Joe Isgro Pinched in Los Angeles

Joe Isgro
UPDATED: Academy Award-nominated producer, Purple Heart veteran and reputed Gambino soldier Joseph Isgro was picked up in Los Angeles last week on gambling charges, sources in Los Angeles confirmed for this blog.

He was arrested on July 18 by LAPD detectives and was being held in the Valley jail in Van Nuys. He will be brought to New York to face gambling-related charges that are close to reaching the statute of limitations.

One source told us:

They're supposed to have two NY detectives pick up Joe in L.A tomorrow and transport him to NY by commercial airline. It was good of them because if they'd brought him to NY on Friday he would have had to spend the weekend in Rikers. Now he will stay overnight at the Tombs and post surety bond when he gets to court the next day.

Isgro, who reportedly has had two heart surgeries, was not being given his medication in a timely fashion. A judge remedied the situation by ordering Isgro's release if his medication was not made available to him on an as-needed basis.

He was due to be brought to New York before or after this weekend, July 26-27.

A former record promoter, Isgro was sentenced to 50 months in federal prison in 2000 for running a loan-sharking business outside a Beverly Hills shopping center. Isgro, who spent most of 1990s fending off federal payola and racketeering charges, was accused of lending money at 5% interest a week to people in financial distress and using subordinates to threaten those who fell behind in their payments.

Isgro was a producer on the 1992 film "Hoffa" while under indictment on racketeering charges. It was reported in 2007 that he was set to produce a film about Charles "Lucky" Luciano, as well as former drug lord Pablo Escobar.

A 60-year-old Isgro, at that time, told the Los Angeles Times: "I was 15 years old when Luciano died. If someone wants to try to associate me with Luciano, then so be it. The government has wasted millions of dollars of taxpayer money chasing me..."

In a 2000 affidavit, the FBI singled out Isgro as one of 192 identifiable members of the Gambino crime family; he was said to hold the position of a mob soldier who has been under federal investigation for many years.

"I'm a soldier all right," Isgro told the LA Times. "A decorated veteran of the Vietnam War, and a proud member of the Isgro family."

Isgro broke into Hollywood 15 years ago, producing "Hoffa," a 20th Century Fox film about the mobbed-up union leader, which starred Jack Nicholson and Danny DeVito.
The article reported that, at the time, Isgro has seeking to sign several actors from "The Sopranos" to join the cast. Isgro and his associate Dan Michaels, chief of Full Force Films, have also interviewed a number of writers and directors, including Charles Matthau, son of the late actor Walter Matthau.

The article further noted that Isgro had already signed hit music producer Scott Storch to score the soundtrack and is in talks with New Line Cinema to distribute the movie, according to New Line's Joseph Khouri.