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Tag: gangster

Ex-FBI Agent to Plead Guilt to Perjury Following ‘Whitey’ Bulger Testimony

"Whitey" Bulger

“Whitey” Bulger

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former FBI agent plans to plead guilty to perjury charges as early as Monday after prosecutors said he lied during the James “Whitey” Bulger case in Boston.

The Associated Press reports that Robert Fitzpatrick is accused of lying to jurors when defense attorneys called him as the first witness in the high-profile trial.

Prosecutors accused Fitzpatrick, 76, of falsely claiming to recover the rifle used to assassinate Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968 and exaggerating claims that he tried to get supervisors to stop using Bulger as an informant because he wasn’t helpful.

Former FBI Agent Recalls Real-Life ‘Casino Story’ And the Perp Walk

fbi badgeJane Ann Morrison
Las Vegas Review-Journal

Although I have never been a perp, I participated on a famous perp walk in 1983 and have the black-and-white photo to prove it.

The perp was later-to-be-murdered mobster Anthony Spilotro. The serious-looking FBI agent walking him by the press was Marc Kaspar.

The journalists waiting to ask questions that wouldn’t be answered were George Knapp and the R-J’s federal court reporter at the time. That would be me. The one with the Afro.

During a panel Saturday, Kaspar told the behind-the-scenes story of that perp walk outside the Foley Federal Building.

Spilotro had been indicted on racketeering by a federal grand jury, and Kaspar went to arrest him. The two men had known each other for years because Kaspar has been on the FBI’s Las Vegas organized crime squad since coming to Las Vegas in 1977, and the squad’s No. 1 target was the Chicago mob’s enforcer.

You would think they would be bitter enemies. Not so. When Spilotro was arrested, Kaspar didn’t even use his handcuffs. Until they got close to the federal building and Kaspar said, “Tony, I’ve got to put handcuffs on you.”

Spilotro offered his hands up, he was cuffed, and they did the perp walk. Kaspar knew what he had to do, so did Spilotro; it was all very professional.

Kaspar has donated those cuffs to the Mob Museum, which hosted the Saturday panel discussion of what was real and what was fiction in the 1995 movie “Casino.”

Kaspar was speaking out publicly for the first time about his experiences as the case agent in the Spilotro investigation.

Oscar Goodman gave his views from the perspective of the attorney representing Spilotro and his chum Frank “Lefty” Rosenthal.

Former Gaming Control Board member Jeff Silver spoke about his role chasing the mob as a state regulator.

Former FBI agent Deborah Richard told her experience in two previous columns, and retired television reporter and anchor Gwen Castaldi told of the challenges facing journalists covering the mob in the 1970s and 1980s.

As Castaldi said, without cellphones and the Internet, it wasn’t easy, especially because news about the mob in Las Vegas was frequently connected to news about the mob in Kansas City, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Detroit and Chicago.

Kaspar told about a 1981 search where the subject — in this case Stardust employee Phil Ponto — had been tipped. The agents searched his apartment looking for marked money that had been skimmed from the Stardust.

The safe was opened, and inside was nothing but Ponto’s Social Security check.

It was Ponto’s way of flipping off the FBI, much like the simultaneous search that resulted in agents coming up with cookies and a bottle of wine in a car trunk.

To read more click here. 

Another Bizarre Twist in 25-Year-Old Art Heist Involving Aging Gangster

Theft at Gardner Museum

Theft at Steward Gardner Museum.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The bizarre case involving the 25-year-old Steward Gardner Museum heist took another strange twist after disclosures in a federal court Wednesday that an aging Connecticut gangster lied when asked in the past whether he knew anything about the stolen paintings, the Hartford Courant reports. 

As a result, the FBI terminated its cooperation agreement with the Robert Gentile.

A polygraph administered to Gentile in the past showed that he likely lied when he denied knowing nothing about the robbery of 13 gems, including three Rembrandts and works by Manet and Degas.

A polygraph administered to Gentile in the past showed that he likely lied when he denied knowing nothing about the robbery and when he said he received none of the paintings.

While the discovery explains why the FBI has doggedly pursued Gentile for years on the robbery, investigators still don’t know what happened to the paintings.

Possible Human Remains Found at Former Home of Mobster Who Inspired ‘Goodfellas’

 

James Burke

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

FBI agents searching for evidence of a 30-year-old mob murder said they found possible human remains in a New York home once occupied by a famous gangster, the Associated Press reports.

The Queens house was once home to James Burke, a Lucchese crime family associate known as “Jimmy the Gent” and who inspired the character Jimmy Conway in the movie “Goodfellas.”

The FBI didn’t divulge details but said agents have gathered evidence that may be related to the decades-old murder.

Burke, who masterminded a nearly $6 million robbery at New York’s Kennedy Airport, died in Jail in 1996.

The home that was searched is still owned by Burke’s wife, the AP wrote.

Florida Retreat of Gangster Mom Ma Barker Up for Sale

Ma Barker/ wikipedia photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 Up for sale: Two story, lakefront Florida retreat riddled with bullets.

The suggested starting price: $1 million.

The frame house in rural Ocklawaha, about 60 miles northwest of Orlando, is where FBI agents killed legendary Ma Barker in 1935, Reuters reports.  She was the mother of some  gangsters of the Barker and was considered an accomplice to their crimes.

“It’s like walking into a time capsule in 1935. The fact that it has this extra history is a really interesting cachet,” Mark Arnold, a realtor, told Reuters.

Barker was one of the most notorious gangsters, wanted in the early 1930s for murders, kidnapping and robberies.

Mobster John Gotti: Draft Dodger? Kinda, Sorta

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

Was the late Godfather John Gotti a draft dodger? Well, kinda, sorta.

His status with the military is included in 1,580 pages of FBI files on Gotti from 1964 to 1995, archived on a CD-ROM by the website paperlessarchives.com.

Gotti was the boss of the Gambino crime family, nicknamed the “Dapper Don” because of his lavish lifestyle and manner of dress.

The files point out that Gotti was drafted in 1963 in Brooklyn, but did not appear for induction. The  FBI searched for Gotti for two years, eventually making contact on November 10, 1965, when the future crime boss appeared at the Kings County Court House for a hearing related to a grand larceny auto. Gotti told authorities he was unaware of the draft status. He reported to the selective service board the next day, but was never inducted into the armed forces due to his criminal record, the files show.

Also in the files are reports of an internal FBI administrative investigation in 1992 in which at least 140 agents were interviewed and provided sworn statements regarding leaks about John Gotti to the New York Daily News.

“I did not provide this information to anyone not entitled to receive it, including the Daily News,” one agent said, “with the possible exception of my wife. I do not recall discussing this with my wife, but I may have.”

Another investigation focused on leaks to a New York news television program, where reporter John Miller broke the story of a juror being bribed–$60,000 from Gotti himself and another $15,000 from a Gambino associate–which ultimately led to Gotti’s acquittal in the case. Miller was known to have wide net of connections in New York law enforcement and later went on to become the chief spokesman for the FBI in 2005 to 2009.

To read more click here.

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Feds Expected to Pass on Using Star Prosecution Witness From Gotti “Junior” Case

John Alite pictured in big photo/ny daily newsBy Allan Lengel

Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Using “mob turncoats” to testify in court doesn’t always work. It comes down to credibility.

Apparently, jurors weren’t buying what “mob turncoat” John Alite was selling as a star prosecution witness in the the fourth and final unsuccessful trial in 2009 against his ex-best friend, John (Junior) Gotti, son of the late Godfather John Gotti.

Alite, a convicted murderer and associate of the Gambino Crime family,  testified that the younger Gotti, who was a childhood friend,  approved multiple murders.  Apparently, his word was no good, at least in the eyes of some jurors. The case ended with a deadlock jury in December 2009, and the government decided after failing four times, not to go for a fifth trial.

Jerry Capeci, an expert on the mob who runs the website Gang Land News, reports that “Brooklyn federal prosecutors have figured out how to keep the flawed mob turncoat John Alite off the stand in a companion case to the failed prosecution of John (Junior) Gotti.”

Gang Land News reports that the feds have “rounded up a slew of better witnesses” in a multiple murder case against John Burke, a Queens gangster. One of the witnesses is expected to be Peter (Bud) Zuccaro, who was a defense witness for Gotti Junior, Gang Land News reported.

Gang Land News reported that “Burke is awaiting trial for three gangland-style slayings from 1982 to 1996, including one that Gotti allegedly ordered.”

 

FBI Arrests Philly Police Official With Aspirations to be Chief

Chief Charles Ramsey/dept. photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The FBI in all likelihood put an end to any aspirations of Philadelphia police inspector Daniel Castro becoming the department’s commissioner.

On Friday, agents arrested him at his home on charges of extortion in a scheme the Philadelphia Inquirer reported ” portrays him more like a gangster.”  Castro is the 15th Philly cop to be arrested since March 2009.

The paper reported that Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, a former Chicago police official and former head of the D.C. police department, knew the inspector was under FBI investigation.  In fact, the paper reported that last month at a press conference announcing the arrests of two officers charged with ripping off drug dealers, he remarked  that it “could get worse before it gets better.”

To read more click here.

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