Luchese Capo Steve Crea Jr Cops To Plotting To Kill Bonanno Associate, But Not Meldish

Luchese captain Steven Crea Jr. admitted to plotting with his father, underboss Steven Crea, to kill Bonanno associate Carl Ulzheimer in 2012 following a Bronx social club encounter that Crea Senior deemed a personal affront.

Steven (Wonder Boy) Crea
Crea Senior during 1980s arrest for murder.

He faces a maximum of 13 years behind bars for his part in an attempt to have another mobster whacked.

A federal indictment accused the younger Crea of participating in the slaying of Michael Meldish, 62, the one-time co-leader of a homicidal crew called the Purple Gang, but he did not admit to the killing as part of his guilty plea Tuesday, his lawyers said.

“Our client did not enter a plea of guilty to the murder of Michael Meldish because he is not guilty of that conduct. In fact, he took more time rather than enter a plea to something that is not true,” said his lawyers, Joseph DiBenedetto and Seth Ginsburg in a statement Tuesday night.

Crea Jr., 46, passed a polygraph exam last November administered by retired FBI veteran Jeremiah Hanafin, "best known for conducting a test on Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser, Christine Blasey Ford," as the News reported.

As noted here, Luchese underboss Steven (Wonder Boy) Crea of Tuckahoe ordered Vincent Bruno and alleged Yonkers mobster Paul "Paulie Roast Beef" Cassano to kill Carl Ulzheimer, a Bonanno crime family associate who lived in the Bronx in 2012, according to the Feds.

Specifically, the Feds alleged that in 2012, "armed members and associates of the Bonanno Family of La Cosa Nostra forced their way into a Bronx social club controlled by the Luchese Family." During the ensuing confrontation, Ulzheimer, a Bonanno associate, "acted in a manner that a leader of the Luchese Family, Steven L. Crea perceived as a personal affront. To avenge this supposed offense, Crea Sr. ordered his son, Steven D. Crea to have the Associate killed." Crea Jr. passed the order to Paul Cassano and Bruno. On a subsequent night, the two traveled to Ulzheimer’s Bronx residence, where Bruno, hefting a pistol, tried to find Ulzheimer and kill him, but failed.

"The dispute between the rival families was then resolved before the murder was carried out."

 Bruno was among 19 reputed mobsters arrested in a May 2017 sweep that targeted "the Lower Hudson Valley's most notorious organized-crime figures."

Bruno pleaded guilty to attempted murder in aid of a racketeering conspiracy; specifically, to attempting to kill, and conspiring to kill, Bronx Bonanno associate Ulzheimer in 2012.