No News on Mistrial; We Ponder Turncoats Who Gamed the System

Anthony Nicodemo
Predicting the future is a fool's game, especially for blogs and newspapers.

Usually, no matter what certain indicators and talking heads say, the forecast ends up wrong -- and the result is a crack in credibility, probably the most valuable intangible in the world (it's up there with loyalty and honor). Just ask the Chicago Tribune, which despite its November 3, 1948 whopper, is still around to answer.

So I'm not making any predictions here. Just doing a little speculating. Followed by some pondering.

A recent mob trial came to an abrupt end after the prosecution made its case. Allegations were tossed about that one or more jurors may have been approached for nefarious purposes and that detectives were "investigating" the matter. reported on May 22: "The loss of two male jurors - the trial's last remaining alternate juror and Juror No. 8 - brought the trial to an end on the morning Nicodemo's lawyers were to begin the defense case." That could very well be the case but it doesn't negate potential opportunistic capitalization. (In other words, the story about the jurors could be true, obviously, but that doesn't mean it couldn't have been used to hide someone maybe taking advantage of a certain situation behind the scenes...)

We do have some history to fall back on. Anyone can game the system, good guy or bad...

It is now nine days later and, unless I am missing anything -- and if I am, please tell me -- we have yet to hear anything more about these two jurors. Nothing official, nothing leaked regarding what happened, why the mistrial was declared. Why is this such a goddamn secret. Or, as we more respectfully asked: Why Can't We Know Why? 

Joey Merlino, left, and Ligambi
In the story The Question Arises: Will Nicodemo Testify, it was noted that Nicodemo has been identified by New Jersey authorities as a suspect in the 2003 murder of mobster John "Johnny Gongs" Casasanto, one of three unsolved murders that occurred during Ligambi's reign.

Furthermore, law enforcement sources have indicated that Nicodemo could work a deal by giving up what he knows about the Casasanto murder and other acts of violence that authorities believe are linked to mob boss Joseph "Uncle Joe" Ligambi and his top associates."

We have speculated in the past about the odd timing of this snafu (snafus, literally, happen more often than not in Mafia trials -- snafu: "Situation Normal: All Fucked Up"); the mistrial was declared just after the prosecution rested and the defense knew exactly what it's up against.

Further, we also noted Nicodemo's hand would be much stronger if he flipped before he lost what was essentially an unwinnable trial. The defense attorneys were up against common sense as much as the murder of a drug dealer turned informant.

So there's that. Now, we move on to pondering. We do a little pondering -- not predicting, not even speculating further... Just a little pondering -- only that and nothing more... We just want to note a few instances we were aware of in which the Feds played with timelines. (Any potential connections you see to the Nicodemo trial are certainly intentional...)

As part of a 2008 racketeering plea, John Alite admitted involvement in two murders, four murder
conspiracies, at least eight shootings and two attempted shootings. Armed home invasions and armed
robberies in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Florida also were part of the plea agreement.

Previously, Alite had played a starring role in the 2006 trial of Ronald "Ronnie One Arm" Trucchio and three co-defendants in Tampa, Florida.

John Alite, at his arrest.
Alite and Trucchio, a captain in the Gambino crime family, were business partners, federal prosecutors said. Whoever Alite was and whatever he did, it's surprising that his name was mentioned at all, since Alite wasn't even in the courtroom at the time; he had fled the country before he could be charged (who was his mole?) and was later arrested in Brazil, where he was imprisoned while he fought extradition to the U.S., where he knew a nightmare awaited him.

For some reason (and we now know the reason) he was not tried in absentia along with Ronnie. Alite was still in a South American prison when Trucchio was given a life sentence at the end of the Tampa trial; the year prior, he was convicted by a Miami federal jury on racketeering charges and sentenced to 20 years in prison.

I am not a lawyer but I get a whiff of something unlawful about a trial in which a person not in the courtroom and not even on trial in absentia should still be part of the prosecution's case.

Looking through online newspaper coverage of the 2006 Tampa trial, I noticed something interesting. As reported: "The Tampa trial began with an unusual twist when Trucchio opted to represent himself because [his lawyer, Joseph] Corozzo was stuck in another Mafia-related trial in New York City.

"My hand to God, I don't deserve to be here," Trucchio told jurors during his opening statement. "This is an abomination." For almost a week, Trucchio cross-examined the government's witnesses. Corozzo took over when he arrived Oct. 30."

Ronnie acted as his own attorney -- and almost won!

The jury took five days to deliberate. "After deliberating four days, jurors said Tuesday they had reached a verdict for three defendants but were deadlocked on the fourth. Court papers show they were undecided on Trucchio, alleged captain or "capo" of the Tampa crew," according to the same report.

Something changed on the fifth day, however. "It's unfortunate that the jurors who didn't think my client was guilty did not stand strong because my client was not guilty of these charges," Corozzo said in the report.

John Alite, as we know, lost his extradition battle and his criminal career ended on Jan. 16, 2008, when he signed a plea agreement with federal prosecutors.
We finally arrive at the point to this lengthy preamble: How many of you knew that Alite's deal was kept secret, however, until December -- almost an entire year.
Okay. Now hold that in one hand.
Tony Lodi, under arrest, looks
quite surprised at his fate.
Anthony "Tony Lodi" Cardinalle was indicted in 2013, one of 32 defendants nailed following a multi-year FBI probe into the mob's control of the private sanitation industry in New York and New Jersey. "Tony Lodi" was allegedly one of nine members of a three-family panel said to have been in control of private garbage collection routes, all of whom pleaded guilty before their racketeering trial could begin. In addition to the Genovese family, the Gambinos and Lucheses also were involved in the racket.

Genovese capo Tino Fiumara had run the Lodi crew until his death in September 2010. The Feds had started the probe with the powerhouse capo as their target. But then Fiumara died, so the Feds were stuck with an unknown gangster named "Papa Smurf" as the lead figure in the case -- and media stories. 

Aside from the fact that the main witness in the case, the citizen informant around whom the entire case is built is a friggin pedophile -- more on that story coming soon -- Cardinalle began cooperating with the FBI and Manhattan U.S. Attorney's office a week before Christmas 2013, although GangLand News reported that, according to sources, Cardinalle has been talking to the Feds months longer than that.

One last example of the Feds playing with timelines of turncoats: Hector Pagan, ex-husband of Renee Graziano, testified in Brooklyn Federal Court this past March that he had become a government informant in 2006 — a full five years before he agreed to wear a wire against father-in-law Anthony Graziano and other Bonanno ranking mobsters; and a full five years before we were told he had flipped...

Here endeth the ponderment.


  1. Well its been 9 days since we heard anything with 3 jurors dissmissed u think maybe
    somebody was bought also Ronny the wig Galati was indicted for a third time along with his wife and son Ron jr also UncleJoes son Steven ligambi 14 people arrested with another 27 to be picked up. Uncle Joes wife Olivia was also a secratary at American collisions in So philly. Rumor also has it that Galatis daughter and boyfriend are in wittness protection with that said summers in So philly are usually spent at shore rentals in longport sea isle avalon this summer looks like som families will be spending that money on bailing themselves out of Jail instead . As for Nicodemo the brothers in the joint will protect his ass ad long as the cash keeps coming in.

    1. Where did you find this info?

    2. Except for maybe the jurors being bought and thats a good possibility evetything else is as true as it gets miley

    3. I read some of that, about Ligambi's son becoming ensnared in this case.

    4. Pretty much UJ whole family and his Nephew Anthony Borgesi Brother of Capo/New Boss Boy George Borgesi
      Why they havent mentioned everybody in the article though is puzzeling

  2. Don't forget about Reynold Maragni, they let him out on bail because of health reasons after being detained as a danger to the community, after he secretly cut a deal and was wearing a wire.



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