Shelved Chicago mobster Michael (Mikey Mags) Magnafichi barely escaped with his life in the 2000s, as he landed on the losing end of a deadly feud that raged in the Outfit through the first half of the New Millennium’s first decade and he lost the support of his Goodfella benefactors because of personal debt, exclusive Gangster Report sources reveal. Mikey Mags, sometimes referred to “Good Looking Mike,” did an interview with the Chicago Sun-Times last week as part of the paper’s “Faces of Faith” podcast series focusing on his relationship with Catholicism (read here).

Per Chicago Crime Commission records, the 55-year old Magnafichi, once described as a rising star in Windy City mob circles, was groomed in the Outfit by former underboss John (Jackie the Lackey) Cerone and during his mafia heyday, maintained a close relationship with local underworld powers like Joseph (Joe the Builder) Andriacchi, Marco (The Mover) D’Amico, Salvatore (Solly D) DeLaurentis and the DiFronzo brothers. His father is deceased Outfit soldier Lee Magnafichi.

The elder Magnafichi was a one-time confidant of longtime Chicago mob overlord Tony Accardo and died of natural causes in December 1989. Cerone died of heart and liver failure in the summer of 1996.

Good Looking Mike was known as a numbers whiz and sports-gambling specialist and by his late twenties was looking after bookmaking affairs for the entire Elmwood Park crew, acting as a de-facto street boss for D’Amico and the DiFronzos, according to CCC memos. He attended Northern Illinois University on a golf scholarship. Not viewed as a tough guy in the mob world, he did have his name appear on a list compiled by the FBI in 2002 of those made members of the Chicago mafia they viewed as a threat to notorious Southside crew hit man-turned star informant Nick (Nicky Slim) Calabrese.

Mike Magnafichi

The start of Magnafichi’s problems in the Outfit can be traced back to a beef between Cicero crew leaders Michael (Fat Mike) Sarno and Anthony (Little Tony) Zizzo in the early 2000s sources say. Sarno was the Chicago mob acting boss from 2005 until his imprisonment in late 2010. Zizzo was the Outfit’s acting underboss from 2003 until his disappearance in August 2006.

The bad blood between Sarno and Zizzo began with a fight over video poker distribution routes. Zizzo’s main muscle, Anthony (Tony the Hatchet) Chiaramonti, was gunned down in the vestibule of a suburban Chicago fast-food fried chicken joint on November 22, 2001.

Chiaramonti and Magnafichi were in a number of Outfit-backed businesses together, say sources, and Tony the Hatchet’s siphoning of funds from these businesses landed in Mikey Mags’ lap when Tony the Hatchet ended up dead on an early Thanksgiving evening 16 years ago. Magnafichi was said to have stood behind Zizzo in Little Tony’s square-off with Fat Mike Sarno.

Zizzo vanished en route to a Rush Street sit down with Sarno, set to be mediated by current Outfit elder statesman Joe Andriacchi, on the afternoon of August 31, 2006 – Joe the Builder headquarters his activities out of several posh Rush Street restaurants and bars. At that same time, Magnafichi’s personal finances were in a bit of a mess and he had taken out a series of street loans, per sources, that he increasingly irritated Andriacchi and the DiFronzo brothers by failing to make good on.

“That whole situation almost got out of hand, h pissed a lot of people off….Sarno didn’t like him and then he isolated himself from his Rabbis (Andriacchi & the DiFronzos),” said one retired law enforcement source with knowledge of wiretaps discussing Mikey Mags’ thin standing in certain Windy City street factions. “He fell from grace fast in that orbit. Within a few years, he went from a player to on the sidelines.”

John (Johnny No Nose) DiFronzo replaced Tony Accardo as the Outfit’s ultimate shot-caller when Accardo died of natural causes in 1992. Peter (Greedy Petey) DiFronzo is a veteran Elmwood Park captain and reportedly held Outfit acting boss duties for a couple years earlier this decade buffering the reigns of Sarno and Solly DeLaurentis. Andriacchi and Marco D’Amico are alleged to be Solly D and the aging DiFronzo’s top advisors, per CCC memos.

According to sources, at some point in the late 2000s, Magnafichi was “voluntarily” put on the shelf “in fear for his life.” He still lives in the greater Chicagoland area and has mostly been able to stay off the radar sans a 2013 arrest for the illegal discharge of a firearm by a felon.

*Magnafichi opened up about his thoughts on his Outfit days with blogger and Chicago mob expert Joe Fosco in 2011 (read here).

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