Associate Of "Baby Shacks" Whacked In Potential Retaliation For Robbing Gambino Mobster

A man gunned down Sunday morning in what Rhode Island law enforcement authorities say was a gangland hit was a known associate of former New England Mafia boss Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio who had robbed an alleged associate of the Gambino crime family, as per a Target 12 report.

Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio.
Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio.

Napoloen Andrade, 37, of Central Falls, was shot in the shadow of the Pawtucket halfway house where he was sent prior to his release. 

Andrade — who has a lengthy criminal record that includes violent crime and drug trafficking— was finishing a sentence for his role in a 2010 Connecticut home invasion of a Gambino crime family associate, 78.

In 2014, Andrade was convicted for the robbery.

"He has a lot of enemies," retired R.I. State Police Col. Steven O'Donnell, a veteran mob investigator, told Target 12. "There are a lot of people, based on things that have happened over his lifetime — it could push law enforcement in 10 different directions."

At his sentencing for the home invasion in 2014, Assistant U.S. Attorney Gerard Sullivan called Andrade "a career criminal and a brutal man."

During the robbery, Andrade lunged at the Gambino associate, "threw a football tackle on him, bound him, and put a towel over his head." The  associate has not been identified by name in reports.

There is "little question" that detectives are looking into whether the murder was retribution for the home invasion. 

Andrade previously worked as a bouncer at Providence-area strip clubs with ties to organized crime.

"He's an enforcer; he's the type of person when he shows up at your door you're going to do what you’re asked to do," O'Donnell said. "It was unusual to have a mob boss trusting someone outside the mob family. That relationship developed over years and Louie Manocchio trusted him."

Manocchio, 91, was released from federal prison in 2015 after serving five-and-a-half years for shaking down strip clubs for protection money. The case was part of Mafia Takedown Day, a sweeping 2011 crackdown on organized crime.

O'Donnell said there is "little question" that detectives are looking into whether the murder was retribution  for the home invasion. Pawtucket police probably have questioned another resident of the halfway house: mob capo Edward "Eddie" Lato, he said.

Lato, 71, is wrapping up  a nine-year sentence after pleading guilty in the same case as Manocchio.

"I think they interview everyone in that house," O'Donnell said. "Some people may interview with them, some may choose not to."

Christian Schiavone, communications director for Community Resources for Justice, the nonprofit that runs the halfway house, said the murder "appears to have been an isolated incident. Out of an abundance of caution, we are taking some additional security measures, but we remain confident that the program is secure.”

Schiavone also said the group is "fully cooperating with law enforcement."

Andrade has been charged nearly a dozen times in the last 18 years by local law enforcement. He's been investigated by the Fed's multiple times, including on gun and drug charges.

Napoloen Andrade
Napoloen Andrade

An FBI spokesperson referred questions to Pawtucket police leaders, saying it was their investigation.

A Rhode Island State Police spokesperson said the agency has a detective assigned to the federal Safe Streets Task Force assisting in the case.

"If the Andrade murder turns out to be an orchestrated hit with ties to members or associates of La Cosa Nostra, it will be the first one in Rhode Island in nearly a quarter-century, " Target 12 reported.

In the early morning of April 1, 1994, two people were shot and killed inside the Hockey Fans Social Club in Cranston. Mobster Antonino "Nino" Cucinotta — former driver for boss Raymond Patriarca — pleaded guilty four years later to charges that he executed fellow mobster Ronnie Coppola and associate Peter Scarpellino, Target 12 reported.

O'Donnell said Andrade's murder could also send ripple effects through the region, and may force some to seek government protection. He singled out mob captain Robert DeLuca and his brother, mobster Joseph DeLuca, both of whom testified against former boss Francis "Cadillac Frank" Salemme.

"Never underestimate that family," O'Donnell said, referring to La Cosa Nostra. "It's up to those people if they want to move ... if they don't want to go it’s their peril, but I would be paying attention to that if I was on the street."

Robert DeLuca is currently in prison after pleading guilty to charges that he lied to investigators.