February Mafia Timeline
||On this day in 2012 we saw the passing of Gerlando Alberti who was 74. Alberti was a member of the Sicilian Mafia and was involved in the Ciaculli massacre in 1963, the Viale Lazio massacre in 1969, the disappearance of journalist Mauro De Mauro in 1970, and the killing of Chief Prosecutor Pietro Scaglione in 1971.|
||On this day in 1936 we saw the birth of Arnold Squitieri who was a former acting boss and underboss of the Gambino Crime Family who was inducted into the family when John Gotti took the helm. In 2002 he became the acting boss of the family after eter Gotti was arrested. He spent time in and out of prison, and was recently released in December 2012.|
||On this day in 1904 we saw the birth of Charles Arthur Floyd who later went on to become famous as Pretty Boy Floyd, the American bank robber of the 1920’s and 1930’s. Although, he didn’t live a long life, dying in a police shootout at the age of 30. Was he victim of the Great Depression? Either way he is still talked about over 80 years later…|
||On this day in 1990 Anthony DiLapi was shot four times in the face and another four times to the body, The order was given by Casso and Amuso with Al D’Arco the man who organized the hit team. Two former NYPD officers (Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa) who worked for the mob were convicted of DiLapi and another 7 murders.|
||On this day in 2007 Ryoichi Sugiura, a senior member of a group affiliated to the Sumiyoshi-kai, a Tokyo-based gang with a history of violent conflict with the Yamaguchi-gumi was gunned down in his car, in Tokyo. This would spark a massive aftermath and turf-war in retaliation for the hit.|
|On this day in 1897 the World be greet Louis Buchalter, who was also known as Lepke. The name was shortened down from Lepkeleh which is mother used to call him (It meant Louis in Yiddish). During the 1930’s Lepke headed-up the mob’s enforcement arm which was known as Murder Inc. Buchalter also became the only major mob boss to receive the death penalty in the United States after being convicted of murder.
On this day in 1910 we also saw the birth of the future New Orleans mob boss, Calogero Minacore, better known to many as Carlos Marcello. Marcello was probably most famous for his possible involvement in the JFK assassination of 1963, however there was no links to be founded pinning him to the crime.
||On this day in 1993 at the age of 74, we saw Mr Big take his last breath. Frank Balistrieri was a Milwaukee mob boss during the 1980’s, and operated alongside Nicholas Civella and Care DeLuna. He specialized in Casino skimming and passed away of natural causes.|
||On this day in 1932 Dutch Schultz’s Irish born hitman, Vincent ‘Mad Dog’ Coll was gunned down after a previous hit on him went wrong. It was actually Dutch and Owney Madden who put the bounty on Coll’s head. 15 bullets from a Tommy Gun flew into Coll’s body. He was just 23 years old. Coll was also at the center of the media when he allgedly killed a child by accident during a kidnapping. He could have also been the mobster to have killed Lucky Luciano, after Maranzano gave him $25,000 to do the job.|
||On this day in 1943 Goodfellas and Casino actor Joe Pesci was born. Unfortunately he hung up his acting boots back in 1999, only making a few small appearances in films since then. What film and scene do you remember the most from Joe Pesci?|
||On this day in 1977 Frank Bompensiero who was 71 at the time, was shot to death at close range with a silenced .22 caliber handgun while standing in a phone booth. The order came from Jimmy Fratianno who was a close associate to Bomp.|
||On this day in 1976 Joseph Barboza, who has recently turned government witness was gunned down at close range with 4 shotgun blasts. Barboza himself was one of the most feared mob hitmen during the 1960s. He is reputed to have murdered at least 26 men in his lifetime.|
||On this day in 1913 Antonio Corallo, better known as Tony Ducks was born in East Harlem. His criminal career spanned over 70 years and he ran the Lucchese family with a tremendous amount of control. He was fairly quiet but powerful and intimidating none-the-less. He died of natural causes in 2000.|
||On this day in 1944 the World was introduced to Frank Matthews who was also known as Black Caesar or Pee Wee. During his career he ran a major heroin and cocaine empire and also managed to flee the country in 1973 when he was under indictment. He left with some $15 – $20 million, never to be seen again.|
|On this day in 1929, love definitely wasn’t in the air as we saw one of the most famous and largest mob killings to hit the headlines.
We are of course talking about the St Valentines Day Massacre that took place on a cold Chicago morning, which saw 6 mobsters and an optician gunned down at close range after a very well thought out plan by Jack McGurn and Al Capone.
The central target, Bugs Moran, was late to the meeting so didn’t suffer the same fate.
Read more about the St Valentines Day http://thencs.org/1929stval
On this day in 1969 the mob world would lose one of its most feared leaders. Vito Genovese was 71 and died from a heart attack. To this day, the crime family he took over in 1957 is still named after him, and he served as a mentor to future boss Vincent Gigante.
On this day in 1913 James Riddle Hoffa was born in Brazil, Indiana. Jimmy Hoffa was a labor union leader throughout the 60’s and 70’s and was connected with organized crime up until his disappearance. He played a major part in growing and developing the union which went on to becoming the largest in the U.S. He was 62 when he disappeared.
|On this day in 1936 the 33 year old Machine Gun Jack McGurn was assassinated in a bowling alley in Chicago. By 1936 he had been abandoned by the mob.
He was killed 1 day after the 7th anniversary of the St Valentines Day massacre. Jack McGurn of course was associated with planning the 1929 murders.
Read more about Jack McGurn: http://thencs.org/1SsUVgI
On this day back in 1943 we saw the birth of the Black Widow, Griselda Blanco who was the cocaine godmother of the Medellin Cartel during the 70’s and 80’s. She ruled by violence and murder which in the end would be her downfall. She was killed in a drive-by-shooting aged 69.
||On this day in 1878 Jim Colosimo was born in Colosimi, Italy. He was one of the Mustache Pete era crime bosses who headed what we now call the Chicago Outfit. Big Jim built a successful empire and owned a chain of brothels. The one move that would put Diamond Jim in the firing line was not pushing into the bootlegging of alcohol during early Prohibition, a move that would effectively put a contract on his head.
Read about how Big Jim met his end: http://thencs.org/1DY88Ba
||On this day in 1885 another old school mobster was born, Ignacio Antinori. Antinori would head the first crime family in the Tampa area of Florida, becoming one of the largest drug traffickers in the country. The family is now better known as the Trafficante Family. He died at the age of 55 when 2 shotgun blasts took the back of his head clean off. A message sent from the Chicago Outfit for poor quality narcotics.|
||On this day in 1891 Francesco Castiglia was born, better known as Frank Costello. Frank would go on to become “The Prime Minister of the Underworld” and one of the most powerful and influential mob bosses of all time with key political influences and control of a large network of gambling operations. He escaped an assassination attempt in 1957, and led the Luciano Crime Family as an acting boss whilst Luciano was behind bars.
Read more about the life of Frank: http://thencs.org/frankcostellootd
||On this day in 2002 the founding father of the Indian Mafia passed away at the age of 90. Karim Lala was known as the don of Mumbai and rose to prominence during the 50’s and 60’s, smuggling, gambling and running extortion rackets across the Mumbai area.|
|On this day in 1897 Old Man Nick Licata was born in Sicily. He would lead the Los Angeles Crime Family 7 years through from 1967 to 1974 when he would die at the age of 77. In his career he was held in contempt of court for refusing to break the code of Omerta and give information about the LA synidcate and its structure.
On this day in 1957 a ruthless killer in the Sicilian Mafia was born, he was involved in the murder of Giovanni Falcone in 1992 as well as over 200 other murders. Giovanni Brusca is the name, or Il Porco (The Pig) and he became part of a Corleonesi death squad which reported directly to Toto Riina.
|On this day in 1910 Carmine Galante was born. Amongst many things Galante was famous for being the acting boss of the Bonanno Family, a loyalist to Joe Bonanno, for that famous quote “No one will ever kill me, they wouldn’t dare”, and for the photos of him dead with a cigar hanging out of his mouth. Galante was power hungry and wanted to seize control of a massive drug-trafficking operation.
On this day in Sicily, 1946 we saw the birth of the future Montreal mob boss, Vito Rizzuto. Rizzuto headed his own family and was constantly in a battle for turf which saw many of his family killed. Despite knowing his life was in danger he sent the message that he wasn’t moving from Montreal. Brave move. He eventually died from Lung Cancer at the age of 67 in 2013.
||On this day in 1997 and 89 year old Joseph Aiuppa died from natural causes. Joey Doves was born and died in Illinois, but spent the early part of his career as a driver for the likes of Tony Accardo. He was one of the main suspects in the assassination of Sam Giancana in 1975 as well as the Spilotro murders of 1986.|
||On this day in 1956 a 64 year old Jack Dragna died from heart attack in LA. In his Mafia career Dragna lead the Los Angeles Crime Family and had many conflicts with higher powered mobsters such as Ben Siegel and his body guard Mickey Cohen who were encroaching on Dragna’s turf.|
|On this day in 1894 Guarino Moretti was born in Puglia, Italy. Better known as Willie Moretti, he played a part as underboss in the Genovese Crime Family through the 1940’s. With Hollywood connections and Frank Costello as a cousin Moretti was going places. Unfortunately, he got caught up in the 1950 Kefauver Hearings. Instead of taking the fifth like so many other mobsters called to the stand he didn’t and broke the code of Omerta publicly. He was gunned down in a restaurant the following year.
On this day in 1906 we saw the birth of Albert Anastasia’s brother, Anthony Anastasio. The lesser known brother ran the Brooklyn water front for years gaining control of 6 International Longshoremen’s Associations. He earned millions from kickbacks and pay-offs, and died of heart attack 6 years after his brother was gunned down in spectacular style. Anthony was 57 years old.
||On this day in 1957 George Clarence Moran passed away in prison at the age of 65, with $100 to his name. It could have been different for Bugs Moran though if he arrived on time on that fateful day in February 1929. Moran lead the North Side Gang and is said to be the mobster who popularized drive-by-shootings. He was also said to be behind the retaliation hit on Jack McGurn in 1936.|
||On this day in 1930 the first boss of the Lucchese family, Gaetano Reina was shot in the back of the head with a double-barrelled shotgun. The man behind organizing the hit was Lucky Luciano, who was given orders to get rid of Reina by Joe Masseria after Reina switched sides in the Castellemmarese War that raged on between 1930 and 1931. Tommy Reina was in fact one of the first victims of this war.|
||On this day in 1937, Aslan Usoyan was born. The Russian mob boss spent years embroiled in gang wars and was arrested 8 times during his lifetime, on charges of extortion. He was shot by a sniper after leaving his office in 2013. He was 75 years old.|
||On this day in 1906 and bringing the month a February to a close was the birth of one of the most notorious mobsters, by the name of Benjamin Siegel. Bugsy was famous for his temper, his charisma, for being the first front-page celebrity mobsters, and of course for the creation of the Flamingo Hotel. He was also one of the first members of Murder Incorporated, and for that famous assassination in 1947 where he was killed whilst reading a newspaper.|
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