Sunday, May 21, 2017

Patsy Parrello: Genovese Oldfella

The mafia never stops delivering a story. I often wonder what to write about, but every week I have a few fresh stories to choose from.  This week is no different.  

The FBI really screwed up their big mafia takedown that was all the news last summer. They arrested 46 people from various east coast families, all interconnected.  They snared some big fish, like one time Philly Boss Joey Merlino and Genovese capo Pasquale (Patsy) Parrello.  The FBI had some issues with their informant and at least two special agents working on the case.  The majority of those picked up during the sweep have opted to take generous plea bargains offered by the US Attorney’s office.

Parrello is one of those who decided not to roll the dice and plea out this week. He copped to three counts of conspiracy to commit extortion for sending guys to collect his loanshark debts.  He will face between five and six and a half years in federal prison.  This deal is a far cry from the 60 years Parrello was facing for three racketeering counts he was charged with.

The FBI had a confidential human source who was close to Parrello and Merlino.  He recorded hundreds of hours of tape, but they failed to debrief him properly and some other problems came to light.  So rather than lose the case, they group was offered reduced charges.  

Merlino, who has spent a lot of time in prison, has not bitten on the deal as of yet.  Merlino was still on supervised release and did time for a violation while the FBI was making this case.

Parrello, a Genovese family capo and the owner of Pasquale's Rigoletto Restaurant on Arthur Avenue in the Bronx, is no stranger to trouble.  In 2001 Parrello was charged in a 98 count indictment of embezzling funds that totaled more than one million dollars from Local 11 and Local 964 of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters.

He and some other Genovese used S&F Carpentry, a unionized company based in Tuckahoe, N.Y., To pay and use non union workers.  They destroyed payroll records and threatened members of the union if they complained about non union workers on jobs.

He would end up doing a 7 year sentence for that case.  

This case involved having his guys attack a panhandler who was bothering people outside his restaurant. Threatening debtors, running gambling and other assorted scams.

Most people would be happy with just owning Pasquale's Rigoletto Restaurant.  The problem is, Parrello is no normal person, and I suspect if he lives till the end of this sentence it will not be the last we have heard of him.

For any of you who have not been to Arthur Avenue in the Bronx, it is worth the trip.  It is the real Little Italy, unlike the three small blocks called that in Manhattan.  Stop by Pasquale's Rigoletto Restaurant, they put out a great plate.

Bonanno Capo Vincent Asaro, known for his involvement in the famous Lufthansa airlines heist made famous in the movie Goodfellas, is a degenerate gambler who lost what little of the loot he got from the robbery.

Last year he beat the case the government brought against him for the robbery and murder.
He is now locked up on another case.  This week the government claimed he wanted to have the federal prosecutor on his case murdered. The Feds do not want him released on bail because he reportedly told another defendant in this case, ‘we need to take care of this bitch,’ and not  to ‘f**k it up like Vinnie.’  He was referring to Vincent Basciano, the boss of the Bonanno family who was taken down by the former boss of the family who recorded him while they were locked up together.

Like I said, the mafia always delivers!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

DeCavalcante Family: Still Here For Now

One mafia family that has often been mentioned but tends to remain beneath the shadow of the five New York Families is the Decavalcante family, also known as the New Jersey family.  The FBI claims that it is under the control of the Gambino family.  In the last month or so a number of them have been put away.

The family is named after Simone “Sam” Decavalcante, who took over as boss of the Elizabeth New Jersey faction in 1964. There had been a long string of bosses in the New Jersey area even before Prohibition.  Once Prohibition was in effect there was a lot of money at stake, so they fought a lot of local battles.  When Sam took over the family he consolidated groups and crews, doubling the amount of made men in his family before 1969 when he went to prison.

When he was released, he retired to Florida, remainingl an advisor to the family until the 1990’s. The family has fallen a bit from its heyday. They no longer sit on the Commission and while they work all over the Tri-State area, they do not control rackets like they used to.

One of their soldiers, Jerry Balzano, was caught on video attacking another motorist in a road rage incident a couple of months ago.  Balzano had previously been taken down along with over a hundred other mobsters on Mafia Take Down Day back in 2011.

It seems Jerry and several others smuggled in truckloads of cigarettes and sold them much cheaper as they avoided having to pay the state tax that applied to their sale.  He also helped some guys steal a tax refund check that was worth fifteen thousand dollars.  The indictment also charged him with collecting loan shark loans from a debtor in North Carolina.

He ended up taking a plea for racketeering and serving almost two years in prison.  He was then on supervised release when he was violated for possession of a firearm and sent back to prison for an additional four months.

Four months really does not seem like a lot of time, considering he is a felon.  The new case is all made by him on video and he comes off pretty bad, mostly because of his yelling. It will be interesting to see how much time the judge gives him for this case.

This is the mafia family the Sopranos is supposed to based on, and oddly enough they do behave like a bunch of TV clowns.

This past March, Charles Stango, a capo in the family, pleaded guilty to murder conspiracy and was given ten years.  Six other men, including his son, have all pleaded guilty and are either already serving sentences or will be shortly.

The family has fallen a long way in recent years.  

They used to have a lot of control with the unions for construction projects.  They controlled a number of landfills and other illegal dump sites. In the 1960’s the family ran a twenty million dollar a year gambling business.  Today, they swindle checks and sell cocaine.