The Buffalo New York Mafia family is not written about much and I have only touched on it.
I was told about the family by Jimmy Caci who was originally from Buffalo. Jimmy had a brother Salvatore “Sam” Caci who was the LIUNA local 210 president for years. There was also Al Caci and Charlie Caci aka Bobby Milano who were in Palm Springs, California. I've written in past blogs about the first use of WITSEC in the Buffalo case where Bobby Milano and Fat Stevie Cino were locked up because of Paddy Calabrese.
Stefano Magaddino was born on October 10, 1891, in Castellammare, Sicily. Because of Stefano there is a Buffalo Family. Stefano along with his brothers Antonio and Pietro got into a feud with the Buccellato brothers in their native Sicily. Pietro was murdered by the Buccellato faction and the remaining Magaddinos left for Brooklyn New York.
While in Brooklyn the Buccellato Clan tried to ambush Stefano and killed two innocent bystanders. Soon after the attempted ambush a couple of Buccellatos were killed and Stefano made his way upstate to Buffalo.
Stefano was soon taking over rackets in Buffalo and with Prohibition he quickly became an important figure in Organized Crime. Buffalo is situated so close to Canada that the waterways became a waypoint for smuggled booze. It was so important that Moe Dalitz made a deal with him to use the waterways to smuggle booze for Cleveland.
The money was pouring into the family and Stefano was able to send money to Salvatore Maranzano who was in the middle of a war for control of the New York Cosa Nostra.
The Commission was soon formed and Stefano along with his cousin Joe Bonanno were sitting on it. After the repeal of Prohibition the Buffalo Family branched out into Gambling, Shylocking and Labor racketeering. They moved into parts of Ohio and Canada expanding the family.
The FBI claimed there was no such thing as the Mafia until the Apalachin Mafia Summit in 1957. A few leaders blamed Stefano for the debacle and someone even tossed a grenade through his window.
In the early 1960’s Stefano’s cousin Joe Bonanno decided to make a move to take control of the Commision and the Cosa Nostra. He was planning on killing Carlo Gambino, Tommy Lucchese and Stefano himself to gain power. The Commision found out because Joe Colombo went to a Gambino and they stripped Bonanno of his position. Some of the family did not want their leader gone so this was the beginning of the Banana War that lasted from 1964-68 until Bonanno had a heart attack. It was during this war that Bonanno was supposedly kidnapped on orders from Stefano and held captive.
Bonanno had made a lot of inroads into Canada where Stefano also had crews working. Even today there is still a rogue faction of the Bonanno family. They were active during the reign of Big Joey Massino and they were even used when the Capos were killed as portrayed in Donnie Brasco.
Stefano had began to slow down by late 1960’s giving up control of the day to day running of the rackets to his underboss Fred "Lupo" Randaccio.
More to come...