Monday, January 16, 2017

Nicky Scarfo Declined First Offer To Be Boss

The following, based on information gathered by New Jersey's State Commission of Investigation, is part of an ongoing series about Nicodemo (Little Nicky) Scarfo, former Philadelphia Cosa Nostra boss notorious for his violence. Scarfo died last Friday.
Phil Testa, left, Angelo Bruno

After the Philadelphia crime family's longtime boss, Angelo Bruno, was killed on March 21, 1980, in a grisly gangland hit, the Commission wanted answers.

A boss had been killed "illegally." Whoever was behind it was going to die.

Examples needed to be made to send a loud and clear message about what happened when members defied the Commission.

But before anything, the Commission needed to learn the identities of the assassins.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Nicky Scarfo's Early Years in Philadelphia Cosa Nostra

The following is based on information gathered by New Jersey's State Commission of Investigation.

Nicodemo (Little Nicky) Scarfo was formally inducted into the New Jersey Cosa Nostra crime family during the reign of Angelo Bruno's predecessor, Joseph Ida.

Bruno was crafty when he killed....

The event took place in the mid-1950s. Several men were "made" during the same ceremony, which occurred in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, at the Sans Souci restaurant and cocktail lounge.

Former Philadelphia Mob Boss Nicky Scarfo Is Dead

Looks like Nicodemo D. “Little Nicky” Scarfo, known for his reign of violence over the Philadelphia Cosa Nostra in the 1980s, won't walk out of prison one day, as a source had previously surmised.

Scarfo died in a federal prison medical facility in Butner, NC, underworld sources have revealed, as reported by George Anastasia on Big Trial.

Nicodemo Scarfo dies
Little Nicky, right, Phil Leonetti, and Lawrence Merlino; Leonetti and Merlino
both flipped. Merlino died in 2001.

Anastasia noted in the story, posted around three hours earlier tonight that:
"Prison officials could not be reached to confirm the report which began circulating in South Philadelphia this morning. Scarfo had been an inmate at the medical facility for more than a year. Cause of death, which reportedly occurred on Friday, could not be determined, but sources said he had been plagued with several medical problems."

Friday, January 13, 2017

Bad Blood Coming to TV This Summer

Bad Blood: The Vito Rizzuto Story

That's the title of a "limited event" television series debuting on FX this summer. It consists of six 60-minute episodes.

"Inspired by reputed mobster Vito Rizzuto," the show stars Anthony LaPaglia (Analyze This sequel Analyze That) as Vito Rizzuto and Paul Sorvino from Goodfellas as Nico (Nicolo) Rizzuto, Vito's father.

Bad Blood was filmed in Montreal and Sudbury, the largest city in Northern Ontario, Canada. The story used as its source the best-selling book by Antonio Nicaso and Peter Edwards, Business or Blood: Mafia Boss Vito Rizzuto’s Last War. (Business would've benefited from a more-vigorous fact-check; The Sixth Family by Adrian Humphreys and Lee Lamothe is the book about the Rizzutos, with landmark research. Another good book is Andre Cedillot's Mafia Inc.: The Long, Bloody Reign of Canada's Sicilian Clan.)

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Mafia Still a Power On the Waterfront

In the classic film On the Waterfront (which I haven't seen and don't intend to, unless someone tells me otherwise), the laborers who worked on New York's docks "were reluctant, even frightened, to talk to the authorities, whether a priest or a detective, because the mob controlled the waterfront," the New York Times noted recently.

Longshoremen in 1940s New York

REVISED: Most longshoremen were indeed conflicted during much of the 20th century about the notion of revealing what they knew regarding members of a certain secret criminal society.

In Brooklyn, that meant informing on a man who had demonstrated he'd go all the way -- meaning, murder you, your wife and your entire family -- if he had even an inkling you were informing on him (or were planning to or were even thinking about the possibility). And considering the wide-scale corruption of police, union officials, politicians, basically all civilization's "managers," if you will, chances were the "Lord High Executioner" Albert Anastasia and brother Anthony (Tough Tony) Anastasio would know. (Albert spelled his surname differently allegedly to buffer his parents from his blood-soaked ways; longshoremen who knew of this probably took little comfort from it.)

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Montreal Mafia Fractured and Still Fighting

Around 13 firebombings in Greater Montreal in the past year are believed to be Mafia-related, which is more than double the number said to have occurred in 2015, according to Montreal police.

The most recent arson is believed to have happened this past Monday morning targeting a strip mall in Laval's Vimont neighborhood. Police have said that the fire is "suspicious," according to published reports.

CBC News recently noted that Montreal's Mafia "has become a shadow of its former self as rival clans battle each other to see which Mob boss will become the city's next godfather."

An arson attack is alleged to be related to Mafia business.

Caterina Miceli, who is married to Carmelo Cannistraro, saw one of her salons firebombed last week, as well as in the more recent strip mall bombing, during which four businesses were destroyed, including Streakz Coiffure, a hair salon owned by Miceli.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Gotti Grandson Granted $2M Bail, Faces More Conspiracy Counts

The late John Gotti’s grandson (and namesake) was granted bail of $2 million in a late-December hearing.

At the same time, Gotti, whose father is Peter Gotti, brother of former Gambino acting boss John "Junior" Gotti, was hit with additional conspiracy counts. (No details about these new counts were readily available.)

John Gotti
John Gotti, the grandson.

Queens Supreme Court Justice Charles LoPresto decided that the grandson of the former legendary Gambino crime family boss should be allowed out on bail, though he's not going anywhere until a "bail sufficiency"  hearing is held.

Monday, January 9, 2017

How Carlo Gambino Became "Boss of Bosses"

Carlo Gambino's takeover of the crime family rechristened in his name was contested primarily by Aniello Dellacroce and Armand Rava, staunch Anastasia supporters. 

They had potential allies in men like Anthony “Tough Tony” Anastasio, the dead boss’s brother, a powerful mobster running Brooklyn’s docks, and Vincent James Squillante, a waste management kingpin, drug trafficker and experienced gunsel.

Carlo Gambino
Carlo, when he rose to power at the top of what was
once called the Mangano crime family.

If an attempt were made on Carlo’s life, the order would've originated from, and perhaps also carried out, by those very men.

History tells us no such attempt was ever made.

Why is that, exactly?

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Anastasia Loyalists Like Dellacroce Faced Gambino's Wrath


Aniello "Neil" Dellacroce was born on March 15, 1914, in New York City and died on Dec. 2, 1985, in New York City.

He took to "the life" with vigor. First arrested at 16, Dellacroce swiftly went about establishing a solid criminal portfolio for himself, making it as diverse as he could. He was charged with a range of crimes and was in and out of prison most of his life. He'd served one-two year bids for assault, armed robbery, drug dealing.

But Dellacroce, a work in progress, eventually specialized in murder. And for that, the Feds never really touched the longtime Gamino crime family underboss.

Aniello Dellacroce
Neil Dellacroce

Serving as Carlo Gambino's underboss, then Paul Castellano's, Dellacroce lived a life of what can only be chronicled as unimaginable violence.

As protégé to the "Lord High Executioner" himself, Albert Anastasia, Dellacroce was a Murder Inc. button man. He learned how to administer death by some of the best practitioners.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Dellacroce Linked to Notorious '56 Acid Attack on Journalist?

"Dellacroce was one of the scariest individuals I've ever met in my life. Dellacroce's eyes were, like, he didn't have any eyes. Did you ever see Children of the Damned? His eyes were so blue that they weren't even there. It was like looking right through him." 
-- The late New York mob-buster Joseph Coffey

"Of all the gangsters that I've met personally, and I've met dozens of them in all of my years, there were only two who, when I looked them straight in the eye, I decided I wouldn't want them to be really personally mad at me. Aniello Dellacroce was one and Carmine Galante was the other. They had bad eyes, I mean, they had the eyes of killers. You looked at Dellacroce's eyes and you could see how frightening they were, the frigid glare of a killer."
-- Ralph Salerno, NYPD officer, leading Mafia authority; author of The Crime Confederation

"His eyes had no color... as if his soul (were) transparent,"
-- Newspaper reporter writing of Aniello "Neil" Dellacroce

Neal, Neil, The Tall Man, Father O’Neal
Aniello "Neil" Dellacroce was born on March 15, 1914, and died on Dec. 2, 1985. (NOT Neal, as originally written, Michael DiLeonardo confirmed.)

He was a lifelong New Yorker first arrested at age 16.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Toppling Carlo Gambino on 1966 La Stella Meeting Agenda?

We left off with Aniello "Neil" Dellacroce facing allegations for attempting to unseat his crime family's namesake: Carlo Gambino.

The charge was levied at Dellacroce by the Joint Legislative Committee on Crime in a public forum seemingly designed after an earlier, national inquiry into organized crime, the McClellan Hearings.

La Stella, site of 1966 mob meeting
Where Dellacroce was arrested in 1966
for alleged plotting.

To advance the story, we next turn to Dellacroce's obituary.

The Gambino underboss (and historical mentor to John Gotti) died on Dec. 2, 1985, of cancer at age 71. The mobster's New York Times obituary, written by Ralph Blumenthal (author of the important but somwhat overlooked Last Days of the Sicilians), point-blank stated:

In 1966, Mr. Dellacroce was arrested in a police raid of the La Stella restaurant in Queens, where, the Joint Legislative Committee on Crime later charged, he and other Mafia leaders were plotting to depose Mr. Gambino...

(The La (?) Stella restaurant... Anyone else see Mickey Blue Eyes? I laughed when I read that...) Anyway, next we journey to the year 1966 and indeed discover news about Dellacroce's arrest at La Stella.

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