This week I’ll talk about another couple of politicos that have come into close contact with some La Cosa Nostra Members. This week in the tabloids there was a lot of buzz about Tom Sizemore talking about Liz Hurley and Former President Clinton. That got me thinking about Liz Hurley and her past associations with Colombo Capo Donnie "Shacks" Montemarono. Donnie Shacks is a high level Capo in the Colombo Family who became close to Carmine Persico during the Joey Gallo war. He went with Carmine instead of the Gallos and he kept in his good graces. It has been said that he would dress up like women to do hits for the Colombos. The word around Brooklyn is that Donnie is a capable guy who is very hands on when it comes to work. When John Gotti was planning to murder his Boss Paul Castellano, he sent Angelo Ruggerio to speak with Donnie Shacks. He was a big deal.
Donnie was later caught up in the concrete case with Ralph Scopo, who controlled a Union and helped control the business. Donnie was convicted on 13 counts along with Ralph Scopo for running the Concrete Club. It was a "club" set up by the Mafia Commission so they could extort money from anyone using a lot of concrete in New York. Donnie Shacks was sentenced to 18 years but only served 11 and by 1996 he was living in Beverly Hills California.
I used to hang out in Palm Springs with Jimmy Caci, a Capo in the Los Angeles Family. Jimmy told me that he ran into Donnie Shacks in Palm Springs while he was on the lam, before he was sent to prison. Donnie was living with Sonny Bono, who was the Mayor of Palm Springs back then. Jimmy told me that he even took Donnie out to dinner and later dropped him off at Sonny's home that night. Sonny would later be elected to represent the 44th Congressional district as their Congressman. In fact, he would be the only US Congressman to have hit number 1 in the top 100 record charts. Sonny would die in a fatal skiing accident near Lake Tahoe on January 5th 1998 and Donnie Shacks would be at his funeral in Palm Springs. Jimmy Caci was a real straight shooter and I have no reason to doubt anything he told me. When Jimmy was up for a Appeal Bond in a Federal Case I drove to Palm Springs and was given a letter from the former Chief Of Palm Springs Police Department on his letterhead attesting to Jimmy's good character.
Sonny's widow Mary Bono stepped into Sonny's seat in the House and was elected 7 more times before being defeated in 2012. Donnie Shacks was soon living in a Whilshire high rise near UCLA where he would host parties that included a number of College Football players. The FBI would soon be looking into allegations of a point shaving shaving scheme involving Donnie Shacks and the football players. They were all cleared but Donnie Shacks was on their radar in LA and he didn't keep a low profile.
Donnie Shacks would soon act in a movie written and directed by Adam Rifkin and produced by a man named Steve Bing. The movie was A Night at The Golden Eagle and Donnie played the lead, a man named Tommy who had gotten out of prison. The Movie is okay, watch it if you want to see Donnie's acting chops and he did a good job playing himself. Steve Bing is on a list of donors from the William J Clinton Foundation having donated somewhere between 10-25 Million dollars. Liz Hurley is also Steve Bing’s former girlfriend and also the mother of his child.
I attended the premiere of “A Night at The Golden Eagle” on the Paramount Lot off Melrose. Seated right in front of me was a man named Tommy Gambino and his sister. I had spoken to and seen Tommy many times visiting his father Rosario "Sal" Gambino at FCI Terminal Island in Los Angeles Harbor. Sal Gambino is a Made member of the Sicilian Mafia, a distant cousin of the former Boss Carlo Gambino. Sal Gambino's brother John Gambino was a Capo in the Gambino Family in New York and both were part of the Pizza Connection Heroin ring.
In 1980 Sal Gambino was arrested for conspiracy to distribute Heroin after the Italian Police busted a shipment of 91 pounds of the drug. He was acquitted in the US but was convicted in Italy and sentenced to 20 years. Then in 1984 Sal Gambino was again arrested and convicted of Heroin related crime and sentenced to 45 years in prison and he has never taken responsibility for his actions. This is laughable because his relatives sold large amounts of Heroin twice to undercover agents and they made two calls to Sal Gambino referring to him as the Short One and he is short. When the the Feds took him down two bills from the marked buy money were found in his home. Sal Gambino is also banned from all Atlantic City Casinos because of his Mafia associations. Once locked up, Sal Gambino tried everything in the Law Books to get out but he would never admit guilt or take responsibility but he kept trying to get an early Parole. The Parole Commission recommended that Sal Gambino serve out his full sentence in 1995 because it was likely he was involved in and played a leadership role in the drug ring and Organized Crime.
According to the US Congressional report Sal's Son Tommy Gambino is a Made man in the Los Angeles Mafia Family and maybe Underboss. I was introduced to Tommy by Jimmy Caci and told he was the same as him. Sal Gambino set up a meeting between Tommy and I in Beverly Hills and when I was at Joe Isgro's Raging Bull Records, Joe had Anthony Gambino, Tommy's brother, working in the office.
Tommy was running a payphone business called Progressive Telecom, and guess who is a partner: none other than Colombo Capo Donnie Shacks. This is where things get good because Tommy Gambino would soon become friends with Roger Clinton, the brother of then-President of the United States. Tommy Gambino met Roger Clinton in a Beverly Hills Club when he was with introduced by Geno Vanelli, a music industry manager. Roger Clinton would later tell authorities that he knew that he was meeting Tommy Gambino because his father was seeking parole, but that after meeting him he realized what a close family Tommy Gambino came from. Tommy Gambino gave Roger Clinton his father’s files and after Roger reviewed them he felt that Sal Gambino had not gotten a fair deal. Where was it that Roger went to Law School? According to Roger he then agreed to contact the US Parole Commission for Sal Gambino as long as they held nothing back concerning the case. Roger Clinton would later tell investigators that Tommy Gambino told him if he helped get his father out of prison they would take care of him.
Roger made calls to members of the Commission and even had a meeting with one of them on behalf of Sal Gambino. To be completely fair to Roger, he also sought help for two other prisoners. The FBI wanted to set up a meeting between Roger Clinton and another "Parole Commission Member," really an undercover Agent, but the Parole Commission would not cooperate. Roger Clinton and Tommy made a trip to Washington DC in March of 1999 for who knows what. Roger Clinton was playing Golf with four people in Los Angeles when Tommy Gambino drove up on a golf cart and handed Roger a box with a gold Rolex watch in it. Roger told the men he was playing with that the man was Tommy Gambino and he was helping his father. Two of the men were US Air force Intell Officers and they were uncomfortable with what they saw, so they reported what they saw to the FBI. On September 27, 1999 Tommy Gambino's sister Anna wrote a 50,000 dollar check to Roger Clinton’s company. This money came from Lisa Gambino in Staten Island, New York, and both women frequently received deposits from Antonio Genovese (partners with John Gambino in G&G Concrete in New York).
Roger Clinton would later tell the FBI that money was a loan so he could buy a house and that all he took was existence money. Sal Gambino would then apply for a pardon from the President in 2000. The first call Roger made on January 20, 2001 was to Tommy Gambino's cell phone, and that was the day his brother was no longer President and Sal Gambino had gotten no pardon. Sal Gambino was paroled to an Immigrant Detention Center in 2006, and he was deported to Rome, Italy on May 23rd 2009.
Anyone who wants to read more should read United States Congressional Serial Set, No. 14778, House Report No. 454 and The Goodfella Tapes Book about the John Stanfa War against Joey Merlino for control of the Philly Mob. There is a great part of Tommy Gambino speaking to John Stanfa.