A former FBI agent who spent years pursuing New York’s mafia said modern mobs are struggling with poor management and flaky new hires who are not used to the cutthroat world glamorized by The Godfather and Goodfellas.
The newer generation of mobsters who were raised in the suburbs is accused by its elders of being too soft, stupid, and obsessed with phones, according to a Wall Street Journal interview with Scott Curtis.
One associate for the Colombo crime family, for example, is accused of sending threatening text messages to a union official being extorted.
Ten members of NYC crime family arrested including 87-year-old boss
Members of a New York City crime family threatened violence, pressured workers and pocketed phony “pension” payments in a two-decade plot to seize control of a city construction union and its lucrative employee health insurance program, prosecutors alleged in an indictment unsealed on Tuesday.
Ten members of the Colombo crime family, including 87-year-old boss Andrew “Mush” Russo, were charged in connection with the scheme, which prosecutors said had all the major trappings of Mafia-type shakedowns seen in TV shows like “The Sopranos” and movies.
Prosecutors said crime family members pressured the union to steer health plan business to pals, sought at least $10,000 (£7,200) per month in kickbacks and threatened to kill a union official if he didn’t comply, telling an associate on a recorded telephone call in June: “I’ll put him in the ground right in front of his wife and kids.”
The Italian mafia has hundreds of members in Germany pulling strings in the international drug trade. The latest major trial shows how lengthy legal procedures and lenient verdicts are no match for organized crime.
Fourteen defendants face an array of charges in court in the western German city of Düsseldorf, and the main ones pertain to the trafficking and sale of cocaine. Well over half a ton of cocaine: 680 kilograms (1,499 pounds) all told, being sold at prices of up to €36,000 (roughly $43,000) per kilo.
Five are suspected members of the Calabrian ‘Ndrangheta syndicate and all 14 reside in Germany’s most populous state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW). Their passports reveal NRW’s ‘Ndrangheta as an international employer: Italian, German, Dutch, Turkish, Moroccan, Portuguese. Translators from Italy, the Netherlands, and Turkey are on hand in court.
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A Miami federal judge has denied an early release from prison for one of the kingpins of the Cali drug cartel, ruling that his health and the threat of the COVID-19 coronavirus are not sufficient grounds to end his incarceration. The decision from U.S. District Judge Federico Moreno means that Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela, an 81-year-old former leader of the Cali cartel, will continue to serve his 30-year sentence at a federal penitentiary in North Carolina.
Rodriguez Orejuela and his brother Miguel, former leaders of the infamous Cali drug cartel, pleaded guilty in 2006 to trafficking more than 200 tons of cocaine from Colombia to the United States during the 1980s and ‘90s. The brothers reached a plea deal with federal prosecutors in Miami that allowed dozens of family members to avoid prosecution for money laundering and obstruction of justice charges as part of the agreement.
Rodriquez Orejuela’s attorney had filed a petition with the court requesting early release for his client on compassionate grounds. Attorney David O. Markus argued that Rodriquez Orejuela’s medical history, which includes colon cancer, prostate cancer, two heart attacks, high blood pressure, skin cancer, gout, chronic anxiety and depression, qualified him for compassionate release. Markus also cited media accounts of the threat that the COVID-19 poses to prison inmates as cause to let him out of prison.
“Because there were already sufficient reasons to release him, this crisis gives the court further reasons to grant his motion,” he said.
Francesco Bonura, an influential boss in the Sicilian Cosa Nostra; Vincenzo Iannazzo, a member of the Ndrangheta; and Pasquale Zagaria, a member of the Casalesi clan, have now been moved to house arrest, according to Federico Cafiero De Raho, Italy’s anti-mafia prosecutor.
To prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus within correctional facilities, the Italian government authorized magistrates to transfer inmates who have 18 months or less in their sentences to house arrest.
Cafiero De Raho said the three men had been held under “extra isolation measures” to avoid contact with people outside the prison because of the roles they had in mafia organizations.
“Once they are sent back home, these measures are obviously no longer enforced,” the prosecutor added.