Monday, February 23, 2009

Alite testifies for feds in Carneglia trial

Federal prosecutors put their latest underworld turncoat on the witness stand today. John Alite, expected to be a key witness in the upcoming racketeering trial against John A. "Junior" Gotti, testified in the Brooklyn federal trial of Charles Carneglia, according to a story by Tom Hays of the Associated Press.


Prosecutors are concluding their case against the 62-year-old Carneglia, a reputed soldier in the Gambino Crime Family who is accused of participating in five racketeering murders and other offenses. While Carneglia was supposed to be on trial, Alite's testimony dealt with a number of offenses charged against Gotti. Alite testified that Gotti collected monthly cash payments from a drug-dealing operation and ordered shootings of underworld rivals.

Alite and Gotti reportedly were close friends through the 1980s and 1990s. The relationship changed after Alite was charged in 2004 with being part of a Gambino crew operating in the Tampa, Florida, area. Alite reached a plea deal with prosecutors. He must testify against Carneglia and Gotti to fulfill his part of the deal.

This past summer, Gotti was charged in Florida with participating in murders and a drug trafficking operation. He pleaded not guilty to the charges. His lawyers succeeded in having the trial moved from Florida back to New York, where Gotti has managed to avoid conviction in the last three racketeering cases brought against him.

'Gaspipe' offers info on gangland murders

Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso has offered to provide authorities in Brooklyn with information on decades-old gangland murders, according to a story by Scott Shifrel of the New York Daily News.

"Gaspipe reached out and said he wanted to talk," according to Jerry Schmetterer of the Kings County District Attorney's Office. "He could be a help on past Brooklyn murders. His hunting grounds were in Brooklyn."

Casso (right), 66 and serving multiple life sentences for murder, is scheduled to meet with Michael Vecchione of the D.A.'s office tomorrow. A former captain in the Lucchese Crime Family, Casso was part of a bloody civil war in that crime family during the 1980s. He has pleaded guilty to more than a dozen murders and is suspected of involvement in 22 others.

Feds: RI mobster tried to hire killers

Anthony "the Saint" St. Laurent Sr., now serving a 56-month sentence for extortion, has been charged with solicitation to commit murder-for-hire, according to a story by W. Zachary Malinowski of the Providence Journal.
Federal prosecutors say St. Laurent (left), now 65, actively tried to recruit assassins while an inmate at federal prison in Fort Devens, MA. St. Laurent was looking to hire someone to kill fellow New England Mafioso Bobby DeLuca. His plot was discovered after St. Laurent described it to an undercover police officer.

According to a federal affidavit, St. Laurent told fellow inmates that the killing of DeLuca had been approved by Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio, reputed boss of the Providence, RI, based Mafia family.

US Mafia was born in New Orleans

book cover

 

Deep Water:
Joseph P. Macheca and the
Birth of the American Mafia

Written by Thomas Hunt and Martha Macheca Sheldon, Deep Water captures the life and times of Joseph P. Macheca. It finally sets the record straight on the man who was a warrior for the corrupt New Orleans Democratic machine, a pioneer of the Crescent City’s fruit trade, a Confederate privateer and the legendary “godfather” of the first Mafia organization to germinate in American soil.
While answering at last the questions surrounding the 1890 assassination of Police Chief David Hennessy and the subsequent Crescent City lynchings, Deep Water establishes the factual details of Macheca’s life and sets them against the vivid backdrop of Gilded Age New Orleans. Published by iUniverse.


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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.