October 13, 2014 |
JOEY MERLINO is crossing Market Street wearing a pair of oversized aviator sunglasses on an overcast day. Dark suit, dark tan. A copious amount of gel keeps his slicked-back hair locked in place, but the orange-and-blue floral tie keeps you guessing. You don't know whether he's going to shake your hand, punch you in the mouth or buy your family a Thanksgiving turkey. The 30-something gangster they used to call "Skinny Joey" on Passyunk Avenue in the 1990s is now a muscular 52-year-old who actually looks like the ruthless mob boss that prosecutors have described in past indictments.
October 10, 2014 |
FEDERAL prosecutors yesterday called it "laughable" that Joey Merlino would suggest that his run-in this year with three convicted felons - including a co-defendant in his 2001 racketeering trial - was just a "chance encounter. " Such an idea is "belied by evidence," Assistant U.S. Attorney David Troyer wrote in a court filing. "Skinny Joey," 52, the former Philly mob boss - or current boss-in-exile, some law-enforcement officials say - is due in federal court in Philly tomorrow to answer the government's allegations that he knowingly associated with mobster John Ciancaglini and two guys with fraud convictions at Havana Nights Cigar Bar & Lounge in Boca Raton, Fla. The government also says that Merlino, who now lives in Boca Raton, has not fully paid $337,943 in court-ordered restitution and failed to comply with a request for information during a May financial deposition.
October 8, 2014 |
SINCE HIS RELEASE from federal prison in 2011, Joey Merlino has been working hard, keeping his nose clean and making monthly restitution payments. He even volunteered with a group that trains teachers who work with children with autism. But he did not violate his probation. That's what Merlino's lawyers, Edwin Jacobs Jr. and Michael F. Myers, wrote in a legal memo filed yesterday, claiming that Merlino has "scrupulously abided" by the terms of his supervised release while living in Florida.
September 9, 2014 |
JOEY MERLINO insists that he's gone legit, but the number of people who actually believe him is dwindling. Sort of like the mob. The former South Philly mob boss - or current boss-in-exile, some law-enforcement officials would say - is facing a new round of legal troubles. Merlino, 52, will have to travel from his home in South Florida to Philadelphia in the coming weeks to face allegations that he violated the terms of his probation by associating with two felons and a member of La Cosa Nostra in mid-June.
September 4, 2014 |
IS FORMER mob boss Joseph "Skinny Joey" Merlino getting into the restaurant business in Florida? GossipExtra.com, run by Miami Herald contributor/former New York Daily News reporter Jose Lambiet , seems to think so. Lambiet reports that Merlino and investors will open a restaurant "in the heart of Boca Raton," which Merlino has called home since completing his 14-year prison stint for racketeering. Lambiet quotes business broker Daron Tersakyan , who was not familiar with Merlino but confirmed that investors "want to set up a high-end, South Philadelphia-style Italian place.
April 19, 2014 |
CAMDEN The meeting at a North Jersey bar was convened to set things straight. Contrary to rumors bouncing around the Philadelphia-New Jersey mob world, Pete "the Crumb" Caprio did not have a hit out on Nicodemo S. Scarfo, son of the jailed, infamous mob boss. "If it was so, I said you would have been gone a long time ago," said Caprio to an associate in a secretly taped conversation of the meeting. The February 2000 recording - by mob associate and government informant Philip "Philly Fay" Casale - was played for jurors and dissected by lawyers Thursday in Scarfo's FirstPlus mortgage fraud trial, well into its fourth month.
January 8, 2014 |
MAYBE THE Philadelphia mob fizzled out when Joey Merlino got pinched in 1999. Or maybe it continued to thrive well into the 21st century on a steady diet of video-poker revenue and loan-sharking juice. Depends on your benchmarks for a successful criminal organization. But those photos? They were a bad idea. As closing arguments began yesterday in the retrial of reputed mob boss Joseph "Uncle Joe" Ligambi and his nephew George Borgesi, federal prosecutors broke out the photo album again.
January 2, 2014 |
PHILADELPHIA A Philadelphia judge denied bail Tuesday for a reputed mob associate charged with attempting to have three people killed, including a grand jury witness. The alleged crimes of Ronald Galati strike at the "heart of the justice system" and leave witnesses fearing for their lives, said Common Pleas Court Judge Charles Ehrlich. He sent Galati back to prison to await trial on charges of attempted murder, solicitation of murder, witness intimidation, and retaliation. "This case will be decided in the courtroom and not on the streets," the judge said.
December 20, 2013 |
City officials defended their contract with a South Philadelphia garage on Wednesday, a day after questions arose about its ties to a reputed mob associate now charged in a murder-for-hire case. Over the last four years, the city has paid American Collision & Automotive Center, an auto-body shop run by the children of Ronald Galati, nearly $1.3 million for repair work to fleet vehicles, including police cruisers. Galati, a 63-year-old employee of the business with close ties to former Philadelphia mob boss Joey Merlino and consigliere George Borgesi, was charged Saturday with solicitation to commit murder, witness retaliation, and intimidation.
December 19, 2013 |
RONALD GALATI, a South Philly fraudster and reputed mob associate at the center of a triple murder-for-hire investigation, has earned hundreds of thousands of dollars from a lucrative contract to repair and maintain Philadelphia Police Department vehicles, the Daily News has learned. Galati, 63, identified by authorities as a onetime associate of mobsters Joey Merlino and George Borgesi, was able to land the contract despite a 1994 racketeering conviction for turning one of his auto-body garages into what federal prosecutors described as a "shop of fraud.