Federal authorities are pressing to collect almost half a million dollars in fines and judgments from reputed Chicago crime boss Joseph "the Clown" Lombardo, according to a story by Steve Warmbir of the Chicago Sun-Times.
The judgments date back to the 1980s. Lombardo (right) reportedly paid $250 toward a penalty of $143,409.58 in 1986. Since then, the government has been charging Lombardo 18 percent interest per year on the unpaid portion.
Lombardo's court-appointed attorney Rick Halprin has objected both to the timing of the government's demand - on the eve of the "Family Secrets" trial in which Lombardo is a defendant - and to the enormous interest rate.
"Apparently, this is a federally approved involuntary juice loan," Halprin has stated.
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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.