Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Attorney: Rizzuto won't flip

A defense attorney for Vito Rizzuto said the reputed Canadian mob boss will not cooperate with U.S. investigators in order to win a lighter sentence for himself, according to a story by Adrian Humphreys of Canada's National Post.

Prosecutors had hinted that Rizzuto (right), 61, was looking for a plea deal. Defense attorney David Schoen refused to comment on any plea negotiations. But Schoen answered "unequivocally no" to a question on Rizzuto's possible cooperation.

Rizzuto was extradited to the U.S. from his home in Montreal to stand trial for alleged participation in the Bonanno Crime Family's 1981 assassination of three underworld figures in Brooklyn. He faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

Former Bonanno Family bigshots Joseph Massino (left) and Salvatore Vitale are expected to testify for the prosecution in Rizzuto's trial. Vitale's cooperation with authorities has been apparent, as he has already testified repeatedly. Massino, who reportedly aided an investigation against Bonanno boss Vincent Basciano, has not appeared for the government on a witness stand yet.

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Writer, editor, researcher, web publisher, specializing in organized crime history. (I am available to assist with your historical/genealogical research, as well as your writing and editing chores. Email me at tphunt@gmail.com.)
I am editor/publisher of crime history journal, Informer; publisher of American Mafia history website Mafiahistory.us; moderator of Mafia-related online forums; 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.