November 11, 2012 |
Louis "Bent-Finger Lou" Monacello said he never killed anyone. He stole cars, supervised gambling operations, collected debts and "tax" payments that reputed Philadelphia mob boss Joseph Ligambi allegedly demanded from other criminals. Occasionally, Monacello told jurors Friday, he smashed windows, slashed tires, even cracked heads. Once, on orders from above, Monacello staked out a South Philadelphia rival's house for three months before finally catching the man as he left to walk his dog one night, he said.
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.
February 26, 2013 |
A North Jersey mobster, who admitted to participating in the affairs of Philadelphia's La Cosa Nostra, was sentenced today to a 55 month term in federal prison. Louis "Big Lou" Fazzini, 45, pleaded guilty in October to a racketeering conspiracy charge linked to a mob-controlled gambling and loan-sharking operation. A self-described "made" member of the mob, Fazzini, of Caldwell, operated a sports bookmaking business and ran a social club in northern New Jersey where illegal gambling on card and dice games occurred regularly.
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.
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.
October 6, 2012 |
This story has been updated to reflect that Fazzini has pleaded guilty. Louis "Big Lou" Fazzini, a North Jersey mobster charged with racketeering, has decided to take his chances with the sentencing judge rather than put his fate in the hands of a federal jury. Fazzini, 45, pleaded guilty Friday morning before U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno in Philadelphia. Fazzini had pleaded not guilty this year to a racketeering conspiracy charge linked to a mob-controlled gambling and loan-sharking operation.
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...
May 30, 2014 |
A Philadelphia mob soldier convicted this year of running an illegal gambling business that funneled proceeds to La Cosa Nostra was sentenced Wednesday to more than two years in federal prison. Eric Esposito, 43, was sentenced to 27 months, the maximum term suggested under federal sentencing guidelines. Still, the sentence U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno imposed was below the more than three years prosecutors had asked for, saying Esposito had flouted the law. At trial in February, prosecutors alleged Esposito ran the First Ward Republican Club, an after-hours South Philadelphia bar that had little to do with politics but that became a frequent hangout for mobsters and their associates.