Brutal End for Son of Violent Gambino Mobster

Carmine Carini Junior's body had been wrapped in a blue tarp and chained to a cinder block. Then, it was dropped into an inlet off Avenue U and East 58th Street in South Brooklyn.

A 5-pound bag of drywall compound had also been tied to the body, though the effort to conceal it was unsuccessful: Carini's body was found Saturday floating near a dock.

His father, who has the same name, is a known Gambino mobster who served decades for a murder he didn't commit.

With their testimony, storied mob turncoats Frank Smith and Sal Mangiavillano freed the elder Carini from prison for the murder.

Smith served major prison time for a drug-related crime that had nothing to do with him. Frank reached a much envied deal with Uncle Sam. Under it, Frank was to provide testimony against only one wiseguy, a high-level Colombo boss, after which Smith was given a new identity and moved away with his family.

Ultimately, Colombo consigliere Joel "Joe Waverly" Cacace plead guilty to murder.

Mangiavillano helped the feds convict two Gambino mobsters of plotting to kill turncoat underboss Salvatore "Sammy Bull" Gravano.

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Detectives with the 63rd Police Precinct used fingerprints to identify Carini.

While some reports describe him as a Colombo crime family associate, Gang Land News confirmed he was a Luchese associate.

Police chief of detectives Robert K. Boyce didn't bite, saying only: "His father had the O.C. ties, not him."

Law enforcement believes Carini's body had been in the water since Friday night -- which is when witnesses spied the blue tarp in which he'd been wrapped.

Cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head, the medical examiner’s office said.

"The police were still trying to figure out why he was killed and his body dumped using a Mafia-style technique," the New York Times reported.

A man found last year wearing cement shoes recall was not the victim of a gangland hit.

Aside from the key questions of who and why we wonder: Was Carini dead before his killer(s) dropped him into the water? One can barely imagine the horror he experienced in his final moments if that is the case.

Was torture involved? What are we to make of the stab wounds? He had sustained multiple stab wounds to his arms and legs?

Carini served five years for a series of armed robberies; his parole ended in October 2015.

Carini, who lived in Mill Basin, was the son of Carmine Carini, 58, who was convicted in 1985 of assassinating Brooklyn record store owner Verdi Kaja, shooting him three times in the head and dumping him from a car in 1983.

Carmine Senior served 23 years but was released in 2007 after a judge vacated the conviction.Three years prior, two federal cooperating witnesses had claimed that Vincent Carini, Carmine's cousin, confessed to killing Kaja.

Carini was allowed to walk free after copping to one count of manslaughter. He'd actually been resentenced to 7 to 21 years, time he'd already served, the New York Times reported at the time. Less than a year later, though, Carini was arrested again for committing two home invasions; he pistol-whipped a victim during one of the robberies.

Frank Smith, a legendary federal informant, fingered Carini's cousin in the slaying. Smith testified in Brooklyn Federal Court that the jailed man's cousin, Vincent Carini, had  confessed to the killing.

"Vinnie says he clipped this guy," said Smith.

Salvatore (Fat Sal) Mangiavillano also testified and what he said makes for a fascinating story.

Fat Sal took the stand in late 2004 and implicated Gambino boss Peter Gotti in the Gravano murder plot, and also told the feds he learned of Carini's innocence following a chance encounter. Sal happened to drive by Vincent Carini's home and saw him "crying on his porch."

He asked Vincent "the nature of his problem, and Vincent said that his cousin Carmine had just been convicted of a murder that he himself had committed.
Smith also learned from Vincent, a "close friend," that his "cousin Carmine was wrongfully convicted of the murder of an individual who was ... in the record business," as per Jerry Capeci, writing for The New York Sun

"Smith and Vincent Carini were much more than close friends. They were violent partners in crime. According to FBI documents, they took part in a bizarre mistaken-identity murder in March 1987. Ordered by Cacace to execute a former federal prosecutor, William Aronwald, they killed his father instead.

"Because of their monumental blunder, the hit team - Smith, Vincent Carini, and his brother, Enrico - were marked for death. The Carinis were killed three months later. Smith escaped, then got a reprieve. ..."

In the record store murder, Vincent Carini killed the man because he "owed the victim money and the victim threatened to go to the police when Vincent Carini failed to repay the money."

Activist defense lawyer Ron Kuby gave both Smith and Mangiavillano props, saying: "If federal witnessing were an Olympic event, Frank Smith and Fat Sal would bring America the gold," Kuby said. "Now [they] might set an innocent man free."

However, you can take a mobster out of prison but you can't stop him from going back: The elder Carini was released this past July.

In 2003 Carini Junior was arrested for robbing five people in a crime spree that involved Carini and another man wielding machetes and baseball bats.

Carini pleaded guilty to first-degree robbery and was sentenced to five years. Released on parole in 2009, he was violated twice, in 2011 and 2014, for failing to adhere to conditions of parole.

Carini Jr was free and clear in October 2015.

He settled in Brooklyn and opened the Fountain Blue Flower Shop on East 59th.

Carini's mother posted several messages on Facebook asking people to respect her family's privacy.

The younger Carini is survived by two young children, a son, and daughter, and a brother, news reports noted, based on the social media posts.


  1. Very interesting scenario; my gut says this is not an OC killing, but rather something that is made to look like an OC killing. But who knows. Good stuff as always Ed! Allie Shades

    1. I agree sounds like someone watched too many films. They identified two key suspects, too.....


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