Indicted: Gambino Capo, Associates of 4 Mafia Families

Gambino capo Michael "Mickey Boy" Paradiso, whose mob roots predate the tumultuous John Gotti reign (though his current rank as capo does not), and some two dozen associates from four of New York's five crime families were indicted for a grab-bag of mob mainstay crimes.

Marijuana sales were a key racket detailed in the indictment.

Two women were also indicted with the mobsters, of whom only Paradiso is a made Mafia member. All those named in the indictment face drug, illegal online gambling and tax-fraud charges resulting from a two-year probe that was part of a Waterfront Commission investigation regarding drug trafficking on New York's piers.

Paradiso has been a made member since before the first Gotti administration.

And, as Jerry Capeci noted in his latest Gangland News column: Paradiso played a role in something that's puzzled us -- specifically that bizarre hit attempt on psycho Luchese underboss Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso, which led to him whacking key members of Gotti's inner circle.

Basically, the attempt on Gaspipe went like this: Gambino associates Nicholas Guido and James Hydell (plus one unidentified man) pulled up in a car (maybe a Plymouth Fury) to where "Gaspipe" Casso was sitting behind the wheel of his parked Lincoln Town Car and opened fire -- five times -- with a 12-gauge shotgun. (And despite the point-blank-range distance, they didn't hit Gaspipe five times.) Although wounded, Casso survived, taking refuge in a nearby restaurant's basement freezer.

Shot twice he managed to call Luchese boss Vittorio "Vic" Amuso, who picked the underboss up and drove him to the hospital.

According to Gangland News, "Micky Boy" was named as having "long been linked to the September, 1985 attempt to whack Luchese underboss Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso by a ragtag crew of family associates."

[The failed hit occurred in 1986.]

Selwyn Raab noted in Five Families that Gaspipe immediately suspected Paradiso was behind the hit as the Luchese underboss had been feuding with the Gambino capo over the "the division of spoils from a heroin sale."

Mickey Boy Paradiso 

Current Case

As for the current indictment, more than 20 individuals in total face charges related to multiple schemes involving the distribution of marijuana and oxycodone pills, an illegal gambling operation, and tax fraud.

Paradiso was recorded in "several wiretapped talks last year, according to a six-count indictment," as Gangland News reported.

The indictment was unveiled earlier this week by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., New York City Police Commissioner William J. Bratton, and Waterfront Commissioner Ronald Goldstock.

The defendants were charged in multiple New York State Supreme Court indictments with crimes including Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the Second and Third Degrees, Criminal Sale of Marijuana in the First Degree, Criminal Tax Fraud in the Third Degree, Promoting Gambling in the First Degree, and Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree, among other charges.

“Whether the alleged offer was marijuana, pills, or a return on bets placed through an unlawful gambling operation, the defendants developed a comprehensive system of monetizing illicit activities and trade,” said Vance.

“In this case, the alleged schemes generated millions of dollars in illegal revenue for the defendants, virtually none of which was reported, and likely all of which went straight into the defendants’ pockets.”

Police Commissioner William J. Bratton said: “As alleged, these individuals were responsible for, among other things, an elaborate cross-country drug running scheme that farmed pot in California and sold it in New York City. Today their gig is up.”

Commissioner Ronald Goldstock of the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor, said: “This case grew out of a broader investigation involving multiple schemes with ties to the waterfront. Our efforts to combat crime and corruption in the Port of New York-New Jersey are ongoing, and additional cases will be announced in the near future.”

Marijuana Distribution Scheme

Between February 2014 and November 2015, more than 20 defendants are charged with participating in a scheme to cultivate and purchase marijuana grown in California, transport the marijuana to New York, and distribute the marijuana to buyers and sellers for a profit of hundreds of thousands of dollars per month.

During this time, John Kelly, 52, and Richard Sinde, 51, are charged with acting as the ringleaders of the operation. Other defendants provided assistance such as coordinating the collection and shipment of hundreds of pounds of marijuana from California to New York for distribution and resale.

Destiny Saetern, 32, and Michael Giammarinaro, 43, are charged with assisting with the cultivation of medical-grade marijuana on farms in California and purchasing marijuana from other local growers for export to New York. The marijuana was typically mailed by U.S. Postal Service in individual packages weighing between from five to 15 pounds. Sometimes, the product was boxed and loaded onto vans and other vehicles for transport. Vehicles are known to have transported up to 150 pounds worth of pot.

Stephen Gallo, 64, is charged with acting as a primary distributor and seller. GALLO picked up packages of marijuana from UPS stores throughout Manhattan and transported the packages to storage locations until the contents could be redistributed and sold.

Louis Paone, 58, Edward Pullini, 48, and Barry Sussman, 56, participated in the scheme by allowing the other defendants to store, unpack, and process the marijuana at locations they sanctioned for use, including Paone’s personal residence, Pullini’s relative’s business premises, and Sussman’s warehouse in Long Island.

Gallo then delivered and sold the marijuana to co-defendants who participated in the transportation, re-distribution, and sale of the marijuana, including: Ivan Gabbe, 55, John Gillette, 31, Christopher Kelly, 49, Vincent Molinari, 52, Carl Muraco, 52, John Muraco, 67, William Oliva, 55, Michael Paradiso, 76, Frank Parisi, 60, and Todd Poskitt, 54. Gallo is also charged with selling marijuana directly to two undercover NYPD detectives posing as buyers.

Following the indictment and subsequent incarceration of Sinde on a separate criminal matter in June 2015, Lawrence Dentico, 33, assumed greater responsibility for working with John Kelly and coordinating the shipping and distribution of marijuana from California, where Dentico resided and oversaw farming operations, to New York.

Sinde was rounded up as part of the Nicky "Mouth" Santora bust but copped a plea and is serving a two- to six-year prison sentence upstate, records show. He was the one Anthony “Skinny” Santoro was speaking to Sinde when he noted (unknowingly on tape) how a group of foes was "making jerk-s out of people... Someone's gonna get f---ing hurt," based on wiretaps.

Kelly’s wife, Zhanna Dumorne, 39, also assisted her husband by funneling the proceeds of the scheme from New York to California through the use of a fictitious corporation, Regional Food Brokers, Inc.

In total, the marijuana distribution scheme is alleged to have generated more than $15 million in illegal revenue, based on average proceeds of more than $350,000 per month over a 21-month period.

Oxycodone Distribution Scheme

As charged in a separate indictment, between April 2014 and March 2015, Gallo, Gillette, and a co-defendant, Christopher Alvino, 72, also profited from the sale of hundreds of illicitly acquired prescription pills. As part of the scheme, Alvino supplied Gallo with oxycodone pills, which were then provided to Gillette for redistribution, or sold to individual buyers—which, in at least two cases, included undercover NYPD detectives posing as customers. The oxycodone distribution scheme is alleged to have generated at least $18,000 in profit, based solely on the transactions between the defendants and undercover detectives.

Gambling Scheme

Between November 2014 and November 2015, a separate indictment charges Frank Galesi, 50, as well as Gallo, Parisi, and Carl Muraco, with conspiring to profit from illegal gambling. As part of the scheme, Galesi maintained a set of bettors, dealt directly with a gambling wire room, and served as a liaison for Carl Muraco, who acted as a master agent and maintained a master account to manage bettor accounts associated with a gambling website. Gallo and Parisi acted as Carl Muraco’s agents and were responsible for managing their own sets of bettors under Carl Muraco’s account with the wire room, recruiting new bettors, and collecting and distributing funds between winners and losers. The defendants shared losses and split the winnings, and for their role in the scheme, each individual received a so-called percentage or commission for his services.

The illegal gambling scheme is alleged to have generated more than $1 million in revenue, based on records corresponding to bets placed through the wire room website.

Tax Fraud

Finally, six separate indictments charge individual defendants with tax fraud for failing to submit tax returns corresponding to illegal income generated.