Detroit Gangland Digest: Convictions, Arrests & Objections

His surroundings won’t be new. Cliff Jones, one of the most notorious underworld figures in Detroit history, will spend be spending the next five years in prison, after pleading guilty to drug conspiracy charges in federal court in Mississippi late last month, just three years removed from being released from almost two decades behind bars on a narcotics-trafficking conviction. Jones, 56, was arrested in a DEA sting operation in a Gulfport, Mississippi casino parking lot back in the winter, alongside his son and namesake, Cliff Jones, Jr. and another Detroiter named Michael A. Williams, trying to purchase five kilos of heroin.

The father-and-son Jones tandem and Williams were each indicted in March, charged with running drugs from Mississippi to Michigan for 18 months, buying the entirety of their product inventory from an undercover DEA agent. Jones, Sr. was introduced to the undercover officer posing as a drug dealer by a confidential federal informant he was incarcerated with.

Williams and the younger Jones pled guilty back in the summer and each received three-and-a-half year prison sentences. The elder Jones had relocated to Los Angeles in the wake of his release from prison on his last drug case in the summer 2012.

An alleged hit man and freelance enforcer in the Motor City narcotics game of the 1970s and 80s, Jones rose to kingpin status in the 1990s, taking over the large wholesale cocaine-distribution organization once led by Demetrius Holloway, Detroit’s preeminent crack-era drug lord who was slain in 1990 at a popular downtown men’s clothier. Jones headed the former Holloway syndicate until he was jailed in 1993. Although never convicted of a homicide, authorities tap him as a suspect in literally dozens of gangland slayings over the years.

No LCN connections in last month’s Windsor hit gone awry, shooter in unsuccessful Canadian murder attempt named, collared

Police in Windsor, Ontario (Canada) recently arrested Alekesji Guzhavin with the daring early- September shooting on the outskirts of the border town’s Little Italy neighborhood, targeting a rival and caught on tape by a nearby witness in a trailing car who narrowly avoided being injured in the attack himself. A reputed gangland figure and drug dealer in London, Ontario, (the city located in between Detroit, Michigan and Toronto), Guzhavin, 30, and an associate of his allegedly drove up to a rival of theirs’ in a black-colored Jaguar at a stoplight at the intersection of Howard and Erie and opened fire.

Ultimately, nobody was struck in the attack and the Jaguar sped away with the assailants in pursuit in a green Toyota. A bullet from the gun that was fired into the Jaguar ricocheted off the windshield and flew into a Nissan driving behind it, lodging in the front-seat cushion, avoiding hitting the driver, who taped the incident.

Windsor is less than 10 minutes from Detroit, a stone’s throw across the United States-Canada border. Guzhavin, convicted of weapons offenses two years ago, is currently charged with attempted murder and is not believed tied to any Italian organized crime factions in Canada or the U.S. The green Toyota authorities think Guzhavin was traveling in the front passenger’s seat in during the assault was recovered within days and he was identified and brought into custody by the end of the month.

The city of Detroit has traditionally controlled all mob activity in Windsor, dating back to the days of Prohibition. Since the 1980s, Anthony (Tony Pal) Palazzolo, the reputed consigliere of the Detroit mafia today, has been alleged to oversee mob affairs in the region.

Alleged Detroit mob associate’s classification causes quite the debate on streets of the Motor City

Some sources objected to Gangster Report’s categorization of young, ambitious Michigan Mafiosi Peter (Pete Gotti) Tocco as an “up-and-comer” being “groomed” by syndicate administrators in the Detroit mob last month in an article recapping the 39-year old’s wedding. Tocco is said to be a recent addition to the shrinking inner-circle of reputed Motor City Godfather Jack (Jackie the Kid) Giacalone, acting as Jackie the Kid’s driver and bodyguard over the past year or so.

Since his reported promotion to the boss’ chair in early 2014, Giacalone has allegedly “closed ranks” in regards to those he interacts with on a regular basis, per sources familiar with his daily routine. Giacalone, 65, and his reputed street boss, Peter (Petey Specs) Tocco, – 69 years old and no relation to “Gotti,” – were both in attendance at Gotti’s wedding in September. Gotti Tocco and Giacalone live near each other in Detroit’s Jewish and Arab-concentrated Westside suburbs, opposed to the historically Italian-based Eastside, where they grew up.

“Gotti is a wannabe, he isn’t a future player,” said one source. “He’s being shaken down by Jackie and he doesn’t even know it, he’s paying for his company. Jackie sees him as a mark. The Kid is a world-class shakedown artist, he’s deep in Gotti’s pockets. That’s what that sudden friendship is all about, nothing else.”

Although a convicted felon and racketeer, Giacalone hasn’t been to prison in two decades and is alleged to have assumed command of the legendarily-stable and stealthy Detroit mob from a dying Giacomo (Black Jack) Tocco roughly a year and a half ago, months before the long-reigning Tocco died in July 2014. Black Jack Tocco, the syndicate’s undisputed leader for almost 40 years, was Specs Tocco’s uncle, but no relation to Gotti Tocco, who is the son of another alleged local wiseguy named Salvatore (Mops) Tocco. Specs Tocco is sometimes called “Blackie” or “PT” and took a RICO pinch in 2006, doing two years of prison time, in the same case Giacalone was indicted in and acquitted of by a jury at trial.

Per FBI records and court filings from the 1990s, Mops Tocco used to run with the old Lucido crew. No longer active, the Lucido crew used to be a big gambling regiment in the Detroit mafia, first led by Salvatore (Sammy Lou) Lucido (d. nat causes 1985), then his son, Jack (Fat Jackie) Lucido, out of the east-suburban Wolverine Golf Club. When Fat Jackie Lucido died in 1995 of cancer, the crew disbanded.

Giacalone’s dad was Vito (Billy Jack) Giacalone, the renowned crime family capo and underboss, and his uncle was Anthony (Tony Jack) Giacalone, the nationally-respected and feared street boss of the Detroit “LCN” faction from 1960 until his death of kidney failure in 2001. Billy Giacalone passed away in 2012

 

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