April 9, 2016 |
Federal authorities charged a pioneer in the multibillion-dollar payday-loan industry Thursday in the Justice Department's latest and largest case aimed at stifling abusive lenders who have evaded state and federal regulation with stunning efficiency. Prosecutors allege that Charles M. Hallinan - a 75-year-old former investment banker, a Wharton School graduate, and a Main Line resident - dodged each new law meant to stifle usurious loans by paying established banks and Native American tribes to serve as fronts for his loan companies.
December 19, 2013 |
FOLLOW THE money, right? Depending on who's talking, the money flow could appear shady or innocent. During the federal racketeering conspiracy retrial of reputed Philly mob boss Joseph Ligambi, 74, and his nephew, onetime mob consigliere George Borgesi, 50, jurors yesterday looked at two charts showing fund disbursements to a reputed mob leader, Anthony "Ant" Staino Jr., and to Ligambi's wife, Olivia Ligambi. The money came from JMA Industries Inc., for which Staino filed an application for a fictitious name in 2001 with the Pennsylvania Department of State.
February 15, 2013
A federal judge set a Feb. 25 bail hearing Thursday for reputed mob boss Joseph Ligambi after a jury acquitted him of some charges and deadlocked on others. U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno set the date a day after Ligambi's lawyer, Edwin Jacobs, argued in a motion that Ligambi, 73, has been jailed for nearly two years, having been held awaiting trial. On Feb. 5, jurors convicted four of his codefendants on five counts, but returned not-guilty verdicts on 46 other counts and deadlocked on 11 more, including the key racketeering count against the alleged mob boss.
January 26, 2014 |
For the first time in 13 years, George Borgesi, the Philadelphia mob's former consigliere, left the James A. Byrne federal courthouse Friday unencumbered by handcuffs and hand in hand with the woman he married while behind bars. Borgesi had been found not guilty. Hours earlier, a jury acquitted the 50-year-old known as "Georgie Boy" on one count of racketeering conspiracy and said it was hopelessly deadlocked on three of four counts facing his uncle and codefendant, reputed mob boss Joseph Ligambi.
April 30, 2014 |
HIS NICKNAME is "Bent Finger Lou. " Philly mobsters call him "Rat Finger Lou" and other unprintable variations. Jurors didn't believe him. One called him a "slimeball. " But if you were in court yesterday, you might have thought that Louis Monacello Jr. and his bent index finger had been canonized over the weekend alongside former popes John Paul II and John XXIII. Monacello, 47, a mob turncoat who once split a guy's head open with a baseball bat and offered cash to have a rival mobster beaten to a pulp, was set free with no additional jail time on racketeering conspiracy and loan-sharking charges.
November 22, 2013 |
PHILADELPHIA It was the evidence that Joseph Ligambi's lawyers didn't want a jury to hear. But in a one-two punch Wednesday, federal prosecutors laid out two of the most contentious elements of their racketeering case against the reputed head of the Philadelphia mob. First, Joaquin Garcia, a former undercover FBI agent who once infiltrated New York's Gambino crime family, regaled jurors with tales of Mafia rituals, violence, and the gangsters with...
September 17, 2012 |
PHILLY WISEGUY Gaeton Lucibello was sentenced to 51 months in federal prison Friday for his role in a racketeering and extortion scheme with the local La Cosa Nostra. Lucibello, 59, pleaded guilty in August and admitted assisting in shaking down a bookie for "street tax" payments and operating two illegal video-poker machines as part of a racketeering conspiracy. He was one of the 14 Philly mob members and associates charged with racketeering conspiracy, extortion, loan sharking, illegal gambling, witness tampering and theft in a 52-count indictment.
November 27, 2013 |
GEORGE BORGESI'S defense boils down to a simple question: If he's been imprisoned and under constant surveillance for the past 13 years, how could the onetime Philly mob consigliere simultaneously be involved in a long-running racketeering conspiracy, as prosecutors claim? The government's star witness, mob turncoat Louis "Bent Finger Lou" Monacello, claims to have the answer. He attempted yesterday to explain it to a jury - again - during the retrial of Borgesi and Borgesi's uncle, reputed mob boss Joseph Ligambi.
June 10, 2011 |
ROCCO MANISCALCO had reason to wear a bulletproof vest. Two reasons, actually. The South Philly auto-body-shop owner was a bookie on the side, and he was tangling with a trio of drug dealers who refused to pay on a $60,000 sports bet, according to his family. They were threatening violence if he didn't back off. And the mob was trying to shake him down for "protection money" that he didn't intend to pay, his sister says. For five months beginning in late 2009, Maniscalco, 38, stayed close to his Wolf Street home, donning the bulletproof vest and cloaking himself in hoodies when he ventured out - or sometimes sleeping elsewhere to throw off spies he'd seen watching him. But as the weather warmed, his vigilance waned.
January 29, 2014 |
A Philadelphia judge denied a bail request Monday for reputed mob associate Ronald Galati, who is being held on charges that he ordered the killings of three men. Galati, 63, who worked at a South Philadelphia auto-body shop, has been held without bail since his arrest Dec. 13. He is accused of ordering the murder of a rival auto-body-shop owner and that man's son for allegedly cooperating with authorities investigating possible insurance fraud...