Genovese crime family capo Joseph “The Eagle” Gatto passed away due to undisclosed causes at the age of 65. Gatto was said to have inherited then New Jersey based Genovese family gambling action once run by his father Louis “Streaky” Gatto. His father was reported to have run a multimillion dollar gambling empire in Jersey for the Genovese family but was convicted in 1991 at which time his son took over his operations.
Streaky Gatto also held the rank of captain in the Genovese family and was said to be a favorite of the late Genovese family boss Vincent Gigante. Streaky Gatto passed away in prison in 2002 after his brother Louis Gatto Jr died in 2000 while also in federal prison. In 2003 a Jersey organized crime commission identified Joseph Gatto as a Genovese family captain a leader of one of the five major Genovese family crews operating in New Jersey.
The Genovese crime family has long been operating in Jersey and has been the dominate mafia family operating in Passaic, Hudson, and Bergen counties. The Genovese family crews in Jersey run some of the largest loan-sharking and bookmaking operations in the New York – Jersey area’s.
Just last year Joseph Gatto got a pass when a grand jury declined to indict him in the “Operation Jersey Boyz” case run by the state police. In 2004 Gatto and 43 alleged mobsters were all arrested as part of the gambling and racketeering case. Gatto and other mobsters allegedly ran a vast offshore gambling operation that was run by his Genovese Jersey crew that took in millions of dollars that were shared by members of the Genovese , Gambino, Bonanno, and Lucchese mafia families. Gatto and his crew were accused of running a wire room located in Costa Rica known as Catalina Sports. The operation was reported to have had over 12,000 customers and was bringing in approx $300,000 a week for the mafia.
It is not yet known who is set to replace the long time Jersey capo but the Genovese family will keep it business as usual as they morn the loss of one of their own.