November 24, 2020 – The house of cards that is the Philadelphia mafia had its shaky foundation hit with a sledgehammer Monday morning with the indictment of 15 leaders, members and associates of the Bruno-Scarfo crime family on federal drug, gambling and extortion charges. Alleged Philly mob underboss Steven (Handsome Stevie) Mazzone and rising-star capo Domenic (Baby Dom) Grande were the top two gangland figures named in the case.

Federal prosecutors are seeking to keep Mazzone and Grande locked up until trial, requesting any bails requests by the case’s No. 1 and No. 2 defendants be rejected. They face 20-year sentences if convicted and are scheduled to be arraigned Friday. Both Mazzone and Grande are confidants of Philly mafia boss Joseph (Skinny Joey) Merlino, who relocated to South Florida in 2011 and runs the crime family from afar, according to the feds.

Mazzone, 56 and always dapper and tan in appearance, did almost a decade behind bars on a 2001 racketeering conviction and has been part of the Philly mob’s administration since the 1990s. He’s best friends with Merlino, also convicted in the 2001 case.

Handsome Stevie’s younger brother, Salvatore (Sonny) Mazzone, was busted last Thursday morning on bookmaking charges. Sonny Mazzone, 55, is said to be a mafia soldier and also close to the swaggering Skinny Joey. Monday’s indictment was superseding to that case and others dating back to early last year. Neither Mazzone brothers were charged with narcotics trafficking.

The icy-cool, newly-married 41-year old Grande is Mazzone’s nephew by way of marriage and reportedly being mentored by Mazzone and Merlino to one day take over their regime as don. His father, Salvatore (John Wayne) Grande, was a hit man and drug dealer in the Philly mob currently living in the Witness Protection Program.

Others to go down in Monday’s case include, Joseph (Joey Electric) Servidio, Lou (Louie Sheep) Barretta, Victor (Big Vic) DeLuca, Daniel (Cozzy) Castelli, Daniel (Danny Blue Eyes) Malatesta, Sr., Anthony (Tony Meatballs) Gifoli, Kenny Arabia, Carl Chianese, John Romeo, Danny Bucceroni, Joe Malone and John Payne.

Malone is Handsome Stevie’s former father-in-law. He is alleged to have ordered a baseball bat beating of a debtor, per the indictment.

“Louie Sheep” Barretta, 56, is one of Mazzone’s longtime aides. Barretta was nabbed in a 2011 racketeering indictment and did prison time. “Big Vic” DeLuca’s dad, Victor DeLuca, Sr. was a turncoat mobster in the 1980s.

Malatesta, Sr., Castelli, Chianese and Bucceroni were nailed in a cocaine conspiracy earlier this month. Malastesta’s son is a Mazzone and Merlino associate and Castelli’s daughter is married to a prominent South Philly bookmaker and adviser to Merlino.

The 60-year old “Joey Electric” Servidio pleaded guilty to drug charges in the summer and got 15 years. He is a mob soldier in the Bruno-Scarfo crime family’s North Jersey wing.

The superseding indictment filed Monday references an October 15, 2015 “making ceremony” or mafia induction ritual taking place in a South Philly private residence and presided over, at least partially, by Stevie Mazzone. According to the indictment, some of the new initiates were placed in Dom Grande’s crew and immediately instructed to push into Atlantic City in a series of rackets on behalf of the Pennsylvania crime syndicate. Grande was allegedly tasked with “reclaiming” territory in Atlantic City.

Skinny Joey Merlino, 58, is on parole down in Boca Raton stemming from a minor gambling conviction. Merlino assumed power in the Philly mob in the mid 1990s after winning a bloody turf war and surviving several assassination attempts. During those tumultuous times, Mazzone became Skinny Joey’s right-hand man and primary emissary to the street and other crime chiefs.

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