Monday, September 10, 2007

'Secrets' jury finds all guilty

Second round of deliberations
to focus on 18 gangland murders

The five defendants in Chicago's Family Secrets trial were convicted on all counts today, according to a story by Jeff Coen of the Chicago Tribune.

A federal jury convicted James Marcello, 65; Joey "the Clown" Lombardo (below right), 78; Frank Calabrese Sr. (left), 70; Paul "the Indian" Schiro, 69; and Anthony "Twan" Doyle, 62, of racketeering conspiracy. Doyle is a former Chicago police officer who was charged with providing secret details of a federal investigation to the mob. The other four defendants reputedly served in leadership positions in the Chicago Outfit.

After a trial of 10 weeks, the jury deliberated for four days before reaching the verdict. Jurors' names are being kept confidential.

The panel's responsibilities are expected to continue tomorrow, when they will hear arguments relating to 18 gang murders - including the 1986 slayings of brothers Anthony and Michael Spilotro - charged to the defendants. A second round of jury deliberations will follow.

Any subsequent convictions could result in imprisonment for life.

The defendants were among 14 indicted for racketeering conspiracy in April 2005.

One of the key witnesses in the case has been Nicholas Calabrese, brother of defendant Frank Calabrese Sr. Just before the trial opened, Nicholas Calabrese pleaded guilty to participating in at least 14 mob murders. Other defendants, including Nicholas Ferriola and Joseph Venezia, reached plea deals with prosecutors before the trial began.

Defendant Frank "the German" Schweihs was severed from the trial because of poor health. Authorities say Schweihs appears to have made a miraculous recovery from cancer, and a separate Schweihs trial is planned for April.

About Me

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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.