Friday, February 2, 2007

Ruggiero admits to being Genovese capo

Renaldi "Ray" Ruggiero, 73, admitted yesterday that he was a Genovese Crime Family capo in charge of operations in South Florida, according to a story by AP writer Curt Anderson published in the Miami Herald.

The admission came as part of a plea deal with federal prosecutors. Ruggiero had been charged with participating in racketeering offenses, including extortion, robbery, money laundering and possession of stolen property. The aging and ill Ruggiero signed a deal after his attorneys failed to have FBI wiretaps and tape recordings ruled inadmissable in the case.

Prosecutors have indicated that the FBI listened in on more than 12,000 telephone calls. They say the Palm Beach Gardens resident became the leading figure in local Genovese operations in 2003.

Ruggiero did not agree to cooperate with investigators. He faces a possible sentence of 20 years in prison and a $25,000 fine when sentenced on April 27.

Four other defendants charged with being part of a Genovese crew in South Florida have pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy. Two other defendants, including 96-year-old Albert "Chinky" Facchiano, are awaiting trial. Fiacchiano is also named in a New York indictment.

Fiacchiano's attorneys have requested that the federal cases be consolidated. It is believed that the attorneys are workin on a plea deal, according to a story by Vannessa Blum of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. That story indicates that a plea deal, already approved by the Department of Justice, would call for Facchiano to serve any sentence under house arrest instead of in prison.

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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
I am editor/publisher of crime history journal, Informer; publisher of American Mafia history website; 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.