Posts byScott Burnstein

Mafia Hit List: The Top 5 NYC “Westies” Irish Mob Murders

Led by the violent and ambitious Jimmy Coonan, The Westies was New York’s Irish mob of the late 1970s and 1980s. Backed by the Italian Gambino crime family, the Westies turned Hell’s Kitchen upside down, flooding the streets with massive amounts of narcotics, murder and mayhem. While latter-era Irish crime lords from Hell’s Kitchen like
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Hamilton (Ont.) Wiseguy Tony Musitano Dies At 72, Did Time For Arson, Extortion, ’83 Toronto Mob Hit

The “Bombing Baker,” Tony Musitano passed away peacefully in Ontario, Canada this week at 72 with little fireworks or fanfare. The Hamilton mafia figure served seven years in prison (1983-1990) for staging a bombing campaign in an effort to extort a string of bakeries and playing a role from behind bars in the murder conspiracy
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Mob Gunner “Jonny the Kid” Mignacca Out Of Halfway House, Back To Unstable Montreal Underworld

Montreal mobster Jonathan (Jonny the Kid) Mignacca was granted a full parole last week from a stint in prison for reckless discharge of a firearm. The 34-year old Mignacca, once the driver and bodyguard for renegade Canadian mafia leader Raynald Desjardins, served three and a half years behind bars before being sent to a halfway
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Mafia Hit List: The Top 15 Connecticut Mob Murders Of All-Time

The state of Connecticut has always been open mob territory, “no man’s land,” meaning it doesn’t belong to one single crime family. Several different mafia syndicates from all along the East Coast have had a presence in the state for decades, including the Genovese (NY), the Colombos (NY), the Gambinos (NY), the DeCalvacantes (NJ) and
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Gangster Disciples Chieftain “Big 38” Crumpton Gets Hit Hard, Near Three-Decade Stay In Prison On Horizon

Derrick (Big 38) Crumpton, the former boss of the Gangster Disciples in Tennessee, was slapped with a 27-year federal prison sentence for narcotics trafficking and racketeering last week in Memphis. If he had been convicted, he could have gotten life. The case was known as “Operation 38 Special.” When Crumpton was arrested three years ago,
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San Francisco’s Pied Piper Of Pimping, Ron Newt, Gone At 69, Bragged Of Inspiring Empire TV Show

The man claiming to be the inspiration for the hit television show Empire died of natural causes in California last month. Ron Newt, a flamboyant pimp turned aspiring music impresario, passed away at 69 on March 11. Running a gang and a prostitution ring out of San Francisco in the 1970s and 80s, Newt eventually
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No California Love: West Coast Hip Hop Murder Timeline (1993-2019)

The senseless murder of on-the-rise L.A. rap star Nipsey Hussle this week tragically places the beloved, Grammy-nominated MC on a growing list of California hip hop artists who have died in gangland-style slayings. There have been five murders of West Coast rappers in the past four years. Below is a breakdown of every Cali killing
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The Hip-Hop Murders Hit List (1987-2019): Nipsey Hussle’s Slaying Continues Disturbing Trend

West coast rap star Ermias (Nipsey Hussle) Asghedom was killed over the weekend in a shooting outside his South Central L.A. men’s clothier shop, Marathon Clothing. Sadly, the Grammy-nominated Nipsey Hussle, allegedly gang affiliated with the Rollin 60 Crips, is just the most recent in a long line of murders tied to the billion-dollar hip-hop
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More Bloodshed In Montreal Mob War, As Pair Of Underworld Figures Pop Up Dead

The Montreal mob war has left two more bodies in its wake. Canadian mafia associates Mike Di Battista and Mario Simeone were both gunned down last week. Di Battista was found shot to death behind the wheel of his car in the Dominican Republic Monday. Simeone, a licensed real estate agent, was killed in the
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Big Trouble In The Big Easy: The Hankton Boys Gang Hit List (2006-2016)

The Hankton Boys Gang was formed in New Orleans in the 1990s by cousins George (Cup) Hankton and “Wild Telly” Hankton and went on to become the biggest, baddest, most bloodthirsty drug-trafficking organization in Big Easy history, making millions and partying with local rap music luminaries like Lil’ Wayne and Master P while ruling the
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Providence Mafia Figure Heads To The Can To Cool His Heels For A Bit

New England wiseguy and repeat felon Richie Tiberi reported to state prison last week to serve a two-year sentence for selling stolen property out of his longtime headquarters, the Decatur Social Club in Providence’s Federal Hill neighborhood. The 76-year old Rhode Island mobster, who has a myriad of convictions for gambling offenses, prescription drug sales
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To Kill A Don: The American Mob Boss Hit List (1931-2019)

Shockwaves coursed through the streets of New York last week when the news broke of Gambino crime family underboss and street boss Frank (Frankie Boy) Cali being shot to death outside his Staten Island home. The shooter, 24-year old Anthony Comello, has no known mob ties and appears mentally unstable. Comello had allegedly been warned
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Home Cooking: Conn. Mobster, Gardner Museum Robbery Suspect “Bobby The Cook” Gentile Gets Out Of Prison

East coast mafia figure Robert (Bobby the Cook) Gentile was released from federal prison over the weekend after serving just more than a year on weapons charges. The infirmed 82-year old Gentile was born in Boston and lived in Connecticut, but was a member of Philadelphia’s Bruno-Scarfo crime family. The FBI believes Bobby the Cook
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Royal Farewell Planned For “Taco” Bowman, Historic Outlaws Pres. Will Be Laid To Rest In Front Of Thousands

Venerable American biker boss Harry (Taco) Bowman is having a sendoff fit for a king. The beloved 69-year old Bowman, who served as the international president of The Outlaws Motorcycle Club at the end of the 20th Century, his dynamic leadership propelling the club to epic heights, died last week in prison of cancer. He’ll
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In NYC Mob Boss Carmine Persico’s Death, We Remember His Battle To Maintain Power Through His Incarceration

The nation’s longest-serving mafia don, Carmine (Junior) Persico of New York’s Colombo crime family, died in prison this week at 85 years old. Persico led the Colombo mob for almost a half-century, taking the reins in the early 1970s and heading the family from behind bars since the mid-1980s. Following his incarceration, he was forced
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After Living Quietly Away From The Mob For Decades, Fmr. Cleveland Mafia Associate Fritz Graewe Dies At 66

Retired Cleveland mobster Frederick (Fritz) Graewe died of natural causes last week, having been on the sidelines of underworld activity since his release from prison in the early 1990s. The German-born Graewe, who had links to both Italian and Irish mafia powers of the past, was 66 years old and survived the Cleveland mob war
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The Ultimate Outlaw: Iconic Biker Boss Taco Bowman Dies At 69, Took Outlaws MC To Next Level

Midwest biker baron Harry (Taco) Bowman died behind bars of cancer over the weekend at 69. The legendary Outlaws Motorcycle Club President ran his biker empire from Detroit and brought the Outlaws to prominence nationwide, presenting a formidable challenger to Hells Angels founder Ralph (Sonny) Barger as America’s most powerful biker boss at the apex
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A Ray Of Light For Rayful: Legendary Washington D.C. Drug Boss Dapped By Feds, Could Be Free Soon

The quintessential D.C. drug don, Rayful Edmond, might receive a reprieve from his life prison sentence, his reward for cooperating with authorities for the last two decades. Prosecutors in Washington D.C.’s U.S. Attorneys’ Office filed motions in federal court last week for Edmond’s sentence to be reduced and him to be paroled. The 54-year old
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The Pajama Party Is Over: Fmr. Philly Mob Capo “Al Pajamas” Taps Out, Dies In Prison At 89

One-time Philadelphia mafia captain Vincent (Al Pajamas) Pagano died of natural causes this week after spending the last quarter century of his life behind bars. The 89-year old had been locked up since 1994. He was found guilty at a 1995 federal racketeering trial alongside Bruno-Scarfo crime family boss John Stanfa. Al Pajamas was a
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The Scarfo-Riccobene War Timeline: Philly Mob Blood Feud Brewed In Early Years Of Little Nicky’s Reign

After taking power in 1981, bloodthirsty Philadelphia mafia boss Nicodemo (Little Nicky) Scarfo went to war with the rogue Riccobene crew, led by pint-sized Philly mob figure Harry (The Hunchback) Riccobene, a veteran of the city’s rackets dating back to his teen years during Prohibition. Riccobene refused to recognize or pay tribute to Scarfo and
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Another Three Bite The Dust: More Mob Murders In Canada Add To Ever-Growing Hit Parade

For the past decade, a mob war in Montreal has engulfed the Canadian underworld. The rampant violence is continuing into 2019, as there have been a trio of gangland related slayings in recent weeks tied to the conflict. In Quebec, Montreal mob figure and construction mogul Tony Magi along with drug boss Ray Khano were
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The Domino Effect: Last Bobby I Bust In Pittsburgh Started From The Bottom Up

A low-level gambler from Uniontown, Pennsylvania gave up Pittsburgh mobster Robert (Bobby I) Iannelli and his multi-million dollar bookmaking and numbers business to the state police 30 years ago, resulting in the legendary Iannelli’s last criminal conviction. The next one could be coming soon. The esteemed 88-year old Steel Town gambling chief, for decades the
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Florida Pagan’s Pick Up Plea Deals In Fed Drug Case, Biker Boss “Sledgehammer” Burt Bound For Decade In The Can

A pair of Pagan’s Motorcycle Club leaders pleaded guilty to federal narcotics conspiracy charges this week stemming from a crystal-meth ring being run out of Central Florida. The August 2018 bust included more than a dozen members of the club’s Daytona Beach chapter, headlined by chapter brass Brian (Sledgehammer) Burt and Michael (Clutch) Andrews. Burt
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Studio 54 & The Mafia: Club Owner’s Dad Was Major Player In Brooklyn Mob Rackets

The FBI investigated world-famous Studio 54 for mob ties due to the historic nightclub’s founder Ian Schrager having a father who was a powerful New York mob figure. Louis (Max the Jew) Schrager was a gambling boss in Brooklyn linked to legendary Jewish wiseguy Meyer Lansky. Studio 54 was the epicenter of New York City
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Rochester Mafia Murder Timeline: New Info On Cold-Case Hit Sheds Light On Boss’ Slaying

Last week, a voice from the grave went on-record about a cold-case mob hit from upstate New York when The Democrat & Republic newspaper printed excerpts from a 2009 video-taped interview with retired Rochester mob consigliere Rene (The Painter) Piccarreto about what happened to Jake Russo, the city’s mafia don in the early 1960s who
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Who Is Bobby Iannelli?: Pittsburgh Mob Power Goes Under The Microscope Amid Another Gambling Pinch

As big as a player as there has been in the world of gambling on the east coast of the United States the past 40 years, aging Pittsburgh mobster Robert (Bobby I) Iannelli is smoking it to the filter. The seasoned 88-year old Steel Town gambling-boss titan was indicted this week on charges of overseeing
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The “I” Of The Storm: Steel Town Mobster “Bobby I” Busted For Sports Book

Old-school Pittsburgh mob figure Robert (Bobby I) Iannelli, 88, was indicted this week in state court on charges of running a large sports bookmaking operation and numbers business out of Allegheny and Westmoreland Counties. Iannelli’s son, Rodney (aka “Rusty”) was also nailed in the case. The indictment named 13 co-defendants and was jumpstarted by a
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Stevie Andretta Remains Alive Despite Reports To The Contrary, Hoffa Case Still Has Suspects Alive

Rumors of New Jersey mobster Stevie Andretta’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. Long believed dead, Andretta, one of the suspects in the disappearance and murder of iconic labor union leader Jimmy Hoffa, was revealed to still be alive by the preeminent Hoffa case-expert Dan Moldea in recent weeks on a Fox News broadcast segment focusing
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Providence Mobster Little Eddie Lato Let Out Of The Joint, For How Long Remains To Be Seen

With a murder probe hanging over his head, New England mafia captain Edward (Little Eddie) Lato was released from prison this week and into a halfway house in his home state of Rhode Island. Award-winning investigative television reporter Tim White at WPRI broke the news of Lato’s move from a federal penitentiary in New Jersey
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Sources: Narducci’s Actions Sent Debtor Darting To Team America In Latest Philly Mafia Saga

According to sources in law enforcement, Philadelphia mob skipper Phil Narducci did himself in back in the fall when he allegedly laid his hands on a man who he had loaned money to. That man, who Uncle Sam was already eying in another investigation, went scurrying to the feds, per the source, and wired up
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Hoffa Murder Suspect Tommy Andretta Dead, N.J. Mafia Figure May Have Been Last Link To Iconic Mystery

For the second time in less than a month, one of the final suspected direct links to the storied Jimmy Hoffa kidnapping and murder has died. Long-retired New Jersey mobster Tommy Andretta passed away this week in Nevada. The “Godfather” of Hoffa case research and reporting, award-winning journalist Dan Moldea broke the news of Andretta’s
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New BMF Book Hits The Market, “Sosa” From The D Drops Knowledge On Crew’s Early Days

Original Black Mafia Family member Dexter (Sosa) Hussey did his time for his crime and now he has a story to tell. The 53-year old Hussey, a native of Detroit and four years removed from a prison stint stemming from his involvement in the historic Operation Motor City Mafia case, has released a memoir focusing
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El Chapo & Montreal’s Rizzuto Crime Family: “Tony Suzuki” Bought His Drugs Directly From Mexican Crime Baron

The Montreal mafia was dealing directly with the world’s biggest drug boss, Mexican crime mogul Joaquin (El Chapo) Guzman, during the height of Guzman’s monolithic reign atop the global narcotics game. Rizzuto crime family drug lieutenant Antonio (Tony Suzuki) Pietrantonio had his name surface in testimony at Guzman’s highly-publicized federal trial in New York this
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How Jack Tocco & His Detroit Mob Family Took The Edgewater Casino For A Cool 10 Million

When it came to infiltrating the Nevada gaming industry, no American Italian mob was more resilient or resourceful than Detroit’s Tocco-Zerilli crime family. Over a three-decade period, the Detroit mafia was busted for maintaining hidden ownership in and skimming millions of dollars from three separate glitzy Nevada hotel and casinos. The Las Vegas Strip was
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Grand Ave. Mobster Makes Quite A Deal For Himself In Chicago Mafia Case

Chicago mob soldier Robert (Bobby Pinocchio) Panozzo pleaded guilty in his state racketeering case last week and with time served could hit the Windy City streets again in less than five years. The 59-year old Panozzo has been jailed since a Chicago Police Department sting caught him robbing a drug house in the summer of
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Detroit Mafia’s Consigliere Tony Pal, Possible Final Tie To Hoffa Mystery, Passes Away At 78

The Butterfly flies no more. Detroit mobster Anthony (Tony Pal) Palazzolo died of natural causes recently, possibly eliminating the last living link to the famed Jimmy Hoffa disappearance and murder four and a half decades ago. Some people called him the “The Butterfly” for his elusive nature on the streets. Palazzolo, 78, was the longtime
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The Montreal Mob War Murder Timeline: Rizzuto Crime Family Remains At War Into 2019

For the past decade, a mob war in Montreal has engulfed the Canadian underworld. In the late 2000s, Montreal Godfather Vito Rizzuto’s family mafia dynasty came under attack from within when Rizzuto’s right-hand man Raynald Desjardins joined forces with deported New York don Salvatore (Sal the Ironworker) Montagna to challenge Rizzuto’s reign while the mob
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Quebec Mobster Made It Out Of Prison For The Holidays, Returns To Mafia Crew Decimated By War

Montreal mob figure Alessandro (Allie Boy) Sucapane was released to a halfway house in the weeks before Christmas after almost eight years in prison on racketeering and drug-trafficking charges stemming from the high-profile Project Clemenza case. Sucapane, 53, was part of the insurrection in the Rizzuto crime family that began in the late 2000s and
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Boston Mafia Figure Nino Bufalino Back On The Outside, Released From State Lock-Up After 7 Years

New England mob soldier Darin (Nino) Bufalino recently walked free from a state prison sentence in Massachusetts for armed robbery and extortion. The 57-year old wiseguy was groomed in the mafia by former Patriarca crime family don Francis (Cadillac Frank) Salemme, the New England region’s Godfather in the early 1990s who was convicted in a
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The Philadelphia Junior Black Mafia Murder List: Aaron Jones & JBM Killed The Comp In Late ’80s

Aaron (A.J.) Jones founded the Philadelphia Junior Black Mafia in 1985. As a young boy in the 1970s, Jones had been an errand boy for original Philly Black Mafia chief Robert (Nudie) Mims. The “JBM” went on to dominate the crack cocaine trade in North and West Philadelphia for the better part of a decade.
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NY & Philly Mob Bosses Held Sit Down To Resolve Dispute Between Phil Narducci And Cherry Hill Gambinos

The second time historic east coast mafia dons John Gotti and Nicodemo (Little Nicky) Scarfo met face to face it was to settle a beef between soldiers in their respective crime families, according to New Jersey state records. One of those soldiers was current Philadelphia restauranteur and reputed mob heavy Phil Narducci. Gotti and Scarfo
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Lufthansa Heist Hits 40-Year Anniversary: A “Goodfellas” Murder Timeline

This month is the 40th anniversary of the infamous Lufthansa Airport Terminal Heist in New York City, which along with its bloody fallout was depicted in gritty detail in the Oscar-nominated film and mob flick classic Goodfellas. The robbery was the biggest in U.S. history, netting a Luchese crime family crew led by notorious high-end
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Hey, Joe, Welcome Back, Boss: Buffalo Mobster Big Joe Todaro Might Not Be Retired After All

According to court documents in a drug-trafficking case out of Canada, Joseph (Big Joe) Todaro, Jr. replaced Leonard (Lennie Calzones) Falzone as boss of the Buffalo mob two years ago upon Falzone’s death of natural causes. The Western New York crime family’s underboss Dom Violi, 52, was sentenced to eight years in prison by a
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The Quebec Biker War Timeline: Murder & Mayhem In Montreal In Fight For Biker Kingdom

The Quebec Biker War ripped through Canada in the 1990s and early 2000s, claiming more than 100 bodies when the Hells Angels MC and the Rock Machine MC clashed in a battle for drug, gambling, prostitution and extortion turf in Montreal and beyond. The Hells Angels, the gold-standard for biker crews in America, landed in Montreal in 1977.
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Getting Juiced In: The Detroit Mob’s Giacalone Brothers Burned On Fed Wire In Their HQ Back In 1960s

The Giacalone brothers (“Tony Jack” & “Billy Jack”) were the Detroit mafia’s street bosses in the second half of the 20th Century, the proverbial “faces of the franchise” for the mob in Motown from the 1950s into the 2000s. Below are snippets of FBI wire transcripts from the bug at their Home Juice Company headquarters
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Billy Wadd’s Revenge: Devils Diciples’ Detroit Empire Fell Apart When MC Turned On Boss With Conscience

The Devils Diciples biker gang in Detroit was done in a decade before the indictment hit. As soon as the club’s Westside Detroit chapter boss William (Billy Wadd) Smith flipped in early 2003, the highest level of the Devils Diciples were on borrowed time. Billy Wadd joined Team America after learning “DD” national president and Michigan
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A Marching Saint: Dickey Moltisanti Role Cast In Sopranos Movie, Nivola Receives Nod

Actor Allesandro Nivola, best known for co-starring in Face-Off with Nicolas Cage and American Hustle with Christian Bale and Jennifer Lawrence, will play Dickey Moltisanti in The Sopranos movie being produced jointly by Warner Brothers and New Line Cinema. Moltisanti was never seen on screen, only referenced in the landmark HBO drama which ran from 1999 to 2007
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