Tag: Raymond Patriarca

No defense for this plea

| July 12, 2011 | 0 Comments

No defense for this pleaCan’t wait until tomorrow. That’s when Kevin Reddington, a very fine lawyer, will try to explain why his client, Cathy Greig, should be let out on bail.

This, of course, is the same Cathy Greig who spent 16 years on the run with her boyfriend, Whitey Bulger, not the nicest guy in the world.

Whitey has probably put more people in the ground than O’Brien Funeral Home in Southie, and Cathy Greig was his willing and able traveling companion all those years on the lam.

Reddington filed a memorandum opposing the government’s insistence that Greig remain locked up.

The memo cites case law about the right to bail. It puts Greig, who has no criminal record, in some illustrious company. Among the cases cited are those involving Anthony Salerno, Raymond Patriarca Jr., and Carmen Tortora.

Fat Tony Salerno used to run a successful family business in New York: the Genovese crime family.

Raymond Patriarca, known as Junior, ran the family business his father built up – the Patriarca crime family – into the ground. When the feds wanted to match Junior’s voice to one they picked up on a bug, Junior made it nice and easy for them by going on a Providence radio talk show.

Carmen Tortora worked for the Patriarca family business. Carmen got put away for leaving a death threat on the answering machine of some guy who hadn’t paid the vig to one of their loan sharks. Like his boss, Carmen was never invited to join Mensa.

Cathy isn’t in Fat Tony’s or Junior’s or Carmen’s league, but she did help the most wanted man in America stay on the lam for 16 years. And if she didn’t know where the bodies were buried, she must know where some of the money is. If she’s locked up, the feds have leverage. If she makes bail, they got nada.

Reddington’s memo includes this ode to Ms. Greig: “By all accounts, she is considered by family, neighbors, and acquaintances as a kind, gentle person with a loving personality.’’

Funny. She wasn’t so kind, gentle, and loving when Tom Foley, the state cop, showed up at her house in Squantum on the night of Jan. 5, 1995, asking if she had any idea where Whitey was.

When arrest teams fanned out to lock up Whitey for a case that Foley had built in spite of FBI interference, they found that Whitey was already gone. Whitey’s former FBI handler, John Connolly, had given him the head’s up, so Whitey grabbed his longtime squeeze Teresa Stanley and hit the road. Foley drove out to Squantum with his old pal, the late, great Pat Greaney. Cathy had some choice words for the two troopers, none of which can be printed in a family newspaper.

Teresa missed her kids, so Whitey dropped her off in Hingham and picked Cathy up at Malibu Beach in Dorchester, just up the shore from all those shallow graves. Sixteen years later, Whitey and Cathy got grabbed in Santa Monica, a lot closer to Malibu Beach.

If released, Cathy will put her $350,000 house and her twin sister Margaret McCusker’s $500,000 house in Southie up as collateral. That’s a little more than the $822,000 in cash the feds took out of the apartment in Santa Monica.

At yesterday’s hearing, Assistant US District Attorney James Herbert noted that Margaret drove Cathy to Southie to meet with Kevin Weeks, Whitey’s gravedigger, who then brought her to Malibu Beach for the pickup.

Margaret pleaded guilty in 1999 to lying to a grand jury investigating Whitey’s and her sister’s whereabouts. That might get a mention at tomorrow’s hearing.

Good luck, Counselor Reddington.

Source: boston.com

North End says farewell to Jerry Angiulo

| September 4, 2009 | 1 Comment

In a final insult, Gennaro “Jerry” Angiulo was sent to eternal rest today in a spectacle the North End won’t soon fuggedabout – all on the 80th birthday of the Irish back-stabber who cost him 21 years of his life.

An honor guard from the USS Constitution saluted the World War II Navy chief bosun’s mate’s flag-draped casket as it was carried through the magnificent St. Leonard’s Church Peace Garden, their starched-white sailor uniforms a stark contrast to the undulating sea of black enveloping them.

“Among other things, he was a very, very generous man. He helped people,” Sal Fiamma, 74, a longtime friend of what he called “a dynasty family,” told the Herald as he watched a slow procession of Cadillac Escalades, Mercedes-Benzes and flowers piled on flatbed trucks from an outdoor cafe.

“I don’t know if there’s more flowers or more gold over there,” quipped a retired federal agent.

As a fellow Navy veteran, the agent, who requested anonymity, said he had no quibble with the military tribute, despite Angiulo’s 1986 conviction on racketeering, loansharking and gambling charges.

“Chief is a good rank,” he said. “He had to have some brains, let’s put it that way. I had a lot of respect for him.”

Not so, he said, for serial killer James “Whitey” Bulger, Angiulo’s archenemy in the South Boston mob and a top-echelon FBI informant, who conspired with the feds to topple the Mafia’s empire. Bulger, who turns 80 today, has been on the lam for 14 years and is an FBI Top 10 fugitive with a $2 million bounty on his head.

The hearse carrying Angiulo, who died Saturday at age 90 while he was hospitalized for kidney failure and a broken hip, drove him from the North End for the last time at noon as church bells tolled and dozens of curiosity-seekers lined Hanover and Prince streets, cameras whirring and flashing.

Hundreds attended a late-morning Mass for Angiulo, former underboss of the Raymond Patriarca crime family, who lorded over the North End from the 1960s until his arrest in 1983. Angiulo had a profoundly profane way with words and a hair-trigger temper, but left the bloodletting to crew members.

Today, the Rev. Antonio Nardoianni, pastor of St. Leonard’s, said the blood of Christ would wash away Angiulo’s sins.

“We all need forgiveness,” Nardoianni said as candlelight danced around Angiulo’s casket. “Death is inescapable. May Jerry and all our departed brothers and sisters rest in peace through the mercy of God.”

Angiulo’s son Gennaro Jay Angiulo Jr., 38, delivered an emotional and surprisingly humorous eulogy, telling a standing ovation in the pews, “Don’t mourn his passing. Celebrate this life. Because in the words of the great Frank Sinatra, Jerry did it his way.”

He said anyone who knew his father well enough “called him Jay. Everyone else called him boss.”

He recalled how his father was initially rejected by the Navy for having flat feet, but persevered, fighting for his country and cut off from loved ones in Boston because there were “no computers, no e-mail, no Facebook, no Twitter. In those days, it was what it was.”

Following his release from prison in 2007, Angiulo picked up where he left off, his son said, making improvements to the family compound in Nahant, where “we made out like we were camping” during the Blizzard of 1978.

Not one to sit still, however, he said his dad put chains on the wheels and cinder blocks in the hatchback of their 1976 AMC Pacer so he could get out and check on the storm damage.

His father’s “proudest day,” he said, was the 1982 launch of his 68-foot yacht “St. Gennaro.”

“Soon enough,” he said, “the government caught up to dad and the boys.”

Mourner Patrick Smith of Lynn, an acquaintance of Angiulo’s son Jason Angiulo, said the sendoff “was incredible. God rest (Jason’s) dad at this time. I think everyone should respect this part of his life. In this sort of life, family is so important. I hate to see it in movies as a joke.”

A musician who has played at Angiulo family functions said he felt as though he was watching a piece of Boston’s history pass.

“I just figured I’d never see anything like this again,” he said. “It’s the end of an era.”

Source: bostonherald

This rooster never ratted

| August 31, 2009 | 0 Comments

I never understood why the Mafia didn’t whack Whitey Bulger before he went on the lam.

Didn’t they notice that while Whitey and so much of the Irish mob skated, the feds led procession after procession of guys with vowels on the end of their names off to jail?

Then it dawned on me: Those Mafia guys weren’t rocket scientists.

Besides, the Italians were probably ratting as much as the Irish. They just didn’t get as good a deal.

Not everybody was a rat. Jerry Angiulo didn’t rat on anybody, and he spent 24 years as a guest of the nation to prove it.

Jerry died Saturday at Mass. General. Cause of death was old age and just plain meanness.

Jerry considered the fact that he got to spend the last two years of his life at home in Nahant, surrounded by his ever-patient wife, Barbara,and long-suffering son, Jason, a major coup, a flip of his fingers under his chin to a government that used more than one corrupt FBI agent to lock him up.

If Ted Kennedy was the last lion of the Senate, Jerry Angiulo was the last rooster of the Mafia. Everybody who followed him was a pretender to the throne. Raymond Patriarca – the father, not the goofy kid who ran the family business into the ground – made Jerry underboss without Jerry having the requisite hit under his belt because Jerry did something Patriarca considered far more important than producing corpses: Jerry sent lots of cash down I-95 to Providence.

That doesn’t mean Jerry didn’t have people murdered. Jerry would whack you in a heartbeat if he thought you wouldn’t stand up before a grand jury, or, like the late if not especially lamented Angelo Patrizzi, you went around town saying you were going to kill Jerry’s friends.

Murder aside, Jerry was king of the bookmakers in a day and age when everybody played The Number, when the Record-American printed the daily handle from Hialeah racetrack in Florida because that’s what the mob based The Number on.

I was a cub reporter at the Herald in 1983, when I first met Jerry Angiulo. The feds had lugged him out of Francesco’s before he could take a bite of his pork chops the night before. He had slept in a cell at the police station on New Sudbury Street, his clothes were rumpled, his white hair a disheveled mop of bedhead, he needed a shower, and he wasn’t too happy. He apparently had been allowed to read the papers because as he waited for his arraignment in federal court to begin he asked aloud, “Is there a Mr. Cullen from the Herald here?’’

Sitting right behind him, I put up my hand and said, “That would be me, sir.’’

He turned around, looked me up and down, thrust out his chin with that Mussolini pout of his, and said, with dismissive contempt, “Useless.’’

A few weeks later, he was standing at the elevators in the old Post Office Square courthouse, on his way to the Marshals lockup during a recess, and as I walked by he asked, “Your mother still living on Linden Avenue in Malden?’’

It wasn’t a threat. He just wanted me to know he knew.

Jerry didn’t like the government. The feds took away his freedom, and the Lottery took away his business.

I sent him a letter in the can once, asking if he’d like to talk about the way the FBI spent millions taking down the Angiulo brothers while Whitey and the Winter Hill Gang murdered with impunity. Jerry was no dummy. He saw through my obsequiousness, offering a two-word reply, the second word of which was “you,’’ the first word being unprintable.

Of all those Angiulo brothers, only Frankie is left. Frankie had the unenviable task of collecting from the bookies, and being berated long and loudly by Jerry if he didn’t get all the money. He lives alone in the building at 98 Prince St. where, 28 years ago, Jerry Angiulo boasted of murder and mayhem and money within earshot of FBI bugs.

Prince Street is a mausoleum now. A mausoleum for the mob.

Source: boston.com

Widow of mob victim testifies in lawsuit against US

| June 11, 2009 | 0 Comments

Notorious gangsters and longtime FBI informants James “Whitey” Bulger and Stephen “The Rifleman” Flemmi orchestrated the 1976 slaying of Revere nightclub owner Richard J. Castucci. But his life was not enough; they wanted his money, too.

Taking the stand yesterday in her wrongful death suit against the government, Castucci’s widow described being caught in a terrifying web as her husband’s killers – members of the Winter Hill Gang – and the New England Mafia both vied for control of her husband’s interest in The Squire, a popular and highly profitable strip club.

“I was scared,” said 72-year-old Sandra Castucci, recounting how Flemmi, a stranger to her, showed up unexpectedly at her Revere Beach home after her husband’s killing, asking about her financial interest in the club and suggesting he should handle it for her.

She was frightened by the visit and immediately alerted the businessman who co-owned The Squire with her husband. Then the Mafia got involved.

The widow, who was relying on weekly payments from The Squire to support her and her two teenage children, testified that a friend of her husband’s drove her to a store in Providence, where she was led into a back room and a face-to-face meeting with then New England Mafia boss Raymond L.S. Patriarca.

“He said that my husband owed him money and that the money I was getting I guess I wasn’t going to get anymore,” said Castucci, adding that Patriarca told her that she no longer owned any interest in The Squire.

“I was frightened,” said Castucci, wiping away tears as she recounted the meeting, which occurred about a year after husband’s slaying. It meant that the weekly payments from the club, which had already diminished from about $8,000 a week to only $1,000, stopped altogether.

During cross examination, Lawrence Eiser, a US Justice Department lawyer who is defending the government, asked: “You never phoned the police. Why not?”

“Because I was more frightened of the people who asked me to go there,” said Castucci, referring to Patriarca and his associates.

What Castucci did not know then was that the FBI had been told in 1977 that Bulger and Flemmi were suspected in her husband’s death and were trying to extort money from her, according to FBI memos filed in prior court proceedings. Yet the FBI took no action against the gangsters, who were both informants at the time.

Flemmi, who is serving a life sentence for killing 10 people, and hit man-turned-government witness John Martorano both provided chilling accounts of Castucci’s killing when they testified last fall in the Miami trial of disgraced former FBI agent John J. Connolly Jr. in a case involving another slaying.

Flemmi testified that Connolly warned him and Bulger in 1976 that Castucci was an informant and had told the FBI where two fugitive members of the Winter Hill Gang were hiding in New York. Flemmi said they decided to kill Castucci, who also was a bookmaker.

Martorano testified that he shot 48-year-old Castucci in the head as he sat in a Somerville apartment counting money that he collected for a New York bookmaker, then Bulger and Flemmi disposed of his body, which was found in the trunk of his car in a Revere parking lot on Dec. 30, 1976.

Thomas J. Daly, the retired FBI agent who was Castucci’s handler, testified during Connolly’s trial that informants told the FBI that the Winter Hill Gang was suspected in Castucci’s death and that Flemmi later tried to extort money from Sandra Castucci. He acknowledged that the FBI did not investigate Castucci’s death or the alleged extortion.

Connolly was convicted last year of plotting with Bulger and Flemmi to kill a Boston businessman in Florida in 1982 and sentenced to 40 years in prison, to be served after he finishes a 10-year prison term for a 2002 conviction on federal racketeering charges.

Bulger, a fugitive since 1995, is wanted in 19 murders.

US District Judge Reginald C. Lindsay, who died in March, ruled last year that the government was liable for Castucci’s death because of the FBI’s negligent handling of Bulger and Flemmi.

US District Judge William G. Young, who took over the case, is presiding over the nonjury trial and will determine how much the government should pay to Castucci’s widow and his four children.

Source: boston.com

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