Showing posts from December, 2015

Taboo Topic? Mafiosi and the Church

Frank Costello's mausoleum, with the front gate blown apart. "Lilo" heralding his return to the streets.... This is a revise of an old story that I've been sitting on entirely too long.... Italy has exported two global entities -- the Mafia and the Catholic Church. Ironic. Made men generally are Roman-Catholics. Still, not much has been generally written about Mafiosi making (or not making) peace with the New Testament God before shuffling off this mortal coil. At the same time, Sicilian or Italian mobsters are very dedicated to their faith. In fact, some of them study the bible.  "In Italy, there is not a single Mafioso who isn't religious," Padre Nino Fasullo, an anti-Mafia priest in Italy, once said. "For a phenomenon like the Mafia, which has no intellectual justification at all, religion may represent the only ideological apparatus to which it can refer . ... We're all in the church. Even the Mafia. Unfortunately. The church is e

Giving Friends of Ours Blog Due Credit

Vito Genovese may have single-handedly done more damage to the Mafia than any other mobster. Taking a cue from my good friend over at Friends of Ours , who did this on the appropriate date, I am posting, for posterity's sake, the New York Daily News's original 1957 article on Appalachin.  The Friends of Ours blogger , Philip Crawford Jr., has an excellent book available now: The Mafia and the Gays . It is an historical analysis of the Mafia's control of gay bars in major U.S. cities, including New York and Chicago. The unjust illegality of such establishments essentially green-lighted the Mafia to come in and cater to that demand.

New England Mafia "Sleeps with the Fishes?"

Reputed New England boss "Spucky" Spagnolo is 72. Two New England Mafiosi in their 70s, including the alleged acting Patriarca crime family boss, are going to prison after copping to a years-long extortion scheme in federal court.  On December 16, Antonio “Spucky” Spagnolo, 73, and Pryce “Stretch” Quintina, 75, pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to affect commerce by extortion. Prosecutors alleged that Spagnolo, of Revere is the acting boss of the New England Mafia. Co-defendant, Quintina, also of Revere, reported to Spagnolo, prosecutors said. Both men pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Boston to charges of conspiracy to affect commerce by extortion for threatening the owner of the Revere Moose Lodge and another businessman, the Boston Globe  reported , If Judge Patti B. Saris approves a plea agreement between prosecutors and the two mobsters, Spagnolo will be sentenced to two years in prison and Quintana to 18 months. A senten

Who Really Killed Tommy Two-Guns DeSimone?

It's one of gangland's most high-profile, enigmatic hits -- and the identity of the killer has been debated for decades. Joe Pesci immortalized a vicious killer in Goodfellas. Thomas "Tommy Two-Guns" DeSimone killed a made member of  the Mafia  -- and for that, among other things, he was killed in what's been described as a classic setup. The truth is, we know very little about this murder, including who pulled the trigger. (Or fired up the chainsaw, depending on who you believe). DeSimone disappeared, meaning there's zero evidence as to how he was killed; in fact, it can't be said with absolute certainty that he was killed. Still, he was killed . Guys like him don't just disappear into thin air.  They'd never leave New York because everything they want -- a certain lifestyle, basically -- is in New York and cannot be duplicated anywhere else.  At the same time, there's no shortage of answers as to who and the why. Answers sell books an

Linda Scarpa's Mafia Daughter Memoir Debuts

Linda Scarpa's memoir about life with the mob hitter known as the Grim Reaper aka Greg Scarpa. Click on the cover to purchase.... By Nick Christophers, guest contributor, editor of Mob Candy (see his website ): We have been inundated with books, films and TV shows on the subject of the Mafia over the years. Wives, girlfriends and daughters have taken to the pen to expose their experiences. Yet many of them have either “sugar-coated” their stories or they really had no knowledge of “the life.” One of the earliest books that delved deep into the life was “ Mafia Marriage ” by Rosalie Bonanno, who was married to Salvatore Vincent “ Bill” Bonanno , the son of Cosa Nostra boss Joseph Bonanno . Since then there have been many attempts to expose the true meaning of living in that world, e.g., “ This Family of Mine ” by Victoria Gotti, daughter of John Gotti, former boss of the Gambino crime family; “ The Godfather’s Daughter ” by Rita Gigante, daughter of Vincent Louis G