Hey, youse guys know how the Mob has a lock on New York, New Jersey, and Rhode Island? Fuhgeddaboudit. In a historic roundup, the FBI has arrested 127 alleged Mafia members and associates operating in the three states — and one of whom was arrested in Italy. Charges include murder, labor racketeering, narcotics, extortion, arson, and illegal gambling .. or, put another way, approximately seasons 2 through 5 of The Sopranos:
Ninety-one members and their associates, including one in Italy, were charged with federal crimes that include conspiracy, arson, extortion, narcotics trafficking, illegal gambling, labor racketeering and murders that date back as far as 1981, according to a U.S. Justice department statement.
An additional 36 suspects were charged for their roles in the alleged criminal activity, the statement said.
About 110 people, including several high-ranking family members, were already in custody, Holder added, describing the raid as the largest single-day operation against the notorious La Cosa Nostra crime network.
Members of the New England LCN family and New Jersey-based Decavalcante family also are accused of related federal crimes, the statement said.
Ironically, The Sopranos was based in part on the DeCavalcante family in New Jersey. The DeCavalcante organization was presumed to be washed up after a hitman turned informant a few years back and its leaders began cutting deals to save their own skins. According to the FBI in the video, their organizational death and that of the American Mafia turned out to be at least somewhat exaggerated.
After a bust of this size, though, that may not be true for long. Andy McCarthy offers a succinct analysis only half in jest:
Not fuh nuttin’, but I dink deez guys gotta big friggin’ problem.
Madonn’! Andy is almost certainly correct. The prosecution of these cases will be very interesting indeed — as will be the watch on how many of these wiseguys turn informant when looking at life sentences and RICO prosecutions.