July 7, 2015 |
Former reputed Philly mob boss Ralph Natale dominated the organized crime scene in the mid 1990s. Now, he's not only telling his story, someone wants to shoot it - instead of him. Natale, who's now in the witness-protection program, reportedly got his start in crime when he took control of Local 170 of the Bartenders, Hotel, Motel and Restaurant Workers Union in Philadelphia in the mid-'70s. In 1979, he got locked up for insurance fraud and peddling cocaine. When he was paroled in 1994, around the time John Stanfa was arrested, Natale became head of one of Philly's most powerful organized crime families.
April 25, 2015 |
Joseph "Skinny Joey" Merlino is done serving his latest federal prison sentence. The former Philadelphia mob boss' four-month prison sentence was cut short Thursday by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The ruling stated that Merlino "shall be released from custody immediately. " It came just 10 days before Merlino was to have finished serving his sentence in Florida, and leaves him free to return as maitre d' at a Boca Raton, Fla., restaurant that bears his name. Merlino, 53, was sentenced last fall to four months in federal prison for violating terms of his supervised release on a 2001 racketeering conviction.
April 24, 2015 |
JOEY MERLINO has regained his freedom - no strings attached - for the first time since 1999. The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit ruled in his favor yesterday, overruling a District Court judge who had ordered Merlino to serve another four months in prison for violating the terms of his probation on a 2001 racketeering conviction. "He's out. He's a free man," Merlino's attorney, Edwin Jacobs, told the Daily News . Merlino, 53, considered the current or former boss of the Philly mob, depending whom you ask, served about three months in a Miami prison after he was caught associating with mobster John "Johnny Chang" Ciancaglini at a Florida cigar bar last year.
January 6, 2015 |
IS JOEY MERLINO still the head of the Philadelphia mob? He says no. The feds aren't so sure. But few can argue with this: He's probably the only maitre d' in the country who can do a four-month prison stint and still have a job waiting for him when he returns. Merlino, 52, must report to a federal detention center in Miami at 2 p.m. today. A Philadelphia judge ruled in October that he had violated the terms of his supervised release on a 2001 racketeering conviction by associating with an old mob pal at a cigar bar in June.
November 23, 2014 |
BOCA RATON, Fla. - A woman took Joseph Merlino's hand and towed him across the marble floor to her friends, who fussed over him, cooing. "The veal parmiagana! Fabulous!" somebody else told the maitre d' of the hot new Italian restaurant in South Florida that bears the family name. He had stopped to ask how they liked everything. "Loved the cheesecake," a woman said. "Is that your mother's recipe?" And so it went on a drizzly Friday night in the land of perpetual valet parking as the reputed former boss of the Philadelphia mob darted around the room, greeting diners.
November 19, 2014 |
FORMER Philly mob boss Joey Merlino will have time to perfect his "Gnocchi Mamma Rita" and "Veal South Philly" at his new Boca Raton, Fla., restaurant, Merlino's, and can enjoy his holidays in the Sunshine State. Although a federal judge in Philadelphia has denied Merlino's request to postpone his four-month prison sentence pending his appeal to the Third Circuit, the judge allowed Merlino to push back the day when he must report to prison. U.S. District Judge R. Barclay Surrick, in an order signed Friday and made public yesterday, said Merlino won't have to start his prison sentence next week, as originally ordered, but must begin it Jan. 5. Surrick last month ruled that Merlino had violated the terms of his supervised release on a 2001 racketeering conviction by meeting with a member of the Philly crime family, John "Johnny Chang" Ciancaglini, in a Boca Raton cigar bar in June.
November 8, 2014 |
When the restaurant bearing his name opens Friday, former Philadelphia mob boss Joseph "Skinny Joey" Merlino will be doing what he does best - holding court - as front-door host of the posh Italian spot in Boca Raton, Fla. His lawyers, meanwhile, have turned to a court of a different sort, hoping to keep their client out of prison long enough to see the eatery past its first few weeks. The 52-year-old dapper don, who recently appeared in federal court in a sharp gray suit and purple tie, is due to report Nov. 24 to a South Florida prison to serve out a four-month sentence for a probation violation.
October 29, 2014 |
JOEY MERLINO is headed back to prison again - this time for four months - after a judge ruled yesterday that he violated the terms of his probation from a 2001 racketeering conviction by hanging out with a mob pal at a Florida cigar bar in June. The former Philadelphia mob boss did not seem particularly troubled by that development. Maybe it's because he's already spent nearly a third of his life in prison. Four months is practically a weekend getaway. "I could use a good four months.
October 23, 2014 |
JOEY MERLINO is due back in Philadelphia this week for a probation-violation hearing after a federal judge rejected the cockamamie legal argument presented by the reputed mobster's lawyers. Merlino, 52, who was convicted of racketeering in 2001, was slapped with the violation notice Sept. 2 - four days before his supervised released period was scheduled to end - for allegedly associating with an old mob buddy and two fraudsters at a Florida cigar bar in June. In court earlier this month, Merlino's attorney, Edwin Jacobs Jr., had tried to convince U.S. District Judge R. Barclay Surrick that Merlino was a free man because the government had failed to issue an official summons and set a court date by Sept.