The term 'bread guy' can only be interpreted as as the person who delivers rolls, heroes, French bread or Semolina bread to the luncheonette owner," said his lawyer, Joseph DiBenedetto.

Virtuoso, 58, indicted for extortion, will seek bail today."


Read article, Brooklyn deli owner insists he's no loan shark - despite 'the bread guy' nickname

'Mafia Wife' Author Milito Shoots 'Mob Wives' with Cease-and-Desist Letter

'Mafia Wife' author Lynda Milito fires off cease-and-desist letter to VH1 over 'Mob Wives' concept: "The author of "Mafia Wife" wants VH1's "Mob Wives" to sleep with the fishes - legally speaking, that is, according to a NY Daily News report.

"Lynda Milito, the widow of murdered Gambino capo Louie Milito and author of the Cosa Nostra tell-all "Mafia Wife: My Story of Love, Murder and Madness," has hit producers of the all-in-the-crime-family reality series with a cease-and-desist letter.

"Late last month, Milito attorney Joseph Garrity, of the Deerfield Beach, Fla., firm Garrity Weiss, put the "Mob Wives" producers on notice. Those parties include the Weinstein Co., Ben Silverman's Electus production company and show creator Jennifer Graziano's JustJenn Productions. Graziano is the daughter of imprisoned Bonanno crime family consigliere Anthony Graziano."

Read rest, 'Mafia Wife' author Lynd…

Gotti Biopic Sinking Due to Lack of Funding?

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The upcoming Gotti biopic that Fiore Films is producing is on hold, according to several published reports (see at the bottom of this post for links to several articles about the film's production being halted.)

We first reported on Junior's Hollywood venture back in January: http://cosa-nostra-news.blogspot.com/2011/01/junior-gotti-biopic-moving-forward.html. You can also search this site for several additional stories written, following the production's progress.

Financial issues seem to be the culprit, according to many of the reports.Showbiz411.com reports work on the project has come to a halt and won’t resume until more financing is secured. Firstshowing.net reports that "the film has been 'plagued' by financial problems since the start. Now, the promised overseas funds have yet to materialize, halting the project to move into filming. Production was set to begin in January, but now bogged down with problems, that is unlikely."

The film’s producers ar…

I Married A Mobster: Season 2 Confirmed

I Married A Mobster: Season 2 has been confirmed, according to a blog. I only cared for one or two episodes of this series; it would be nice if they offered some objective context about the mobsters. The one about Vic Orena, for example, left out the little detail that he was trying to take over the Colombo crime family while the boss and his son were in prison.
The show is trying to ride on the coattails of Mob Wives, clearly.
"First the rumor mill has been buzzing about a season 2 for Discovery ID's I Married A Mobster. Yesterday, I received confirmation from a Discovery ID source. I am happy to learn I'll get a glimpse of 12 additional women's mob related stories," according to M.O.B. Wives.
Read full post, I Married A Mobster: Season 2 Confirmed

Op-Ed: The 'Old-School Mafia' Could Get the Volatile Economy on the March

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An interesting opinion piece on the old Mafia and current economic mess by Jeff Edelstein - trentonian.com:

I have a feeling by the end of this thought exercise, it’s going to seem like I am advocating for a return to the bad old days of cops on the take, the mob running protection scams, and all manner of vice readily available behind a few closed doors.

Well, maybe I am. Desperate times, right?

Dig it: In the last two years, average income in America has fallen 6.7 percent, and since 2007, it’s fallen a total of 9.8 percent, according to a study released this week by Sentier Research.

So if think you’ve been feeling poorer, like an old woman in a shoe, congratulations: You’re right. And you’re probably as tired of it as I am.

And the more I think about it, the more I take a moment to listen to the base message at the heart of Occupy Wall Street, the more I realize what I’m most tired of: politicians and the corporations they’re in bed with not doing anything about anything. (And by …

What 'Vinnie Ocean' Is up to These Days

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If anyone missed the recent news about what turncoat Vincent "Vinnie Ocean" Palermo, former acting boss of the New Jersey-based DeCavalcante crime family, has been up to, here is a detailed, full-blown account from a website called Courthouse News Service, a nationwide news service for lawyers and the news media, based in Pasadena, Calif.:

A former New Jersey mob boss who came to Houston in the Federal Witness Protection Program - and who allegedly was an inspiration for the fictional Tony Soprano - defaulted on payments on a $1.3 million promissory note issued to buy out a partner's share in a strip club, the partner claims.

Lisa Hansegard sued James Cabella, his wife Debra Cabella and son James Jr., and Hereweareagain Inc., in Harris County Court.

Watch Mob Wives Online For Free

In case you have been hovering above the earth in a spacecraft for the past couple of years or have been on the lam without a TV with cable hookup and didn't get to watch each and every episode of Mob Wives, there is Canadian site that is advertising itself as a destination for watching all episodes of the first season for free.

In addition, more than 500 TV show also are available here, including Pawn Stars, In Security, Intervention Canada, Betrayal,Swamp Brothers, Sanctuary, Till Debt Do Us Part, Two and a Half Men. 
Check it out: Watch Mob Wives Online For Free | Free Internet TV Canada:


Mafia Not Dead

A video report from WPRI regarding the health of the mafia as seen through the lens of what has happened to the New England family.

View Mafia not dead - YouTube

Carmine Galante's Last Meal.....

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The photo of a dead Carmine Galante, who sought to take control of the Bonanno family after emerging from prison in the 1970s, is so iconic for me, I'd never think of even using another picture in this blog's logo....


FBI agent Joe Pistone, posing as Donny Brasco, was just infiltrating the family as a street-level soldier under Sonny "Black" Napolitano.

He thought he had the players identified -- but his intel, as time proved, was not precisely on the money.

Joseph Wendling, 65, now a private investigator, was a detective in an elite unit of the New York City Police Department focused on the five Mafia families that ruled the city’s underworld, called The Pizza Squad.

Two Vacancies on FBI 10 Most Wanted List

What do James Whitey Bulger and Osama bin Laden have in common? Nothing, we think -- except for the fact that both have been wiped off the infamous 10 Most Wanted list started by J. Edgar, who was inspired by the non-Mafia gangsters of the Depression era -- Dillinger, Bonnie and Clyde, Machine Gun Kelly and take-your-pick -- to give the weary, downtrodden public a scorecard of sorts, so that they could cheer for the well-groomed G-men, though I think some of the armies of the unemployed and starving probably cheered the wrong side, in Edgar's opinion.

Reports AllGov.com, "The famed Ten Most Wanted list managed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has two vacancies these days, now that Osama bin Laden is dead and Boston mobster James “Whitey” Bulger is finally behind bars.

"This means there are only Eight Most Wanted right now. The FBI is offering $100,000 for information leading directly to the arrest of seven of the eight, but $1 million for Victor Manuel Geren…

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