Philadelphia Mafia Bust: FBI Smashes South-Jersey Drug Pipeline

Hierarchy of Philadelphia Cosa Nostra identified in complaint

See below
Following a two-year probe, the FBI last week arrested a soldier and two associates of the Philadelphia mob in South Jersey on drug-related charges.
Garden state gangsters
Garden State Parkway was drug pipeline.

The FBI describes the  case as a dismantling of a drug pipeline running nearly the length of the Garden State Parkway.

The men, all of whom have drug convictions, were indicted and arrested on March 14 for selling drugs across the state. The case also involved confidential sources--one, CS-1 in the indictment, is "a made member of the Philadelphia LCN" who's been giving the FBI information since 2015; he's also "personally familiar with numerous associates and members" of the Philadelphia mob -- and undercover agents.

Joseph Servidio, 58, of Upper Township, New Jersey, was identified as a soldier in the Philadelphia Cosa Nostra by FBI Special Agent Mark R. Hindle. Also arrested were Carl Chianese, 79, of Point Pleasant, and Michael Gallicchio, 49, of Garfield. The case also is allegedly tied to the Boston mob.

The three are charged with possession with intent to sell and conspiracy to sell various drugs, including methamphetamine, heroin, and fentanyl, according to the complaints. The crew also trafficked in stolen cigarettes.

Footnote about CS-1

"The FBI built its case on recordings and other information gathered by confidential sources and undercover agents," the Asbury Park Press reported.

Download full complaint

On Feb. 9, 2017, Servidio told an informant recording him how difficult it was to beat a case with an informant recording him, according to the complaint. He'd rather face an eyewitness, he explained.

"Eighty percent of eyewitnesses got the wrong person," he told the informant, as per the transcript. "The things you can't beat are the tapes ... with you saying it, that's what you did, you know."

He "went on to discuss not talking about criminal activity with or around certain people."

Servidio also was recorded explaining how he ran a legitimate business as a front for his illegal revenue.

"I'm a criminal, everything I do is criminal, I got to get out of it," Servidio said last July. "Last year I robbed an armored car to break even."

Over about two years, Chianese, Gallicchio, Servidio, plus the informants, undercover agents, and others, met "frequently" at various places, including their homes, restaurants, even rest stops along the Parkway, mainly to trade cash and drugs. Also, they occasionally bickered "over the quality of the drugs they were getting," according to the complaints.

They did take precautions, such as using "coded language" to discuss drug deals. They also frequently switched cell phones.

It also was last July when Servidio told an informant that he and Chianese were planning to shoot a Mafia associate "whom (Servidio) suspected of talking openly and disparagingly about (Servidio's) criminal activity," according to the complaint.

Servidio's attorney, Marco A. Laracca of Orange, told the Press: "We're in the very beginning stages of this case and for me to comment on the strengths or weaknesses of the government's case would be irresponsible."

"My client maintains his innocence and we intend to defend this case," Laracca said. "My client denies any involvement in organized crime."

All three men are convicted drug runners.

Beginning in 2006 Gallicchio spent seven years in prison for conspiracy to distribute oxycodone. Chianese was twice convicted for distributing meth, and spent 16 years in federal prison, getting out at the beginning of 2015. Servidio went to prison in December 2006 and stayed until April 2011 for selling cocaine.

Chianese was on supervised release at the time of his arrest on March 14.

As of yesterday, all three remained in federal custody in Philadelphia.