Sunday, September 16, 2007

Secrets: Jurors break until Sept. 20

The Family Secrets trial jury, now considering whether four defendants were responsible for 18 Chicago mob murders described in the case, will not deliberate again until Thursday, Sept. 20, according to a story in the Chicago Tribune.

The jury break was announced Friday by U.S. District Judge James Zagel's office. Four days earlier, the same jury convicted defendants James Marcello, Joey "the Clown" Lombardo, Frank Calabrese Sr., Paul "the Indian" Schiro and Anthony "Twan" Doyle of racketeering conspiracy.

Marcello, Lombardo, Calabrese and Schiro could be sentenced to life imprisonment if found guilty of the racketeering murders.

The defendants:

James Marcello
Guilty of racketeering conspiracy, obstructing a criminal investigation, running an illegal gambling enterprise, and tax fraud conspiracy. Charged in connection with three racketeering murders.

Frank Calabrese Sr.

Guilty of racketeering conspiracy, extortion, running an illegal gambling enterprise. Charged in connection with 13 racketeering murders.

Joey Lombardo
Guilty of racketeering conspiracy, obstruction of justice. Charged with one racketeering murder.

Paul Schiro
Guilty of racketeering conspiracy. Charged with one racketeering murder.

Anthony Doyle
Guilty of racketeering conspiracy. Doyle is not facing charges in connection with the racketeering murders.

FBI says Bulger might be in Sicily

The FBI has released photographs and video that it says could be fugitive mobster James "Whitey" Bulger and his girlfriend Catherine Greig, according to a story by Helen Kennedy of the New York Daily News.

The images, taken in the area of Taormina, Sicily, were obtained through a U.S. drug enforcement agent who happened to be vacationing there in April and spotted the couple. The FBI is hoping others might be able to help identify the couple. A $1 million reward is offered for information leading to Bulger's capture.

Bulger led the Winter Hill Gang in Boston while aiding FBI investigations of local Italian mobsters. He has been charged with participating in 19 murders.

Historical feature on 'canary' Reles

Today's issue of the New York Daily News includes a historical feature by David J. Krajicek on Syndicate hitman Abe "Kid Twist" Reles. Facing possible electrocution for a series of killings, Reles decided in 1940 to aide in the prosecution of his old associates. He was a key witness in the 1941 case against mob boss Louis "Lepke" Buchalter, and prosecutors expected Reles to help send Albert Anastasia to the chair. But, on Nov. 11, 1941, Reles fell to his death from a window in the Half Moon Hotel, where he was under police guard. A couple of tied-together bedsheets were found out the window, and some suggested Reles was trying to escape. The great distance to the ground and the distance Reles landed away from the building were indications that he was helped out of the window. Reles became known as the canary who could sing but couldn't fly.

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.