Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Compulsive gambler and loser may have lost his bet as FBI informant

Mafia Cops

Las Vegas has always been an attractive place for the hail-fellow, the hustler, and the man on the make.
With its shadowy history, seductive setting and proximity to a limitless river of cash, it brims with dreamers, scufflers and schemers. It's a spot where a guy who knows a guy can make a good living.
It was perhaps the ideal spot for the FBI to turn a man like Stephen Corso loose with a recording device. By all accounts, Corso was the street-wise guy Las Vegas tourists fantasize about and most locals rarely experience, the one who exists in dimly lighted bars and nondescript strip mall offices
Corso was an accountant by training, a salesman by calling, and a high-rolling degenerate gambler by compulsion when he got caught swiping clients' money to feed his blackjack Jones and penthouse lifestyle. He spent $5 million that didn't belong to him and was on his way to a prison stretch when he began cooperating with the FBI in 2002.

From what I've pieced together from public documents and street sources, the smooth-talking accountant found his true calling as an undercover informant. Reliable sources say Corso worked his way into the local mob scene and pulled the pants off some very experienced wiseguys.
According to a federal document from the Eastern District of Virginia, where Corso's efforts helped nail securities attorney David Stocker on a "pump and dump" stock manipulation scheme with connections reaching into the Securities and Exchange Commission, the accountant was a one-man La Cosa Nostra census worker.

"He provided information related to the activities of individuals with ties to several LCN organized crime families to include: the Chicago Outfit, Lucchese LCN, Bonanno LCN, Genovese LCN, Colombo LCN, Philadelphia LCN, Decavalcante LCN, and Gambino LCN," the document states. "Corso was also instrumental in providing FBI agents with information on individuals with ties to Russian organized crime, Youngstown, Ohio gangsters, and the Irish Mob which exists in the Boston, Mass. area."
Sounds like the guy did everything but dig up Jimmy Hoffa. Corso back-slapped his way into the Las Vegas underworld, then used his accounting and tax preparation skills to give the wiseguys a financial endoscopic treatment
He played an integral role in sealing the deal in the lengthy "Mafia Cops" case, in which Las Vegas residents and former NYPD detectives Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa were found guilty of acting as contract killers for the Lucchese crime family. Corso's work in Las Vegas proved beyond reasonable doubt that the Mafia Cops continued their criminal conspiracy years after leaving New York.
Corso's testimony was critical to the ... conclusion that the conspiracy continued into the limitations period," one government document states.

It's as simple as this: No Corso, no Mafia Cops conviction.

And it will be intriguing to see whether the government gets a victory in a related drug case involving Eppolito's son, Anthony Eppolito, and Guido Bravatti now that Corso has been sentenced to a year and a day for his own transgressions.

It's also been reported Corso worked in connection with the Crazy Horse Too investigation. I imagine former Crazy Horse official Bobby D'Apice, who now resides at government expense, won't be sending his former tax consultant, Corso, a letter of reference
At his February sentencing in Connecticut, U.S. District Judge Janet Hall seemed almost apologetic. Although she called Corso's crime "an extraordinary violation of trust," she admitted, "I can't find the words to describe the value, at least in my judgment, of this cooperation."

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Nick Bianco Mobster

Meet Nicholas Louis Bianco aka “Nicky” aka “ Nicky B” Nicky Bianco was a Gallo Gang shooter before he became a member of the Patriarca Crime Family

Nicky was like Joey Gallo, he was a warrior..His ethos was.”I was born a man, I will die a man”. Unlike the flamboyant Crazy Joey, Nicky was low-key, and level headed.. .In a finger snap, he would kill for Raymond “RayPat” Patriarca Sr.. Raymond loved his composure, and courage, and he moved Nicky up the leader ladder to a spot in the Patriarca high command.. Nicky was Raymond’s acting boss while he was in the slammer

I knew Nicky and I will go into greater detail in my new book . But here is a tasty tidbit
Nicky had a ton of heat on him from a beef he had in Providence.. He went west to Hollywood to hide out until things cooled off back home. Nicky stayed with a friend of mine. While he was with my pal, he knifed a guy . I had occasion to meet with Nicky years later. I mentioned this incident to Nicky,
and it knocked him for a loop…. Anthony Fiato

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Reputed N.Y. Mafia boss arrives in Quebec

The man named as the boss of one of New York City's notorious Mafia families has arrived in Canada - under the watchful eye of the RCMP - in a forced relocation to the country of his birth.
Salvatore Montagna, 37, nicknamed "Sal the Ironworker" because of his successful metal working business, was sent back to his native Montreal on Tuesday morning after being ejected from the United States, where he has lived since he was 15.
Arriving aboard a direct flight, accompanied by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials but none of his family, he was quickly processed at the airport by Canada Border Services Agency officers who quizzed him about his luggage - which had been packed by his wife - and about telephone numbers he was carrying.
As a Canadian citizen who is not wanted for any crime, he was allowed to enter Canada a free man.
He checked in under his real name at the four-star Sheraton Hotel in Laval, a 25-minute drive from downtown Montreal, for the night and at 10:35 yesterday morning checked out, well aware that he was under police surveillance.
A call by the National Post to his room went unanswered.
Mr. Montagna, who owns a multi-million dollar steel firm in Brooklyn, made headlines in 2006 when he was named as the acting boss of the Bonanno Family at the age of 35. Because of his youth he was dubbed the "bambino boss" by New York tabloids.
The Bonanno organization is one of the Five Families of the New York Mafia and for decades it maintained close ties to the Mafia in Montreal.
Mr. Montagna has denied the allegations.
"He wants to live a normal life there," said George Stavropoulos, his New York lawyer.
"He has had a few years of people following his every move. Now he wants to settle down again, learn French and move on; try to run his company from Canada."
Mr. Montagna was aware police had their sights on him here.
"It's something he is used to. He was hoping not to have to deal with that sort of thing in Canada as well," said Mr. Stavropoulos.
Canadian authorities have little to say about Mr. Montagna.
Neither the RCMP nor the Canada Border Services Agency would confirm Mr. Montagna was in Canada.
"He's not wanted so there is no arrest warrant or anything," said Corporal Caroline Letang, spokeswoman for the Montreal RCMP.
"We cannot confirm or deny any investigations."
A spokesman for Peter Van Loan, Minister of Public Safety, said the minister is aware of the file but could say nothing about it for privacy reasons. The Montreal police declined to comment.
The Bonanno Family has been hard hit by U.S. prosecutions since 2002, with more than 70 members and associates convicted for murders, gambling and racketeering.
That includes the conviction of Vito Rizzuto, godfather of the Montreal Mafia, for his role in killing three rivals in New York during a struggle for control of the Bonanno Family.
Facing lengthy prison terms, many Bonanno members agreed to co-operate with authorities.
The informants include the former boss of the family, Joseph "Big Joey" Massino. He was replaced by Vincent "Vinny Gorgeous" Basciano who was, in turn, imprisoned. That left the family in need of an "acting boss" who was free on the streets.
Authorities say that man was Mr. Montagna.
"He's a very below-the-radar type of person who came out of left field," said John Marzulli, a reporter with New York's Daily News, who first reported Mr. Montagna's alleged ascent.
"They were looking for some kind of stabilizing influence to put the pieces back together," he said.
The theory is the organization was looking for someone who had little past contact with the informants.
Mr. Montagna was born in Montreal but left with his family for Sicily at a young age. Over the years the family shuttled back and forth between Canada and Italy until, at the age of 15, they moved to New York. He never became a U.S. citizen.
In 2001, a prosecutor was unsatisfied with Mr. Montagna's testimony in a gambling case and charged him with criminal contempt. His guilty plea in 2003 gave the U.S. government the ability to revoke his residency status.
Despite intense scrutiny by authorities, he was never charged with any other offence.
Mr. Stavropoulos said the government ejected Mr. Montagna unfairly, describing it as "sour grapes."

Monday, April 20, 2009

James Genovese -- The life & times of the last great Pittsburgh mobster

On an 82-acre farm in wooded West Deer, the final act in the decades-long drama of the Pittsburgh mafia has played out.
Quietly, of course. That was always the way with the secretive Michael James Genovese.
Consigliere and protege to Sebastian John LaRocca, Mr. Genovese succeeded his mentor in 1984 to become the low-profile head of La Cosa Nostra in Western Pennsylvania, according to the FBI.
He died in 2006 at age 87. But his widow, Jennie Lee Genovese, and his adopted son, Michael A. Genovese (a Post-Gazette truck driver), have been fighting each other over what's left of the estate they both call home.
Jennie and her late husband executed the Genovese Living Trust 21 days before he died, under which she and Michael were co-trustees. But last year she removed him as a beneficiary and kicked him off the property. He challenged her right to deny him his inheritance but lost in Orphan's Court. A county judge ordered that Michael had to move out by March 1.
The property, meanwhile, has fallen into disrepair -- a metaphor of sorts for the decline of the Pittsburgh mob. It used to be a working farm, but when Mr. Genovese died, workmen stopped coming around to maintain it.
It's hard to reconcile this forlorn scene with Michael J. Genovese, who embraced cocaine dealing and oversaw the most lucrative period in mob history here until the feds brought it down with a racketeering case in 1990.
Now old FBI intelligence files, recently released to the Post-Gazette under the Freedom of Information Act, offer new glimpses of his life. Although heavily redacted, they paint a fuller picture than ever before. read more

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Sliwa Sued For Mob Slander

Magazine publisher Frank DiMateo has filed a lawsuit against Degenerate Dirtbag Curtis Sliwa over a YouTube video the Guardian Angels leader made, charging DiMateo’s publishing company was part of an organized crime money laundering outfit. .In his January 20 YouTube video (which has been taken down by Sliwa), Sliwa is seen crouched down next to a news kiosk in a New York City Subway (btw, it is against the law to photograph the New York City subway station and it is unknown if Sliwa had permission to shoot there) holding DiMateo’s MobCandy magazine. In his trademark rat-a-tat-tat, moolah-schmoolah delivery, Sliwa contends the magazine is “put out by the Gambino-Gotti crime family.” He then states MobCandy does not have sponsors and asked, “how are they able to exist when they have no advertising?”. Answering his own question, Sliwa concluded, “Maybe they’re laundering money through vendors, drug dealers, criminals — people with lots of fat cash, who got to be able to launder it properly before they can use it — [a] great opportunity for these mags.”’s Chris Chiarmonte posted a video response to Sliwa’s charges, proving that the lifestyle magazine actually has many sponsors and Mob Candy is a legitimate,

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Las Vegas strip clubs waging high-stakes cash-for-customers war

When the cab pulled up outside Rick's Cabaret Gentlemen's Club, the driver might not have fully appreciated he was about to set a Las Vegas record in the ongoing topless/taxi war.

He delivered four customers over the weekend and was tipped $100 by the club for each one. That's right: a $400 "tip" for dropping off riders

While casino resorts are slashing prices and bringing out bargain rates for rooms, food and fun, Treasures and Rick's are leading an unprecedented increase in the cash-for-customers game. One industry source says Treasures upped the ante as high as $105 per customer. (A Treasures manager said $105 was "high," but "we are very competitive. That's all I can really tell you.")

At the moment, the top rate is a C-note per paying customer. Customers pay an average of $30 apiece to enter the club, and some clubs have taken to charging up to $25 for two Coronas in an effort to recoup the tip out. Now that they've raised the stakes, other clubs must follow suit or suffer a drop in business. Like a high-stakes poker player, Rick's CEO and President Eric Langan says he has no intention to be outbid in the topless-taxi war and is willing to write off the expense as the cost of marketing his publicly-traded chain of topless cabarets.
Read More from John L Smith Las Vegas Review Journal