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Echoes Of Ancient Rome In American Cosa Nostra?

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Is the structure of the New York Mafia somehow based on the Roman legions? (We recently received an email posing that question.) It all started about 100 years ago with a Sicilian mobster named Salvatore Maranzano, who was the capo of the Castellammarese clans. Salvatore Maranzano on September 10, 1931. The Fascist government of Benito Mussolini kicked him out of Italy in the 1920s.  Maranzano came to America and established a bootlegging empire while also forging an identity within the New York underworld. He also spent an inordinate amount of time ensuring everyone around him knew that he once studied for the priesthood, was able to speak Latin, and enjoyed reading history books about ancient Rome. (Julius Caesar was his idol.) Shortly after the death of chief rival Joe (The Boss) Masseria, Maranzano reportedly put some of his knowledge of ancient Rome to practical use. (We are trying to be brief here, as we're not writing a book.) At a spring 1931 meeting of around 400 Mafia mem

Ex-Genovese Bookmaker Chicky Cecchetelli Maintains "Boundless" Optimism In Face Of Pending Federal Sentencing

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After years of eking a living on the streets around Springfield, Mass. via the illicit book-making business, David (Chicky) Cecchetelli has embarked upon a LEGITIMATE career (in film), but faces a significant obstacle: On an upcoming date, he will stand before a judge to be sentenced for a charge he caught following a December 2019 arrest.  Chicky, right, and Damian, Mt Carmel Italian Social Club. (Source: Twitter ) That pinch was as unlikely as they come. It was part of  Operation Throne Down, an FBI-DEA operation that targeted the Latin Kings  street gang organization. It had nothing to do with ex-mob guys—Chick was simply wrong-place-wrong-time tertiary damage. Cecchetelli was caught up in the massive sting by virtue of the fact that his nephew (slash roommate) Michael Cecchetelli was an East Coast leader of the street gang and consequently, was the Feds' key focus. Law enforcement hit the apartment the two shared expressly to carry out an arrest warrant for Michael, aka King Me

Genovese Family Associate Johnny Pizza Porcello Charged With Illegal Gambling, Loan Sharking

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Reputed Genovese crime family associate John (Johnny Pizza) Porcello, who the pizza trade press once described as a "tough-sounding, but actually-nice-guy," was indicted this week in Brooklyn Federal court for running an illegal sports betting ring and overseeing a loan sharking racket. Photo of Mafia Takedown Day bust in January 2011. Porcello and codefendant Ronald Seebeck, 56, both of Westchester County, allegedly together profited from a loansharking operation that ran from September 2016 through August 2021, as per Federal prosecutors. The duo also ran a sports gambling ring from 2020 through 2021 that produced more than $2,000 in daily profits. (We're basing this on a  New York Post report  by Ben Feuerherd.) Porcello of Yonkers and Seebeck of Tuckahoe both pleaded not guilty at their arraignments in Brooklyn Federal court and were released on bond, a US Attorney’s Office spokesperson said. If convicted, they face up to 20 years in prison on the loan sharking charge

Critique Of Sammy The Bull's Podcast On "A Hit Team From New York" (By Someone Who Knows)

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The following includes a detailed interview with former Gambino associate Salvatore (Fat Sal) Mangiavillano.... Update : We spoke to former Gambino capo  Michael (Mikie Scars) DiLeonardo tonight  who told us, " I certify " this story. In one of his latest podcasts, A Hit Team From New York Came To Arizona To Kill Me (see below), Salvatore (Sammy the Bull) Gravano describes what he would like to do to Thomas (Huck) Carbonaro, the Gambino soldier who more than 20 years ago flew to Arizona with associate Salvatore (Fat Sal) Mangiavillano to kill the former Gambino underboss. (Hint: Gravano doesn’t want to share a slice of pizza with Huck.) FBI surveillance: from left: Louis Saccenti, Huck, John Gammarano, Sammy Gravano.  Gravano details a hypothetical scenario that involves two guys bringing Huck into a room to have a brief chat with Sammy the Bull. “I would tell him, bro, we went through a lot. You were in my crew. I broke your cherry – you did your first hit with me.” Sammy

Mob Wives Star Renee Graziano, Daughter Of Bonanno Capo, Was Arrested Last Night For Driving While Impaired

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NEW PHOTO Mob Wives star Renee Graziano was arrested and charged with driving under the influence last night following a car crash around 10:19 pm at the intersection of Arden Avenue and Arthur Kill Road on Staten Island, according to an exclusive report today at the Daily Mail.com . . She has been charged with operating a motor vehicle while impaired, Shawn Cohen of the Daily Mail reported .  Graziano, 52, had been driving a 2020 Nissan Murano with New Jersey plates when she struck an unoccupied 2020 Jeep Wrangler. She told police she’d taken Adderall earlier in the day. She was reportedly taken to a nearby hospital for a medical review and was then transported to a local police precinct, where she was then charged with the misdemeanor. As per Daily Mail sources : Graziano was getting out of the driver’s seat when the police arrived at the scene. "She was allegedly incoherent, had watery eyes and slurred speech." DailyMail.com also reported that Graziano was seen leaving thr

When Luchese Underboss Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso Testified Before Senate Subcommittee

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UPDATED " To be honest with you, we just barely let the Gambino family in ...." Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso, referring to the stunningly profitable gasoline tax scam in testimony before the Senate Subcommittee In May 1996, for the first and only time, Luchese underboss Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso testified—before the Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, which was examining the emergence of Russian immigrant crime groups and their ties to New York's Five Families, among other crime groups. Underboss to underboss: Sammy the Bull and Gaspipe Casso walk-talk. He spoke during the brief period that was the length of his cooperation . Gaspipe, who flipped in March 1994, was booted from the program in July 1998, when Judge Frederic Block of the Federal District Court in Brooklyn found that he had breached his cooperation deal with prosecutors. Block authorized the Government to rescind the plea agreement on the grounds that Casso had bribed prison guards to smuggle co