Saturday, May 22, 2010

Charged with facilitating Boston drug transactions

Mark Rossetti, 50, of East Boston, Massachusetts, was arrested May 20 at his Bennington Street home on charges that he has facilitated the regional drug trade, acording to stories by Richard Weir of the Boston Herald and Travis Andersen of the Boston Globe. Prosecutors say Rossetti is a capodecina in the New England Crime Family based in Boston. The Globe reported in 2003 that authorities identified Rossetti as one of a handful of leaders in the criminal organization.

    Rossetti (left) and several others were arrested in Revere and East Boston at the conclusion of a lengthy undercover operation. The investigation began when Juan Valdez allegedly sold heroin to undercover officers. The state police used surveillance and court-approved wiretaps to gain information on the ring. Prosecutors allege that Robert Ciampi, 39, of East Boston, purchased heroin from Rossetti, who arranged for its purchase through Valdez. Rossetti's home allegedly was used to make the transactions.
    Police arrested Ciampi, Valdez and another man at the same time as Rossetti. State troopers reportedly found large amounts of cash and drugs in homes and a Valdez-driven automobile they raided May 20. State Police spokesman David Procopio told the press that the drug ring distributed heroin in Lawrence, Lynn and surrounding communities.
    Essex Assistant District Attorney John T. Dawley said Rossetti used Mafia connections to broker and safeguard drug transactions. "He provided protection," Dawley said.
    The suspects pleaded not guilty to all charges at arraignment in Lynn on May 21. Defense attorneys said the case amounted to little more than suspicion. They said evidence does not link their clients with drugs. "If [Rossetti] is supposed to be such a big kingpin, where is all the money? Where are all the drugs?" said Rossetti's defense counsel Randi Potash. Of the 142 grams of heroin discovered in the car driven by Valdez at the time he was arrested, defense attorneys noted that the car was not registered to Valdez and that the drugs were found in a secret compartment unknown to Valdez.

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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.