Thursday, August 16, 2007

Secrets: Lombardo says he was just pretending


Joey "the Clown" Lombardo told the Family Secrets Trial jury that he has never been a member of an organized crime society and only occasionally acted the part of a mob enforcer in order to assist friends in debt collection, according to stories by Steve Warmbir of the Chicago Sun-Times and Jeff Coen of the Chicago Tribune.

"...Like James Cagney, Edward G. Robinson," 78-year-old Lombardo (right) testified in a Chicago courtroom yesterday.

Lombardo, on trial with other men accused of running the Chicago Outfit criminal organization, was ready with answers to all of his apparent underworld links as he took the stand in his own defense.

Asked about a photo that shows him at a restaurant table with underworld characters including former Outfit boss Tony Accardo and Joey Aiuppa, Lombardo responded that he had just gone in to the restaurant "to get a sandwich" when an old friend called him over to say hello.

Asked about the killing of Daniel Seifert, who was prepared to testify against Lombardo in a union corruption case, Lombardo responded that he had "no idea Mr. Seifert was gonna testify against us."

Asked about his use of the word "we" when he and alleged racketeer Louis "The Mooch" Eboli discussed retribution against a business that didn't pay the mob "street tax," Lombardo said he merely misspoke.

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Editor/publisher of crime history journal, Informer. Publisher of American Mafia history website mafiahistory.us. Moderator of Mafia-related Yahoo discussion group. Author of Wrongly Executed? Coauthor of Deep Water: Joseph P. Macheca and the Birth of the American Mafia and DiCarlo: Buffalo's First Family of Crime. Contributor of American Mafia history to Australian-published Mafia: The Necessary Reference to Organized Crime. Writer/co-writer of crime history articles for Informer, On the Spot Journal, Cigar City Magazine, Tampa Mafia Magazine.