After five days of testimony in Chicago's Family Secrets trial, Nicholas Calabrese was excused from the witness stand yesterday, according to a story by Jeff Coen of the Chicago Tribune.
Calabrese, 64, a mob turncoat and brother of defendant Frank Calabrese Sr., was cross-examined all day Monday. He stuck by his earlier testimony tying defendant James Marcello to violent gang crimes in the 1980s.
During direct examination last week, Calabrese described the murder of Nicholas D'Andrea in 1981 and the 1986 killings of Emil Vaci and brothers Anthony and Michael Spilotro. He claimed that Marcello drove him and other gangsters to a Bensenville home, where the Spilotros were beaten to death.
Anthony "the Ant" Spilotro had served as a monitor for Outfit investments in Las Vegas, but he violated underworld directives. When cornered by angry Outfit associates, Anthony Spilotro's final words were "Can I say a prayer?" according to Calabrese. At that moment, the brothers were rushed, beaten and strangled.
Under cross-examination, he was unable to specifically name Anthony Spilotro's killer. Calabrese said he and the late Louie "the Mooch" Eboli tackled Michael Spilotro, and he had his back to Anthony Spilotro at the critical moment.