Doesn’t “The Sopranos” sound like something from TV? “The Godafather”? Well, guess again. Today the US Attorney’s office rounded up 10 frightening sounding members of the Mafia for a massive indictment. They include the acting boss of the Bonnano family (still in business in 2018) and nine other mobsters, all charged with racketeering and “related offenses.”
This is REAL. This is NOT a Martin Scorsese movie set in the distant past. Gangsters with nicknames– Joe Valet, Porky, Mr. C., Grumpy, Al Muscles, Joey Blue Eyes, Butch, Boobsie. All of them including– no nickname, he’s 85 years old — a Dominick Miniero– are all “presumed innocent” until their trials. And listen, then there’s no guarantee they’ll be convicted.
The Mafia is still going strong, a hundred years later. Unbelievable.
from the release:
The indictment charges eight members of the Bonanno Family – Acting Boss JOSEPH CAMMARANO, JR., Consigliere JOHN ZANCOCCHIO, JOSEPH SABELLA, GEORGE TROPIANO, ALBERT ARMETTA, DOMENICK MINIERO, JOSEPH SANTAPAOLO, and SIMONE ESPOSITO – with racketeering conspiracy involving a wide range of crimes, including extortion, loansharking, wire and mail fraud, narcotics distribution, and conspiracy to commit murder.
Genovese Family member ERNEST MONTEVECCHI is charged with participating in that conspiracy as well. Several of the defendants and Luchese Family member EUGENE CASTELLE are charged with conspiracy to commit extortion. ARMETTA is additionally charged with assault resulting in serious bodily injury in aid of racketeering, and aiding and abetting the same.
You realize it’s 2018, right? (And all we really want to know is: what’s their favorite Italian restaurant, and can we get in?)
The release continues:
La Cosa Nostra (“LCN”), also known as the “Mob” or the “Mafia,” operates through entities known as “Families.” In the New York City area, there are five LCN Families, namely, the Bonanno Family, the Genovese Family, the Luchese Family, the Colombo Family, and the Gambino Family. Members and associates of one La Cosa Nostra family at times work together with other La Cosa Nostra families in jointly undertaken criminal ventures.
The Bonanno Family, like other LCN Families, operates through a group of individuals known as “crews,” each of which are led by a “capo” or “captain.” The crews are composed of “made” members, called “soldiers,” and trusted non-members called “associates.” Above the Capos are the highest-ranking members – the Boss or Acting Boss, the Underboss, and the Consigliere, or counselor – who oversee the Family.
At times relevant to the Indictment, the defendants held the following positions with their respective LCN Families: CAMMARANO was a captain and the Acting Boss of the Bonanno Family; ZANCOCCHIO was a captain and the Consigliere of the Bonanno Family; SABELLA was a captain of the Bonanno Family; TROPIANO was a soldier and an acting captain of the Bonanno Family; ESPOSITO was the Consigliere of the Bonanno Family; MINIERO, SANTAPAOLO, and ARMETTA were soldiers in the Bonanno Family; MONTEVECCHI was a soldier in the Genovese Family; and CASTELLE was a soldier in the Luchese Family.
Count One of the Indictment charges CAMMARANO, ZANCOCCHIO, SABELLA, TROPIANO, ARMETTA, MINIERO, SANTAPAOLO, ESPOSITO, and MONTEVECCHI with participating in a racketeering conspiracy. Count Two charges ARMETTA with assault resulting in serious bodily injury in aid of racketeering, and aiding and abetting the same. Count Three charges CAMMARANO, ZANCOCCHIO, SABELLA, TROPIANO, MINIERO, and CASTELLE with extortion conspiracy.
The case is being prosecuted by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jason M. Swergold and Jessica Greenwood are in charge of the prosecution.