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Lucchese crime family
TommyLucheseNYPD.jpg
Named after Gaetano Lucchese
In United States New York City
Founded by Gaetano "Tommy" Reina
Years active 1920s-present
Territory Various neighborhoods in New York City and New Jersey
Ethnicity Italian, Italian-American made men and other ethnicities as "associates"
Membership 115-140 made members,[1] 1,100+ associates
Criminal activities Racketeering, Assault, Bookmaking, Burglary, Cargo theft, conspiracy, Contract killing, counterfeiting, Cigarette smuggling, Credit card fraud, drug trafficking, extortion, fencing, fraud, illegal gambling, hijacking, Labour Racketeering, Point shaving, loansharking, money laundering, murder and Robbery
Allies Gambino, Bonanno, Colombo, and Genovese Crime Families
Rivals Various gangs in New York City and their allies

The Lucchese crime family is one of the "Five Families" that controls organized crime activities in New York City, U.S., within the nationwide criminal phenomenon known as the Mafia (or Cosa Nostra).[2] Originally put together by Gaetano "Tommy" Reina in the early 1920s up until his murder in 1930., their illicit activities include profiting from labor and construction racketeering, illegal gambling, loansharking, extortion, drug trafficking, money laundering, hijacking, fraud, fencing and murder for hire.[3] The family was taken over by Gaetano "Tommy" Gagliano during the Castellammarese War until his death in 1951. The family under Gagliano was peaceful and low key concentrating there criminal actives in the Bronx, Manhattan and New Jersey. The next boss was Gaetano "Tommy Brown" Lucchese he turned the family around and became one of the most powerful Commission members. Lucchese would team up with Gambino family boss Carlo Gambino and control organized crime in New York City together. When Lucchese died of natural causes in 1967, Carmine Tramunti would control the family for a brief time he was arrested in 1973. With the release from prison Lucchese’s successor Anthony "Tony Ducks" Corallo gained control of the family. Corallo was very secretive and soon became one of the most powerful members of the Commission. Corallo was arrested and tried in the famous Commission case of 1986.

Corallo decided to put Vittorio "Vic" Amuso and Anthony Casso in charge of the family. Casso was soon promoted to underboss and the family would barely survive the reign. Casso fearing arrest in the early 1990s kept ordering those he felt unloyal to be murdered. The former street boss for Casso Alphonse "Little Al" D'Arco feared for his own life and turned informant. This led to the arrest of the entire Lucchese family hierarchy and Casso was finally caught. He quickly turned informant, trying to save his own life. The family lost power, respect and honor in the underworld. The family is still controlled by Amuso who is serving life and today is controlled by a three man panel of capos.

Contents

History

The Reina Gang

The Lucchese family started out around World War I as a criminal gang in the Bronx under Gaetano "Tom" Reina, who controlled ice distribution in New York.[4] During the 1920s, Reina became an ally of Joseph Masseria, the most powerful Italian-American crime boss in New York. Masseria soon became involved in the Castellammarese War, a vicious gang war with rival Sicilian boss Salvatore Maranzano. At this point, Masseria started demanding a share of Reina's criminal profits, prompting Reina to consider changing allegiance to Maranzano. However, Masseria learned of Reina's possible betrayal and plotted with Reina lieutenant Gaetano "Tommy" Gagliano to kill him. On February 26, 1930, gunman Vito Genovese murdered Reina outside his aunt's apartment.[5] With Reina dead, Messeria bypassed Gagliano and installed his underling Joseph "Fat Joe" Pinzolo as head of the Reina gang. Furious with this betrayal, Gagliano and Gaetano "Tommy" Lucchese defected to Maranzano. In September 1930, Lucchese lured Pinzolo to a Brooklyn office building, where he was murdered.

The Two Tommies

With Masseria's murder in early 1931, Maranzano took control of all the New York gangs and reorganized them into five criminal families. Gagliano became the boss of the Reina gang, to be later known as the Lucchese family, with Lucchese as his underboss. With the September 1931 murder of Maranzano, Lucky Luciano became the top boss in New York. However, Luciano kept the five families as created by Maranzano. In the ensuing years, Gagliano and Lucchese led their the family into profitable areas of the trucking and clothing industries.[6]

Gaetano "Tommy" Gagliano took control of the old Reina gang and became the fifth boss in New York City. Gagliano took a seat on the Mafia Commission using his trusted friend Lucchese as his underboss and Stefano Ronnelli as his consigliere. When Luciano was sent to prison in 1936, Gagliano had to deal with a with a strong alliance that took control of the Commission. The alliance of Vincent Mangano, Joseph Bonanno, Stefano Magaddino, and Joseph Profaci used their power to control organized crime in America. Gagliano was very careful to never cross the alliance and tried to stay out of the media attention. He was a quiet mafia boss who was rarely seen and used this to his advantage; Gagliano instead spoke to a few close allies. Lucchese was the front man and was seen more in the streets. Lucchese was even present in the Havana Conference in Cuba on behalf of Gagliano in 1946. Gagliano stayed a mysterious mafia boss from 1932 to his death of natural causes in 1951 or 1953, which is still unclear.

Lucchese era

After Gagliano's death in 1953, Gaetano "Tommy Brown" Lucchese, a close Gagliano ally, took over the family. Lucchese appointed Vincenzo Rao, aka (Vincent "Nunzio" Rao) as his Consigliere and Stefano LaSalle as his Underboss. Lucchese carried on the traditions Gagliano had established, making the family, which now bore his name, one of the most profitable in New York. Lucchese further developed the family's interests by controlling Teamsters unions, workers' co-operatives and trade associations, and racketeering at the new Idlewild Airport. He also took the family into new rackets in Manhattan's Garment District and in related trucking industry around New York City. Lucchese built close relations with powerful New York politicians, including Mayors William O'Dwyer and Vincent Impellitteri and members of the judiciary, who aided the family on numerous occasions. Throughout his regime, Lucchese kept a low profile for which he became lauded in Mafia circles. Lucchese spent 44 years in the mafia without receiving a single criminal conviction.[7]

When Lucchese became boss, he helped Vito Genovese and Carlo Gambino in their fights to take control of their families. By 1962, Lucchese and Gambino controlled the Commission. Together they backed the Gallo crew from the Profaci family in its war with their boss Joe Profaci. Gambino and Lucchese saw the war as a way to take over rackets from the distracted Profaci's. Then Lucchese and Gambino teamed up against Joseph Bonanno, using the Commission to strip Bonnano of his role as boss. This power play started another war and the Lucchese and Gambino families grew stronger. Lucchese led a quiet, stable life until his death from a brain tumor on July 13, 1967. Lucchese left his family in a very powerful position in New York City. The Lucchese family had a stronghold in East Harlem, the Bronx and consisted of about 200 made members.[8] After Lucchese's death, the Commission made Carmine Tramunti acting boss until Lucchese chosen successor, Anthony Corallo, was released from prison.

Tramunti and the French Connection

At the time of his appointment as temporary boss, Tramunti was almost 70 years old and in ill health. With boss-in-waiting Anthony "Tony Ducks" Corallo in prison, Tramunti reign was to end upon Corallo's release. Tramunti faced a number of criminal charges during his time as acting boss and was eventually convicted of financing a large heroin smuggling operation, the infamous French Connection. This scheme was responsible for distributing millions of dollars in heroin up and down the East Coast during the early seventies.

After law enforcement busted the French Connection, the seized heroin was stored in the NYPD property/evidence storage room pending trial. In a brazen scheme, hundreds of kilograms of heroin were stolen from the room and replaced with bags of flour. The scope and depth of this scheme is still not known, but officials suspect it involved corrupt NYPD officer/officers who allowed mobsters to steal $70 million in heroin and replace it with white baking flour. Officers discovered the theft when they noticed insects eating the so-called heroin. By that point an estimated street value of approximately worth of Herion had already been taken. Certain plotters received jail sentences, including Papa (he was later assassinated in the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary in Atlanta, Georgia).

In 1974, after Tramunti's incarceration, Corallo finally took charge of the family.[9]

Tony Ducks and the Jaguar

After Tramunti's incarceration in 1974, Anthony "Tony Ducks" Corallo finally took control of the Lucchese family. Corralo came from the Queens faction of the family. Known as "Tony Ducks" from his ease at 'ducking' criminal convictions, Corrallo was a Boss squarely in the Tommy Lucchese mold. Corrallo had been heavily involved in labor racketeering and worked closely with Jimmy Hoffa, the Teamsters president, during the 1940s and 1950s. Corallo also enjoyed close ties to the Painters and Decorators Union', the Conduit Workers Union, and the United Textile Workers. Corrallo appointed Salvatore "Tom Mix" Santoro as the Underboss and supervisor of all labor and construction racketeering operations in New York, and Christopher "Christie Tick" Furnari as the reputed Consigliere. The family prospered under Corallo's leadership, particularly in the narcotics trafficking, labor racketeering, and major illegal gambling operations. As Corallo never discussed business during sit-downs, fearing U.S. government were monitoring the conversations, he discussed business in his bodyguard and chauffeur's Jaguar which had a phone in it, and reportedly drove around New York while on the phone discussing business. Salvatore "Sal" Avellino and Aniello "Neil" Migliore shifted as Corallo's chauffeurs during the 1970s and 1980s.[10][11]

Corallo, a huge fan of the New Jersey faction of the family, reputedly inducted and promoted Anthony "Tumac" Accetturo and Michael "Mad Dog" Taccetta into the organization and put them in charge of the Jersey Crew, which reportedly controlled most of the loansharking and illegal gambling operations in Newark, New Jersey at the time.[12]

In the early 1980s, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) managed to plant a bug in Corallo's car , where he conducted most of his businesses by phone. The FBI recorded Corallo talking at great length about mob affairs, including illegal gambling, labor racketeering, drug trafficking, and murder. Corallo was arrested and put on trial along with all the heads of the Five Families at the time. This trial became legendary as the Mafia Commission Trial. Corallo was convicted on numerous charges and sent to prison, where he died in 2000.

To succeed him as boss, Corallo originally chose acting boss Anthony "Buddy" Luongo. However, Luongo disappeared in 1986. Corallo's ultimate choice was Vittorio "Vic" Amuso[10]. Allegedly both Amuso and Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso were candidates for the job. Evidence suggests that Corallo wanted Casso, but Casso convinced him to select Amuso instead. After becoming boss, Amuso made Casso his adviser, allowing him to exert great influence over family decisions.

The iron fists of Amuso and Casso

During the late 1980s, the Lucchese family underwent a period of great turmoil. In 1986, Vittorio "Vic" Amuso and his fierce underboss, Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso, seized control of the Lucchese family and instituted a powerful and notorious regime. Both men were heavily involved in labor racketeering, extortion, drug trafficking and committed many murders. Amuso and Casso were strong rivals of Gambino crime family boss John Gotti and strong allies of Genovese crime family boss Vincent "Chin" Gigante. Angry over Gotti's unauthorized murder of Gambino boss Paul Castellano, Amuso, Casso, and Gigante conspired to murder Gotti. On April 13, 1986 a car-bombing killed Gambino underboss Frank DeCicco, but missed Gotti. This assassination attempt sparked a long and confusing 'tension' between these three crime families with many deaths reported on all sides. [13][14]

During the late 1980s, Amuso began demanding 50% of the profits generated by the Jersey Crew. New Jersey leaders Anthony Accetturo and Michael Taccetta refused Amuso's demand. In retaliation, Amuso ordered his men to "Whack Jersey", meaning eliminate the entire New Jersey faction, and summoned them to a meeting in Brooklyn, New York. Fearful for their lives, none of the New Jersey mobsters attended the meeting.

Taccetta and Accetturo were later put on trial in 1990, as both Amuso and Casso were implicated in a case involving the fitting of thousands of windows in New York at over-inflated prices, and the pair went into hiding of that same year, ruling the family from afar and ordering the execution of anyone they deemed troublesome, either they were considered rivals or potential informants.[13][15]

What followed next was a series of botched hits, which led some members of the family turning informants to save their own lives. The planned executions went as high as Alphonse "Little Al" D'Arco, the acting boss while Amuso was in hiding, who had little choice but to turn himself over to the authorities to spare him and his family from Amuso and Casso and their increasingly erratic demands. Amuso also ordered the slaying of captain Peter "Fat Pete" Chiodo, who along with Casso was in charge of the Windows Case operation, but as he was shot 12 times and survived, he also turned state's evidence and provided the entire windows operation that eventually controlled $150 million in window replacements, sold in New York City. As Amuso also sanctioned the hit on Anthony Accetturo, who was on trial in 1990, he also cooperated with the government.[16][17]

On July 29, 1991, the FBI captured Amuso in Pennsylvania, and two years later Casso was caught in Greenwood, NY. Amuso had resisted all attempts by the police to turn on the mob, but Casso wasted little time in doing so. The FBI soon learned from Casso that for years he had paid off two New York Police Department detectives, Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa, to leak him information on informants and even perform contract hits. That allegiance produced one of two particularly despicable moments in mob history: the Christmas Day 1986 murder of an innocent Brooklyn man who had the same name as a suspected informant.[18] The second low point came in 1992 when Lucchese hit men tried to kill the sister of a suspected turncoat, violating the alleged Mafia “rule” barring violence against family members.[19] Unfortunately for Casso, his testimony proved so inconsistent that he was ultimately accused of having gone back on his deal to help the authorities and refused leniency in sentencing for his various crimes.

Amuso was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1991, as well as Casso in 1994, who had been a fugitive for over four years, and reportedly conspired with reputed Consigliere Frank Lastorino and Brooklyn faction leaders George Zappola, George Conte, Frank "Bones" Papagni and Frank Gioia, Jr. into murdering Steven "Wonderboy" Crea, Amuso's acting underboss of the Bronx, as well as Gambino crime family acting boss John "Junior" Gotti, son of the imprisoned John Gotti, along with members of the Genovese crime family once again. But due to massive indictments, none of the plots were committed.[14][20][21]

Acting bosses

After Amuso went to prison, Joseph "Little Joe" DeFede was chosen as the acting boss. However, throughout the mid 1990s Amuso continued to control the family from prison. DeFede, who supervised the powerful Garment District racket, reportedly earned more than $40,000 to $60,000 a month. DeFede placed Steven Crea, a powerful Bronx faction leader, in charge of the family's labor and construction racketeering operations. Crea increased the Lucchese family earnings from these rackets between $300,000 and $500,000 every year. But as US law enforcement kept pressuring the organized crime activities in New York, DeFede was arrested and indicted on nine counts of racketeering in 1998. DeFede pled guilty to the charges and was sentenced to five years in prison. Angry at DeFede's guilty plea, Amuso promoted Crea as the new acting boss.[22]

Crea's success with the labor and construction rackets convinced Amuso that DeFede had been previously skimming off these profits. In late 1999, Amuso placed a contract' on DeFede's life. On September 6, 2000, Crea and seven other Lucchese members were arrested and jailed on extortion charges, mostly to the supervising of the construction sites with various capos Dominic "Crazy Dom" Truscello and Joseph "Joey Flowers" Tangorra. Crea was convicted in 2001 and sentenced to five years in prison.[23][24]

After Crea's conviction in 2001, the fierce Consigliere of Queens, Louis "Lou Bagels" Daidone, a prominent Lucchese family member since the 1980s, took control of the family. However, Daidone's tenure was short lived. After his release from the prison, the scared DeFede became a government witness and helped the government convict Daidone of murder and conspiracy. Daidone's conviction was also helped by the testimony from Alphonse D'Arco in September 2004.[22]

Mafia cops

In April 2006, it was revealed that two respected New York City police detectives worked as hitmen and informants for Casso during the 1980s and early 1990s before their retirement. They were Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa, who spent much of their combined 44 years with the NYPD committing murders and leaking confidential information to the Lucchese family. Between 1986 and 1990, Eppolito and Caracappa participated in eight murders and received $375,000 from Casso in bribes and payments for murder 'contracts'. Casso used Caracappa and Eppolito to pressure the Gambino crime family by murdering several of their members. This is because Casso, along with the imprisoned Amuso and Genovese crime family boss Vincent Gigante, wanted their rival John Gotti out of the way. Caracappa and Eppolito are now seen as the main source of 'tension' between these three families during the late 1980s and early 1990s.[23]

For one contract, Eppolito and Caracappa kidnapped mobster James Hydell, forced him into their car trunk, and delivered him to Casso for torture and murder. Hydell's body was never found. The two detectives also shot Bruno Facciolo, who was found in Brooklyn in the trunk of a car with a canary in his mouth. After pulling Gambino crime family captain Edward "Eddie" Lino for a routine traffic check, the detectives murdered him on the expressway in his Mercedes-Benz. In 2006, Eppolito and Caracappa were convicted of murdering Hydell, Nicholas Guido, John "Otto" Heidel, John Doe, Anthony DiLapi, Facciolo, Lino, and Bartholomew Boriello on the orders of Casso and the Lucchese family. They were sentenced to life imprisonment.[24][25]

Current position and leadership

Victor Amuso remains the official Boss of the Lucchese crime family despite serving a life sentence. It is unclear how much influence he has over the family from his prison cell. In the last few years, a three man ruling panel, Joseph "Joey Dee" DiNapoli, Aniello "Neil" Migliore, and Matthew Madonna has been running the family. All three are long time capos in the family, but Migliore is believed to have the final say on things. Migliore has been a major player in the family for more than 30 years and is said to have huge respect on the street. In 2006, former acting boss Steven Crea was released from jail after serving five years in prison.[26] Still it remains to be seen what role Crea will play for the Lucchese crime family since his parole restrictions expired in 2009.

In the last few years, after suffering greatly from turncoats, federal prosecution, and internal conflicts due to bad leadership, the Lucchese family has avoided further dramatic federal indictments. The only major conviction as of early 2009 was against the Jersey Crew leader Martin Taccetta, who in July 2009 was sentenced to life in prison of racketeering chargers he was acquitted of five years ago.[27] Consigliere Joseph Caridi was released from prison on November 28, 2009 after serving almost 6 years in prison for extortion and loansharking. Arguably, recognized Underboss Migliore has managed to bring some stability to the Lucchese family.

A March 2009 article in the New York Post identified Vittorio Amuso as the current imprisoned boss, with Aniello Migliore, Joseph DiNapoli, and Matthew Madonna serving on a ruling panel, which maintains the family for the imprisoned Amuso. The article also states that the Lucchese family consists of approximately 100 "made" members,[28] possibly making it the smallest of the Five Families, although not the weakest. It is probably the third most powerful, as the Bonanno family has had to deal with their Boss turning government informant and their next Boss being deported to Canada. While the Colombo family have been damaged ever since the family wars of the 1990s and the multiple indictments relating to it in the 2000s.[29]

2009 indictments

On October 1, 2009 29 mobsters and associates of the Lucchese family were indicted in two separate bribery and racketeering schemes.[30][31] Prosecutors said acting Lucchese capo Anthony Croce and mobsters Joseph DiNapoli and Matthew Madonna were key players in an operation that pulled in approximately $400 million from gambling, loansharking, gun trafficking and extortion. The ring passed around more than $120,000 in construction bribes, prosecutors said, adding that investigators tapped 64 telephones and bugged a restaurant in a two-year probe with the N.Y.P.D. and the Department of Investigation.[30] Other associates were charged with taking cash to void violations, lift stop-work orders and speed up inspections at more than a dozen sites across the city and extorted bribes from contractors and building owners, dealt drugs and trafficked in firearms according to prosecutors.[30]

In a separate indictment, the FBI charged 12 more reputed Lucchese mobsters in a gambling, loansharking and extortion scheme. Prosecutors said the ring paid $222,000 in bribes to an N.Y.P.D. detective and sergeant posing as crooked cops to protect city poker parlors.[30] Acting Lucchese capo Andrew DiSimone and crime family soldier Dominic Capelli ran the ring, said the N.Y.P.D. vice division, who headed up the sting, dubbed Operation Open House.

On November 18, 2009 the NYPD arrested 22 members and associates of the Lucchese and Gambino crime families.[32] The raid was a result of cases involving loan sharking and sports gambling on Staten Island. There are also charges of bribing New York City court officers and bribing Sanitation Department officials. The Operation Pure Luck investigated Gambino's family loansharking and bookmaking activities on Staten Island.[33] Gambino family capo Carmine Sciandra, soldier Michael Murdocco, associates Vinnie LaFace and Benedetto Casale were arrested. In Operation Night Gallery investigated loansharking and bookmaking of the Lucchese family in Staten Island. Lucchese family capo Anthony Croce, soldier Joseph Datello and (Joseph brother) Frank Datello along with others.[34] [35]

Historical leadership of the Lucchese crime family

Bosses (official and acting)

Boss- Don/Godfather The Don is the head of the family, no one can call the shots over his decisions. He is also only one of two people (the second man is the Underboss) who can initiate someone into the family, allowing them to become a made man. Since his rank gives him the authority to give the oath to new members and make them sgarrista (soldiers). He also has the authority to give people their positions and ranks. As the Boss of the family he usually reigns as a dictator. The Acting Boss is responsible for running the crime family while the Boss is incarcerated or unable to run the family because of a sickness. If the boss dies he can become the new boss or be stepped over and lose his position as Acting Boss. The early history of the family can be traced to members of the Morello’s gang members in East Harlem and Bronx. Gaetano Reina would leave the Morello gang during the 1920s family war and create his own family based in Bronx and East Harlem.[36] [37]

  • 1920–1930– Gaetano "Tommy" Reina (Murdered February 26, 1930 during the Castellammarese War by the Masseria faction. Some believe his murder sparked the shooting war between the Masseria and Maranzano factions, others believe the war truly started with the murders of Castellammarese Clan leaders in Detroit and Chicago the following May and October.)
  • 1930– Bonaventura "Joseph/Fat Joe" Pinzolo (Murdered September 5, 1930 by the Gagliano/Lucchese faction of the Reina crime family.)
  • 1931–1953 — Gaetano "Tommy" Gagliano (allegedly semi-retired due to ill health in 1951, died February 16, 1953. Another account states that he died in 1951.)
  • 1953–1967 — Gaetano "Tommy Brown" Lucchese (by 1966, was incapacitated and semi-retired, died of brain tumor on July 13, 1967.)
    • Acting 1966-1967 - Carmine Tramunti (Became commission substituto and interim boss for a year when Lucchese was unable to continue as an active leader and temporarily stepped down..)
    • Acting 1967- Ettore "Eddie" Coco (Luchese's second choice as successor, but was imprisoned in 1967 for murder charges and forced to step down.)
  • 1967–1973 — Carmine "Mr. Gribbs" Tramunti (Due to Coco's imprisonment Tramunti again became acting leader until Corallo was released from prison. Tramunti was imprisoned in October 1973 and died there October 15, 1978.)
  • 1973–1986 — Anthony "Tony Ducks" Corallo (Luchese's first choice for successor, but at the time of Luchese's death Corallo was on trial, soon convicted in 1968 and sentenced to two years in prison. Indicted in the famous commission case on February 15, 1985, convicted on November 19, 1986 and on January 13, 1987 he was sentenced to 100 years in prison, died in prison August 23, 2000.)
    • Acting 1986-- Anthony "Buddy" Luongo (he was named Coralla's successor soon after the verdicts of the commission case were rendered in late 1986, but sometime in December 1986 Luongo a Bronx faction leader was murdered by the Brooklyn faction leaders Vittorio Amuso and Tony Casso.)
  • 1987–present — Vittorio "Vic" Amuso (former Brooklyn faction leader and consigliere Chris Furnari convinced Corallo to make Furnari's protégés Amuso and Casso the new bosses in early 1987. Former Bronx faction leader and underboss Tom Santoro advised against it, knowing the succession of Amuso and Casso would be the biggest mistake in the crime family's history.)
    • Acting 1990–1991-- Alphonse "Little Al" D'Arco (a capo promoted to Street Boss from May 1990 to January 1991 by Amuso, then to Acting Boss January 1991 September 1991, he was then demoted by Amuso, but held a position within the crime family's ruling panel/committee until he became a government witness on September 21, 1991.)
    • Acting 1991–1993—was a four-man ruling panel (four capos with Consigliere) Salvatore "Sal" Avellino, Anthony "Bowat" Baratta, Steven "Wonderboy" Crea (becomes Underboss in 1993), Domenico "Danny" Cutaia, and consigliere, Frank "Big Frank" Lastorino
    • Acting 1993–1998 -- Joseph "Little Joe" DeFede (a caporegime and close associate to who was promoted by Amuso and was eventually jailed in 1998. DeFede became a government witness soon after his release from prison in early 2002, fearing that Amuso had sanctioned his murder.)
    • Acting 1999–2001 -- Steven "Wonderboy" Crea (the official underboss who was promoted by Amuso and eventually indicted and jailed on September 6, 2000 on extortion charges. Crea was eventually convicted in 2001 and sentenced to five years in prison.)
    • Acting 2001–2003 -- Louis "Louie Bagels" Daidone (one of the last violent supporters of Amuso, he was arrested in March 2003 and sentenced to life in prison January 2004)
    • Acting 2003–present Ruling Committee/Panel Aniello "Neil" Migliore, Joseph "Joey Dee" DiNapoli, Matthew Madonna (consisting of three capos acting as street Bosses; it was decided that the three-man ruling panel would substituted for the official underboss position until a new acting boss was chosen. In August 24, 2006 Steven "Wonderboy" Crea was released from prison and would be chosen as acting boss again. But due to his strict parole restrictions the ruling panel continued to run the family. It was then chosen in 2008 that Aniello "Neil" Migliore would be promoted to official underboss. Migliore is the most powerful member of the three man panel and has the final say in all decision.)[38][39]

Underboss

The underboss is the number two position in the family (after Don, Godfather, Boss). Also known as the "capo bastone" in some criminal organizations, this individual is responsible for ensuring that profits from criminal enterprises flow up to the boss and generally oversees the selection of the caporegime and soldier(s) to carry out murders and other criminal activities. The underboss takes control of the crime family after the boss's death. He keeps this power until there is a new boss chosen to run the crime family which in some cases was the Underboss.

Consigliere

The Consigliere is also known as an advisor or "right-hand man". A consigliere is a counselor to the boss of a crime family. The consigliere is second to the boss in the power structure, but does not have underbosses, capos, or soldiers working for him. There is usually only one consigliere per crime family.

Capo of the Jersey Faction

A leading Capo in the faction is chosen as Boss to rule over the other Capos this rank has little power in New York as he is still only seen as a Capo.[40] The Lucchese family’s Jersey Faction consists of 3-4 crews that are operating in Newark, New Jersey's Down Neck section and North Jersey Counties of Essex, Union, Morris, Monmouth, Bergen, Passaic and Sussex.[41] In the 1970s rackets were setup in Florida and in the 1980s rackets were setup in South Jersey and Philadelphia.

  • 1920s-1930 - Gaetano "Tom" Reina (controlled the New Jersey Faction from his Bronx base; involved in transporting bootleg alcohol and Whisky into NYC; murdered on February 26th 1930 during the Castellammarese War by the Masseria faction.)
  • 1930-1953 - Gaetano "Tommy" Lucchese (Underboss he over saw the faction actives and operations he received profits from the faction; Lucchese was promoted to Boss of the family in 1953 and moved to Long Island)
  • 1940s-1955 - Settimo "Big Sam" Accardi (became the leading member of the New Jersey faction operating from his Newark Crew; promoted to Boss/Capo of the entire New Jersey faction after Lucchese became the Boss in 1953; Accardi worked with rival Elizabeth, NJ family boss Sefano Badami; in 1953 his citizenship was revoked; arrested on narcotics charges in 1955 and fled the country)[40]
  • 1955-1960s - Anthony "Ham" Delasco (became the Boss/Capo of the Jersey Faction; Anthony Accetturo became his driver and protégé shaking down bookies and loan-sharks for Delasco; he died sometime in 1960s)[40]
  • 1960s-1979 - Joseph Abate (became the Boss/Capo of the Jersey Faction; took over the Newark crew after the death of Delasco; semi-retired in 1979 leaving Accetturo in charge of the Crew; died naturally in 1994, age 92)[42][43][44]
  • 1970s-1988 - Anthony "Tumac" Accetturo (allegedly in charge of a crew in his early 20s, while working with Anthony Delasco as his driver and protégé; continued to work for the Jersey faction under Joseph Abate he was finally inducted by 1976; took over as Acting Boss in 1979; relocated to Florida during the late 1970s early 1980s and setup rackets; acquitted in the 21 month trail along with other Jersey faction members on August 26th 1988; in 1987 was stripped of Capo his rank demoted to a soldier; tension between Accetturo and Taccetta almost started a war; was threatened to be murdered in 1993 Accetturo defected and became an informant)[45][46][47][48]
    • Acting 1980s-1988 - Michael "Mad Dog" Taccetta (Michael had his own hierarchy with Michael Perna as Underboss and his brother Martin Taccetta as Consigliere they controlled the entire Jersey Crew of the Lucchese family)
  • 1988-present - Michael "Mad Dog" Taccetta (served as the acting leader for Accetturo; acquitted in the 21 month trail along with other Jersey faction members on August 26th 1988 and became the official leader of the Jersey faction late 1988; almost started a war with Accetturo; Michael setup some rackets in Philadelphia in the early 1990s; in 1993 was convicted to life in prison along with his brother Martin and Michael Perna with help from testimony of Thomas Ricciardi and Anthony Accetturo; Michael stayed the official leader of Jersey Faction).[49] [50][51]
    • Acting 2005-2009 - Martin "Marty" Taccetta (released from prison in 2005 due to lack of evidence in his 1993 trail; took over again with help from Ralph Perna; On July 30th 2009 the New Jersey Supreme Court reversed lower court decision that granted him his release and reinstated his life sentence for racketeering and extortion)[52]
    • Acting 2009-present - Ralph Vito Perna (the 63 year was released from prison in 2006; is serving as Acting Boss/Capo on behalf of Michael Taccetta)[53][54]

Current family members

Current administration

  • Boss Vittorio "Vic" Amuso - boss since the 1987 conviction of Anthony Corallo. One of the most feared mobsters from the old Brooklyn faction of the family. Jailed in 1992, Amuso is currently serving a life sentence [55]
  • Acting boss Steven "Wonderboy" Crea - acting Boss since 2006 after his release from prison. Crea, a Bronx faction leader and longtime construction racketeer, is a longtime Amuso ally. Currently running the day-to-day activities of the family. Along with the Ruling Panel consisting of Aniello "Neil" Migliore (the current underboss), Joseph DiNapoli and Matthew Madonna.
  • Underboss Aniello "Neil" Migliore - current underboss and member of the Ruling Panel along with Joseph DiNapoli and Matthew Madonna. Migliore is a longtime Bronx faction leader and former Amuso rival; he was shot and wounded in 1992 on Amuso's orders.
  • Consigliere Joseph "Joe C." Caridi - operates out of the Long Island and Queens factions in extortion and labor racketeering. A former Amuso ally, Caridi was imprisoned on extortion and loansharking charges. Released from prison on November 27, 2009.[56]

Capos

New York

Capo (Crew boss/captain/lieutenant/caporegime): a capo is appointed by the family boss to run his own borgata (regime, or crew) of sgarrista (soldiers). Each capo reports directly to the underboss, who gives the capo permission to perform criminal activities. If the family needs to murder someone, the underboss normally asks a capo to carry out the order. The capo runs the head of day-to-day operations of his crew. The capo's soldiers give part of their earnings to the capo, and the capo gives a share to the underboss. A capo can recommend to the underboss or boss that a recruit be allowed to join his crew as a mob associate.

Bronx

  • Steven "Wonderboy" Crea - Capo, although promoted to acting boss in 2006 after his release from prison. A Bronx faction leader and longtime construction racketeer. Currently running the day-to-day family activities.
  • Aniello "Neil" Migliore - Capo, longtime Bronx faction leader, and former rival of Amuso, he was shot in 1992 on orders from Amuso. Currently acting as unofficial underboss for the family. Migliore's crew operates in the Bronx, Manhattan, Long Island and Florida. [57][58]
  • Matthew "Matt" Madonna - Capo and Amuso rival who operates out of the Bronx faction. Sat on the family Ruling Panel with Migliore and DiNapoli as street boss.[38]

Bronx & Manhattan

  • John "Hooks" Capra - Capo who operated under the Bronx and Manhattan factions in extortion and illegal gambling. Convicted of an illegal gambling operation that earned more than $20 million every year with members of the Gambino family. Capra was released from federal prison on September 10, 2008.[59]
  • Andrew DiSimone – acting capo who was arrested on October 1, 2009 for bribery and illegal gambling operations. DiSimone thought he was paying off corrupt NYPD officers for protection for his loansharking, sports bookmaking and illegal gambling operations around the city. The officers were running a two-year undercover sting under the name Operation Open House and received $222,000 in bribes. DiSimone, along with crime family soldier Dominic Capelli and associate John Alevis, were key figures in the indictment.[60]

Manhattan & Brooklyn

  • Dominic "Crazy Dom" Truscello - Capo with racketeering, extortion and illegal gambling operations under the Bronx and Brooklyn factions. Truscello operated the "Prince Street Crew" and worked in construction racketeering with Steven Crea. Truscello is a longtime Amuso ally.[61][62]

Brooklyn

  • Eugene Castelle - Capo who operates loansharking and numbers rackets in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bath Beach. Castelle also managed a group of narcotics distributors in Brooklyn. He served as acting underboss from 1998-2001 until he was arrested and pleaded guilt to racketeering charges. Castelle was released from federal prison on August 28, 2008.[63]
  • Anthony "Blue Eyes" Santorelli - Capo who operates in Brooklyn. Santorelli was formerly part of The Tanglewood Boys, the recruitment gang for the Lucchese family. [64][65]
  • (Acting) Carlo Profeta - acting Capo for Cutaia Crew. The 68 year-old Profeta was arrested on February 24, 2010 with Lucchese family soldier Salvatore Cutaia, associates Joseph Cutaia and Eric Maione and Bonanno family Capo Anthony Mannone and associate Jerome Carameilli. The men were involved in an illegal gambling and extortion ring.[66][67][68]

Queens & Long Island, NY

  • John "Sideburns" Cerrella - Capo since the 1990s. Formerly a Genovese family associate operating in Broward County, Cerrella later became a made man in the Lucchese family. He is a Long Island faction leader who conducts racketeering, fraud, stocks and wire fraud in Queens and Long Island. The 69 year-old Cerrella was released from prison on November 27, 2009.[69][70][71]
  • Vincent "Vinny Casablanca" Mancione - Capo who operates in Queens and Long Island. Mancione is a close ally of consigliere Joseph Caridi. In December 12, 2002 Macione, Caridi, and capo John Cerrella were arrested for extorting restaurants in Long Island. [72]
  • Salvatore "Sal" Avellino - Capo since the 1980s and longtime Amuso supporter who sat on the family's Ruling Panel in the early 1990s. Currently operates under the Queens and Long Island factions in racketeering and extortion activities. Avellino is also the family's current waste management executive in New York. Avellino is best know for being boss Anthony "Tony Ducks" Corallo’s bodyguard and chauffeur in the 1980s.[73] [74] [75]

Staten Island

  • Anthony Croce - Capo who runs a sports betting ring and loansharking operation on Staten Island. He was an acting capo running a sport gambling racket in Bronx and upper Manhattan until he was arrested in November 2008, along with three associates with 500 grams of cocaine. [76] On October 1, 2009 Croce and 29 other Lucchese Family members were indicted on bribery and racketeering charges. The scheme made around $400 million from gambling, loansharking, gun trafficking and extortion. The extortion scheme involved Lucchese associates working as building inspectors passing out bribes to construction officials around the city. The contractors had to pay them bribes in order to keep working. [77] Croce was arrested on November 18, 2009 along with family soldier Joseph Datello and (Joseph brother) Frank Datello in Operation Night Gallery were the NYPD investigated his base of operation a bar on Staten Island called Night Gallery.[78] [79]

Imprisoned capos

  • (In prison) Anthony "Bowat" Baratta - a former capo in the Bronx faction. Ran large drug trafficking operations in the 1990s and sat on the family's Ruling Panel. Baratta is currently imprisoned on narcotics and racketeering charges. His projected release-date is September 25, 2012.[80]
  • (In prison) George "Goggles" Conte - a former capo in the Bronx and Manhattan factions who is involved in racketeering, drug trafficking, extortion and loansharking activities. Convicted of these charges in 1995, including murder-conspiracy. Currently imprisoned, Conte's projected release-date is March 3, 2014.[81][82][83]
  • (In prison) Domenico "Danny" Cutaia - Capo with loansharking, extortion and money laundering operations under the Brooklyn faction (The Vario Crew). Former messenger between the imprisoned Amuso and the 'Ruling Panel'.[84] On October 25, 2009 Cutaia was sentenced to serve three years in prison for bank fraud. Cutaia is now 72 years old and reportedly suffering from multiple sclerosis. [85]
  • (In prison) George "Georgie Neck" Zappola - a former capo since the regime of Amuso and Casso in the 1980s. Operated out of the Brooklyn wing with racketeering, extortion activities. Zappola is currently imprisoned on murder-conspiracy charges in aid of racketeering with Frank Papagni. His projected release date is March 3, 2014[80][86][87][88]
  • (In prison) Joseph "Joey Flowers" Tangorra - a former capo whose crew was based in Bensonhurst Brooklyn and was involved in extortion and racketeering activities. Tangorra is currently incarcerated and reportedly suffers from mental illness. His projected release date is December 9, 2014.[89] [90] [91]
  • (In prison) Frank "Bones" Papagni - a former capo since the early 1990s, with racketeering, illegal gambling and loansharking operations in the Brooklyn section. He is serving 20 years for the attempted murder conspiracy on John A. Gotti in 1993. Papagni's projected release-date is November 24, 2015.[80][86]

New Jersey

  • Ralph Vito Perna - Capo in the Jersey crew. Was arrested in December 2007 with Joseph DiNapoli, Matthew Madonna two members of the family’s ruling committee. The Jersey crew was involved with running a gambling operation that earned approximately $2.2 billion in a 15-month period. The crew also worked with New Jersey correction officers and members of the Nine Trey Gangster, a set in the Bloods gang. The crew would use gang members to smuggle drugs and pre-paid cell phones into New Jersey state prisons. [92]
  • Robert "Bucky the Boss" Caravaggio - Capo in the Jersey Crew who oversees operations in the northern New Jersey, especially Morris County. Caravaggio also worked with Carlo Taccetta.[93]
  • Joseph "Joey" Giampa - Capo in the Jersey Crew. Giampa has a stepson named Gennaro Vittorio, a.k.a. Gerry Giampa who is also involved in organized crime.[94][95]

Imprisoned capos

  • (In prison) Michael "Mad Dog" Taccetta - Capo of the Jersey Crew and boss of the entire New Jersey faction of the Lucchese family. Longtime rival of Victor Amuso. Currently serving life in prison for conspiracy charges and drug trafficking.[96][97][98] His younger brother Martin Taccetta is reportedly the acting boss of the Jersey Crew.
  • (In prison) Martin Taccetta - Capo part of the Jersey Crew was released from prison in 2005 due to lack of evidence in his trial, and wrongfully being accused of murder charges in his older brother Michael Taccetta's trial in 1993. On July 30, 2009 the New Jersey Supreme Court reversed lower court decision that granted Taccetta release and reinstated Martin life sentence for racketeering and extortion.[99] [100]
  • (In prison) Michael J. Perna - a former Capo in the Jersey faction; he began working for the Lucchese families Jersey faction sometime in 1976; by the 1980s was serving as the Underboss of the Jersey Faction for Michael Taccetta; acquitted in the 21 month trail along with other Jersey faction members on August 26th 1988; in 1993 was convicted of gambling and extortion along with Michael and Martin Taccetta with the testimony of Thomas Ricciardi and Anthony Accetturo; relatives include his father Joseph Perna, younger brother Ralph; The 67 year-old is currently imprisoned at the Federal Correction Institution at Fairton, New Jersey his projected release date is August 2nd 2015.[101][102][103][104][105]

Soldiers

A soldier, also known as sgarrista, soldato, wiseguy, button, buttonman or goodfella, is a made man and has already proven himself to the family. He becomes a made guy after the voting of the captains, who then pass the message up to the boss or underboss. When he is made he takes an oath to honor the family. A soldier is one of the lowest ranks in the crime family but still has much power over associates and friends. The soldier is then assigned into a crew and given a capodecine (Captain). The caporegime gives orders and jobs from collecting money to hits.

  • Frank "Big Frank" Lastorino - soldier in the Bensonhurst, Brooklyn Crew. A former Capo and Consigliere, Lasterino hatched the plot to kill both John A. Gotti and captain Steven Crea to take over the Lucchese family in the early 1990s. Lastorino was released from federal prison on December 23, 2008 after serving 14 years on racketeering, extortion and conspiracy to commit murder.[80][86][106]
  • (In prison) John Baudanza - soldier since 1995, when he was inducted and placed in his father-in-law Domenico Cutaia's crew. John's father is Carmine Baudanza, a longtime Colombo crime family associate and his uncle is Joseph Baudanza, a powerful Colombo captain. In December 2007, John Baudanza, along with his father and uncle, were sentenced to prison. He is currently serving a seven-year sentence in Upstate New York and his projected release date is July 20, 2014.[107]
  • Ralph Cuomo - soldier and owner of Ray's Pizza in Little Italy. In 1969, Cuomo was convicted of narcotics trafficking after being found with 50 pounds of high quality heroin. In 1998, Cuomo confessed to discussing heroin drug sales in the pizzeria with Lucchese soldier Frank Gioia, Jr. (In 1998 Gioia became a government witness and testified against Lucchese Capos and soldiers)[108][109]
  • Anthony Pezzullo - soldier and member of the "Lucchese Construction Group". The group consisted of (acting boss) Steven Crea, (capo) Dominic Truscello, (capo) Joseph Tangorra, (soldiers) Phillip Desimone, Joseph Datello (a member of Truscello crew), Joseph Arthur Zambardi and associate Andrew Reynolds. The group was involved in bid rigging, extorting construction companies, and corrupting union locals.[110]
  • Salavatore Cutaia – soldier whose father, Domenico Cutaia, is a high-ranking Lucchese capo. Salavtore’s son Joseph Cutaia is considered to be an associate in the family. His son Joseph was charged on December 24, 2009 for an attempted robbery and stick up of a Bensonhurst, Brooklyn couple along with Nicholas Bernardo.[114]
  • Michael "Mikey Bones" Carcione - soldier and former acting capo for Domenico Cutaia’s crew, formerly known as The Vario Crew. The crew operates around Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. In 2008 Carcione was arrested along with capo Domenico "Danny" Cutaia, soldiers John Baudanza (a son-in-law to Cutaia), Salvatore Cutaia (son of Domenico Cutaia), associates Steven Lapella, Victor Sperber, Louis Colello, and John Rodopolous for loansharking, illegal gambling among other illegal criminal activities.[117]

Family crews

A crew is controlled by a capo and he runs all the criminal operation is specific area. The soldiers in his crew run illegal activity like gambling, loansharking, bookmaking, extortion, fencing, and other criminal activities. They pay tribute to the capo and his sends money to the boss and underboss. The soldiers in the crew are mademan and have associate (who are not mademen) working for them in illegal activity. An associate is trying to make a name, for himself in hopes of one day becoming a made guy. This can only happen if he is a full blooded Italian that has proven himself.

New Jersey faction

The Jersey Crew, which operates in Newark, New Jersey, and the Northern New Jersey counties of Essex, Union, Monmouth and Morris, behaves like a faction within the Lucchese crime family. The leader of the Jersey crew/faction is Michael Taccetta. The Jersey Faction has other capos running crews in the New Jersey area. [93]

  • Imprisoned Boss - Michael Taccetta
  • Acting Boss/capo- Ralph Perna [119]
  • Capo - Robert "Bucky the Boss" Caravaggio [93]
  • Capo - Joseph "Joey" Giampa
  • Philadelphia branch - Nicodemo Scarfo, Jr. - a soldier in the family operating in South Jersey and Philadelphia.[120]

Recruitment gang

The Tanglewood Boys is a recruitment gang for the Lucchese family and occasionally the other crime families. Young Italian men join the gang to prove themselves as candidates for mob associates. The group operates in Yonkers, New York.[121]

Lucchese controlled unions

The Lucchese family has taken over unions across United States. The crime family has extorted money from the unions in blackmail, strong-arming, violence and other matters to keep there control over the market. Similar to the other four crime families of New York City they worked on controlling entire unions. With the mob having control over the union they control the entire market. Bid-rigging allows the mob to get a percentage of the income on the construction deal only allowing certain companies to bid on jobs who pay them first. The mob also allows companies to use non-union workers to work on jobs the companies must give a kickback to the mob. Unions give mob members jobs on the books to show a legitimate source of income. The mafia members get into high union position and began embezzling money from the job and workers.

  • Clothes manufacturing - In the Garment District of Manhattan, the Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employees Locals 10, 23, 24, and 25 were controlled by members of the Lucchese family. Lucchese Associates would extort the businesses and organize strikes. Today some unions still are working for the family.[122] [123] [124] [125]
  • Food distribution - At the Hunts Point Cooperative Market in the Hunts Point section of the Bronx, the Lucchese family controlled unions involved in the food distribution industry.
  • Airport services and freight handling - At John F. Kennedy International Airport, LaGuardia and Newark Liberty, the unions were controlled by the Lucchese family.
  • Construction - Teamsters unions in New York City and New Jersey have been under Lucchese control.
  • Newspaper production and delivery - In November 2009, Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau sent search warrants to investigate the Newspaper Mail Deliverers Union. This union controlled circulation, production and delivery offices at The New York Times, the The New York Post, the The New York Daily News and El Diario La Prensa. When the Cosa Nostra took control over the union, the price and costs for newspapers increased. Charges were put against many union members as well as the former union President Douglas LaChance. LaChance is accused as being Lucchese crime family associate. In the 1980s LaChance was convicted on labor racketeering charges and served five years in prison. He was also involved in the Manhattan 1990s case were New York Post was being strong-armed in to switching their delivery companies, but was acquitted in the case.[126] [127]

Allied and Rival criminal groups

Allied

  • Lucchese and Gambino Alliance (1953–1985). The alliance started with Tommy Lucchese, Carlo Gambino and Vito Genovese taking over the commission. Then Gambino and Lucchese decided to get rid of Genovese by teaming up with Costello and Luciano. With Genovese out of the way, they controlled the commission and organized crime in New York City. Gambino was the new head of the Commission (or Boss of Bosses). This allowed Gambino and Lucchese to make deals and work together on many occasions. They used their power to start a Colombo family war in the 1960s by backing the Gallo brothers. This allowed them to take new territory and gain more power in the New York City underworld. Gambino and Lucchese even went as far as stripping Joe Bonanno of his boss title, starting another family war. By taking Bonanno ou,t there was know one the challenge their power. The alliance continued with Gambino and Carmine Tramunti, then Gambino and Anthony Corallo to finally Paul Castellano and Anthony Corallo. The alliance ended when Castellano was killed by John Gotti's order.
    • (The 1999–present alliance) The new alliance between the two families was started by acting Boss Steven Crea teaming up with Gambino family capos in 1999. They would extort the construction industry and would make millions in bid-rigging together. [128]
  • Lucchese and Genovese Alliance(1955-1959). This early alliance started in the mid-1950s when Vito Genovese convinced both Carlo Gambino and Tommy Lucchese into plotting the breakup of the Costello-Anastasia alliance. Genovese and Gambino were both underbosses in their families and wanted Lucchese's support to become bosses. The first target was Costello. Genovese ordered a murder attempt on Costello, which failed on May 2, 1957. However, the attempt persuaded Costello to retire from mob life, leaving the family to Genovese. The second target was Anastasia. On October 25, 1957, a hit ordered by Gambino killed Anastasia, allowing Gambino to become the new family boss. After the abortive 1957 Apalachin meeting, Genovese began to lose respect in the commission. Genovese was arrested in 1959 but unknown to him his allies had switch sides to help Costello and Luciano take him out.
    • (The 1986-\–present alliance) The new alliance started in 1986 with Vincent Gigante and Victor Amuso the bosses of the two families teaming up against John Gotti. Gotti had ordered the murder of Gambino family Boss Paul Castellano who was the head of the Commission (or Boss of Bosses). This started a three family war; the Genovese and Lucchese families versus the Gambino family. The alliance tried to get revenge for the murder of Castellano and order the killing of Gambino family underboss Frank DeCicco. The alliance is still strong today and the two families operate on deals around New York City. Joseph DiNapoli a member of the family's three man ruling panel has two brothers in the Genovese crime family; Vincent "Vinny" DiNapoli, a captain, and Louis DiNapoli, a soldier in Vincent's crew.
  • Lucchese and Greek mafia alliance started in the early 1980s. The Velentzas Family, a Greek-American criminal organization led by Spiros Velentzas, operated in Astoria, Queens and other Greek communities in the city. The Lucchese crime family offered Velentzas protection in return for a percentage of his gambling profits.
  • Lucchese and Russian mafia alliance took place in the late 1980s. Marat Balagula was a Russian criminal boss whose organization controlled Brighton Beach and other Russian communities. When the Colombo crime family tried to extort payments from Balagula's lucrative gasoline business, he met with Lucchese crime family consigliere Christopher Furnari. Funari offered Balaqula an alliance to protect him from the other New York Cosa Nostra families

Rivals

  • The Cuban Mafia called La Coporacion (or the Corporation) and was led by Jose Miguel Battle, Sr. a Cuban born male who set up an organization in Miami, Florida to Union City, New Jersey. He worked from Union City, New Jersey with help from Bonanno family Capo Joseph "Bayonne Joe" Zicarelli up into the 1980s. He then began to work with another mafia family Genovese Capo James Napoli. In 1985 he Corporation battled with Lucchese family members over control of number rackets.[129][130]
  • The Albanian Mafia called the Rudaj Organization was led by Boss Alex Rudaj, Nikolla Dedaj and Italian Nardino Colotti were operating in Yorktown New York, Bronx, and Queens. The group started in 1993 and it leadership and power has now been shut down by the Italian Mafia and criminal prosecution in 2004. The Rudja Organization had a brief fight for control of gambling rackets in Astoria, Queens with the Lucchese family. The Albanian muscle attacked two Greek associates of the Lucchese family on August 3, 2001.[131][132][133][134]

Deceased members

  • Patrick Testa - a made member of the DeMeo Crew in the Gambino crime family before tranfering to the Lucchese family. Murdered December 2, 1992.
  • Remo (mobster) - a made member of the the Vario crew.
  • Angelo Sepe - a member of the Lucchese crime family and a suspect in the 1978 Lufthansa heist. Murdered July 18, 1984.
  • Anthony DiLapi – a Teamsters union leader in New York City's Garment District and a soldier in the Lucchese family. Murdered February 4, 1990.
  • Bruno Facciolo – a former soldier in Luchhese family and brother to Gambino family associate Louis Facciolo. Died in 1990’s.
  • James Burke - a Lucchese family associate who may have organized the Lufthansa heist in 1978. Died on April 13, 1996 from lung cancer.
  • Thomas DeSimone - a mob associate with the Lucchese family. Murdered January 14, 1979.
  • Richard "Toupe" Pagliarulo – was a soldier in the late 1980s and early 1990s before becoming a capo taking over Peter Chiodo’s Bensonhurst, Brooklyn crew in 1991 after Chiodo had turned states evidence. Pagliarulo later was arrested and died of natural causes in prison.[135] [136]

Government informants

  • Alphonse "Little Al" D'Arco - acting boss from 1990-1991, then demoted to capo. Became government witness on September 21, 1991.
  • Joseph "Little Joe" DeFede - acting boss from 1993-1998, then demoted to capo when imprisoned. Became government witness after his release in early 2002.
  • Anthony Casso - underboss from 1986-1993. Became government witness in 1992.
  • Anthony "Tumac" Accetturo - capo of The Jersey Crew from 1970-1988. Became government witness in 1993.
  • Peter Chiodo - capo. Became a government witness after being shot 12 times on May 8, 1991. [137]
  • Frank Gioia, Jr. - soldier. Became government witness in 1998.
  • Frank Gioia, Sr. - soldier. Did not testify against the family but entered Witness Protection Program with son Frank Gioia Jr. in 1998. [138]
  • Vincent Salanardi - soldier. Became a government witness in 2002.[139]
  • Henry Hill - associate. His life was the basis for the book Wiseguy and the film Goodfellas. He and his wife Karen Hill became government witnesses. [140]

Mafia trials

In popular culture

  • The 1990 film Goodfellas was based on Lucchese mob associate Henry Hill and The Vario Crew of the Lucchese family.
  • The 2006 film Find Me Guilty was based on the 1980's trial of 20 members of the Lucchese Jersey Crew.
  • In the 1991 film Out for Justice, the William Forsythe character "Richard Madano" was based on Lucchese mobster Matthew Madonna.
  • In the GTA IV video game, the Lupisella family is based on the Lucchese crime family, the Lupisella family is based in Bohan GTA 4 version of the Bronx and is one of the 5 Crime Families operating in Liberty City (New York City).
  • In The Godfather: The Game, the Stracci Family could be based on the Lucchese crime family. In the game, the family is based in New Jersey; the Lucchese family has a large power base in New Jersey.

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Further reading

  • DeVico, Peter J. The Mafia Made Easy: The Anatomy and Culture of La Cosa Nostra. Tate Publishing, 2007. ISBN 1602472548
  • Rudolph, Robert C. The Boys from New Jersey: How the Mob Beat the Feds. New York: William Morrow and Company Inc., 1992. ISBN 0-813-52154-8
  • Capeci, Jerry. The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Mafia. Indianapolis: Alpha Books, 2002. ISBN 0-02-864225-2
  • Davis, John H. Mafia Dynasty: The Rise and Fall of the Gambino Crime Family. New York: HarperCollins, 1993. ISBN 0-06-016357-7
  • Jacobs, James B., Christopher Panarella and Jay Worthington. Busting the Mob: The United States Vs. Cosa Nostra. New York: NYU Press, 1994. ISBN 0-8147-4230-0
  • Maas, Peter. Underboss: Sammy the Bull Gravano's Story of Life in the Mafia. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 1997. ISBN 0-06-093096-9
  • Raab, Selwyn. Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and Resurgence of America's Most Powerful Mafia Empires. New York: St. Martin Press, 2005. ISBN 0-312-30094-8
  • Volkman, Ernest. Gangbusters: The Destruction of America's Last Great Mafia Dynasty New York, Avon Books, 1998 ISBN 0380732351
  • Eppolito, Louis. Mafia Cop: The Story of an Honest Cop whose Family Was the Mob. ISBN 1-4165-2399-5
  • Lawson, Guy and Oldham, William. The Brotherhoods: The True Story of Two Cops Who Murdered for the Mafia. ISBN 978-0-7432-8944-3

External links








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