June 17, 2021 – Springfield (MA) mob associate David (Fat Chicky) Cecchetelli came out swinging with what appears to be a very strong legal argument to get a gun and ammunition-possession charge thrown out of court.
Fat Chicky Cecchetelli, a convicted mafia-sponsored bookmaker, was arrested in December 2019 for having a loaded pistol and ammo when the feds raided his residence to take his nephew into custody. His attorney argues they shouldn’t have been looking where they found the incriminating evidence in the first place
Fat Chicky’s nephew and roommate, Michael (King Merlin) Cecchetelli, is the No. 1 defendant in Operation Throne Down, a large-scale takedown of the east coast branch of the Latin Kings gang. The 42-year old King Merlin runs all Latin Kings affairs on the eastern seaboard and pleaded guilty to racketeering charges back in the spring.
On the morning the feds came to arrest King Merlin, they found a gun and ammunition in Fat Chicky’s room and charged him with being a felon in illegal possession of ammunition, but not possession of the weapon itself. He has pleaded not guilty in thecase.
Attorney Daniel Hagan filed a brief on Fat Chicky’s behalf this week challenging the validity of the search because the elder Cecchetelli was not the target of the investigation and had no warrant out for his arrest which, according to Hagan’s pleadings, therefore should bar agents from searching his room minus probable cause (being that him and his nephew lived in “distant and discrete” areas of a multi-family residence they share in the Forest Park section of Springfield). Hagan points out that the FBI agent who filled out the affidavit for the search warrant didn’t even realize who King Merlin actually lived with, referring to the quite well-known David “Fat Chicky” Cecchetelli as “Donald Cecchetelli.”
In the Operation Throne Down indictment, U.S Attorneys point to a connection between the mainly Hispanic Latin Kings group and the Italian mafia in Western Massachusetts. The Italian King Merlin rose to shot caller status in the gang despite not being of Latino heritage, leveraging Latin Kings contacts he met while he served a previous prison bid to propel him up the ranks of the organization.
The feds believe King Merlin built ties to the Italian mafia on the East Coast through his uncle Fat Chicky and recorded at least two meetings at Springfield’s Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Society Social Club, the Genovese clan’s nerve center in Western Massachusetts, with Latin Kings leadership discussing criminal business. Fat Chicky pleaded guilty to charges of bookmaking on behalf of the Genovese crime family in 2005 and did a little less than a year in federal prison.
Springfield has long been Genovese territory and a hotbed of rackets in the New England underworld. Over the past decade, Chicky has reinvented himself as an on-line personality and says he’s retired from his life of crime.
During the 1990s and 2000s, Chicky Cecchetelli worked in the sports gambling trade for Springfield mob skippers Frank (Frankie Skyball) Scibelli, Adolfo (Big Al) Bruno and Anthony (Bingy) Arillotta. Frankie Skyball died of natural causes in 2000. Bruno was gunned down in the parking lot of the Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Society Social Club in November 2003 on orders given by Arillotta and Genovese brass in New York. Arillotta, 51, became a witness against the Genovese bosses responsible for green-lighting his power play in the years that followed.