Rizzuto Clan's Chief Enemy Doesn't Mind Prison?

The judge advised Desjardins that he is slated to preside over a lengthy trial in Gatineau, which pushes Desjardins hearing back to July.
Raynald Desjardins in no hurry.

Raynald Desjardins appears to have nothing left to lose, to paraphrase the Montreal Gazette.

The 62-year-old former trusted lieutenant of the Rizzuto organization last week told a Quebec Superior Court judge that he is willing to wait for a period that could ultimately last longer than a year for his sentencing hearing. This follows Desjardins guilty plea to conspiracy for the November 2011 murder of former New York-based acting Bonanno crime family boss Salvatore Montagna.

Desjardins, an influential organized crime figure who used to be a right-hand man to Montreal mob boss Vito Rizzuto, pleaded guilty to the conspiracy charge on July 6, 2015..



Montagna was killed on Nov. 24, 2011, in Charlemagne, a suburb east of Montreal. The slaying occurred just weeks after an attempt was made on Desjardins’s life in Laval.

Desjardins has had three dates in court since his guilty plea, but each time Justice André Vincent was asked merely to set another date. This happened most recently last month at the Gouin courthouse.

The judge advised Desjardins that he is slated to preside over a lengthy trial in Gatineau, which pushes Desjardins hearing back to July.

"Desjardins appeared to have no problem with the long delay despite the fact he is currently detained at the Montreal Detention Centre. When he is ultimately sentenced, every day that Desjardins has spent behind bars will count as a day-and-a-half against his overall sentence. That means Desjardins will likely have served the equivalent of a six-year sentence by the time Vincent decides on a prison term."

There was a surprise at that last hearing. Robert Rouleau said that Desjardins will also settle another case brought against him following his December 2011 arrest in connection with Montagna’s murder. The other case is related to four charges filed against Desjardins in connection with a .40-calibre Glock pistol seized at his home in Laval during his arrest.

Leonardo Rizzuto went through a similar ordeal related to an illegal handgun found in his home when he was arrested last November as part of a larger Montreal underworld roundup.

Six Others Cop Pleas
Another recent development in the Montagna murder: Six men facing a lengthy first-degree murder trial over Montagna pleaded guilty recently to a reduced charge of conspiracy.

The six men — Vittorio Mirarchi, 38; Jack Simpson, 73; Calogero Milioto, 44; Pietro Magistrale, 64; Steven Fracas, 31; and Steven D’Addario, 38 — admitted to participating in the plot to kill Montagna, sho was fatally shot on Nov. 24, 2011.

Felice Racaniello, 31, pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact and was sentenced to time served plus one day. He'd already served the equivalent of a 68-month prison sentence.

The judge ordered that all evidence presented during previous court hearings remain under a publication ban at least until a sentencing date for the six men, scheduled for June.

The trial was expected to last at least a year. As recently as one week prior to the plea deals, several lawyers involved in the case were still arguing a long series of pretrial motions before Superior Court Justice Michael Stober.

Short-lived alliance
Early in 2011, Desjardins and Montagna were alleged by police sources to have been part of a group seeking to wrest control of the Montreal Mafia after Vito Rizzuto was sent to an American prison, essentially leaving his organization vulnerable.

However Montagna and Desjardins couldn't keep a deal together. On Sept. 16, 2011, at least one gunman fired several shots from an assault rifle at Desjardins while he was seated in a vehicle parked off Lévesque Blvd. E., near the Olivier-Charbonneau bridge that connects Montreal to Laval via Highway 25.

Montagna lived around two months more.




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