New York mobster and Bonanno crime family captain Vinnie Asaro was sentenced to eight years in prison this past week for arson. Asaro, 82, beat charges two years ago for his alleged participation in the infamous Lufthansa Heist depicted in the classic 1990 film Goodfellas. In the late 1970s, high-ranking Lucchese crime family associate James (Jimmy the Gent) Burke orchestrated the record-breaking $6,000,000 robbery of the Lufthansa terminal at JFK Airport. Oscar-winning actor Robert DeNiro played Burke in Goodfellas.

Below is a breakdown of the follow-up murders Burke ordered to cover his tracks. Nobody has ever been convicted for the heist and Asaro was the first person ever arrested for the crime back in 2014. According to prosecutors at his 2015 trial, Asaro acted as the Bonanno clan’s representative on the daring early-morning hours of December 11, 1978. Burke died in prison in 1996.

The Lufthansa Heist Hit List (1978-1984)

December 18, 1978 – Burke crew member and aspiring African-American blues musician Parnell (Stacks) Edwards is killed in his apartment a week following the Lufthansa heist after botching his role in the job and not properly disposing of the getaway vehicle. Edwards, an expert in credit card fraud, got the Hollywood treatment in Goodfellas and was played by Samuel L. Jackson.

December 30, 1978 –  Burke crew member and Jimmy the Gent protégé Thomas (Two GunTommy) DeSimone disappears on his way to what he thought was a mafia induction ceremony but is murdered instead. DeSimone had been one of the stick up men in the heist and was most likely the triggerman in the Stacks Edwards homicide. He had angered mob powers in the Gambino crime family with the unsanctioned murders of William (Billy Bats) Bentvena and Ron (Foxy) Jerothe years earlier. The hit on “Billy Bats” was depicted in Goodfellas, with Joe Pesce playing Two Gun Tommy and character actor Frank Vincent portraying Bentvena.

January 6, 1979 – Burke crew member, male wig shop owner-hair salon proprietor and Jewish mob associate Marty (The Rug) Krugman is killed after being too demanding for his cut of the proceeds from the heist. It was the loud and brash Krugman’s tip about the lax security and his inside access at JFK’s Lufthansa cargo terminal that jumpstarted the conspiracy to rob the airport. Krugman was played by actor Chuck Low in Goodfellas and the movie showed him being murdered.

Jan 17, 1979 – Burke crew associate and con man Richie Eaton is slain and left hanging on a hook in a meat locker after trying to scam Jimmy the Gent out of $250,000 of the heist proceeds Burke had trusted him with laundering in Florida. Eaton’s murder itself wasn’t shown in Goodfellas, but his discovery in the meat locker was.

Feb 10, 1979 – Tommy DeSimone’s girlfriend Theresa Ferrara, who worked with Richie Eaton in Ft. Lauderdale and suspected of both being an FBI informant and helping Eaton skim off the top of the laundered heist cash, is murdered. Her body is never found.

March 8, 1979 – Burke crew member Louis (Louie Roast Beef) Cafora and his wife Joanna disappear and are murdered for Louie Roast Beef’s careless behavior in the direct aftermath of the heist. Cafora was Jimmy the Gent’s cellmate during a prison stint and one of the stick up men in the job. Like you saw in Goodfellas, days following boosting the Lufthansa terminal, Louie Roast Beef (called “Johnny Roast Beef” in the film) bought a brand new pink-colored Cadillac Fleetwood and was going around town showing it off, raising eyebrows from law enforcement and drawing Burke’s ire.

March 22, 1979 – Burke associate and Florida bar owner Tommy Monteleone is killed for being suspected of being in on the plan by Richie Eaton and Theresa Ferrara to steal money given to them by Jimmy the Gent, specifically earmarked to be washed through his Player’s Lounge nightclub in Ft. Lauderdale as well as a bogus drug deal the team of grifters came up with in an unsuccessful attempt to throw Burke off the scent of their intention to rip him off.

May 16, 1979 – Burke crew members and JFK Airport “inside men” Joseph (Joe Buddha) Manri & Robert (Frenchy) McMahon are murdered side-by-side execution style in a car found in a New York parking garage. Both Manri and McMahon worked at the airport in the Air France terminal.

June 13, 1979 – Gambino crime family Lufthansa Airport lieutenant Paolo LiCastri is slain, set on fire and thrown in a trash dump in a further attempt by Burke to eliminate any links between him and the heist.

July 18, 1984 – Burke crew member Angelo Sepe & his girlfriend Joanna Lombardo are killed in Sepe’s apartment after Sepe angered Lucchese crime family administrators by his brazen robbery of mob-backed drug dealers. Sepe was one of the stick up men in the heist and had been on the frontlines of Burke’s wipeout of his co-conspirators in the Lufthansa job.

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