Tuesday, September 23, 2008

New England killer could win early release

After serving almost 20 years of his 33-year prison sentence, Gaetano J. Milano could win an early release on Oct. 8, according to a story by Stephanie Barry of the Springfield MA Republican.

Territory of the New England MafiaMilano, 56, was sent to prison in 1991 for the 1989 Mafia execution of William "Wild Guy" Grasso. Milano was a member of the New England Mafia organization known as the Patriarca Family. Grasso, a 62-year-old New Haven, CT, native, was a big shot in the same organization and is believed to have been striving for leadership of the group when he was shot to death inside a van driving down Interstate 91. Grasso was leader of the family's Connecticut crew and underboss of the regional organization. His body was found June 16, 1989, on the banks of the Connecticut River in Wethersfield, CT.

Evidence indicates that the FBI helped to conceal the involvement of mobster Angelo "Sonny" Mercurio in the killing because Mercurio was an FBI informant. Mercurio allegedly set up the Grasso murder by telling Milano that Grasso was preparing to kill him. A recent Milano motion for resentencing in light of that federal impropriety was approved.

In December 2006, a Milano accomplice was granted an early release on similar grounds. Louis Pugliano drove the van and aided in the disposal of Grasso's body. He had served 16 years of his life sentence when he was released.

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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.