Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Former FBI agent Connolly gets 40 years, but...

John J. Connolly, a former FBI agent recently convicted of second-degree murder, has been sentenced to 40 years in prison, according to a story by Shelley Murphy of the Boston Globe. However, the judge in the case believes it is unlikely that the conviction will stand on appeal.

Judge Stanford Blake of Miami-Dade Circuit Court noted that a defense challenge citing the statute of limitations was legally correct. Blake said he could not throw out the conviction because the defense argument was not made until almost a month after the verdict was returned.

Connolly (left), 68, is already serving a sentence in federal prison that continues until 2011. He was recently convicted of leaking information to Boston area mobsters James "Whitey" Bulger and Stephen "the Rifleman" Flemmi that led to killing of potential government witness John B. Callahan. Callahan had knowledge of Bulger's and Flemmi's role in the 1981 killing of Jai Alai businessman Roger Wheeler. Callahan's body was found Aug. 2, 1982, in the trunk of his car at Miami International Airport.

Judge refuses Gotti bail request

A Manhattan federal judge has denied release on bail to John A. "Junior" Gotti, according to a story in the New York Daily News. Gotti (right) is awaiting yet another racketeering trial in New York. His last three such trials ended in hung juries.

Judge Kevin Castel also denied Gotti's request to have his latest case transferred to Judge Shira Scheindlin, who presided over the three Gotti mistrials. The defense argued that Scheindlin was familiar with the background of the case.

Gotti acknowledges having been a part of the Gambino Crime Family leadership but claims he gave up the Mafia life years ago. He was indicted in Tampa, Florida, for three racketeering murders and drug trafficking. He pleaded not guilty to the charges in August. Early in December, his lawyers succeeded in having his trial moved from Tampa back to New York.

Alite Targeted

Former mobster John Alite was targeted for assassination, Federal prosecutors revealed earlier this month, according to a story by Thomas Zambito of the New York Daily News. Alite, an old friend of Gotti, is expected to testify against Gotti in his upcoming racketeering trial. Alite was part of a Gambino Crime Family crew engaged in rackets in western Florida.

Prosecutors noted there is no evidence that Gotti was involved in plotting against Alite. Defense attorney Charles Carnesi said the prosecutors mentioned the murder plot in a bail motion related to Gotti, "to be inflammatory. Even they acknowledge he had nothing to do with it."

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.