Saturday, July 28, 2007

Undertaker Testifies at Mob Trial

Friends of ours: William "Butchie" Petrocelli

As both a gun dealer and an undertaker, Ernie Severino was able to serve the Chicago mob in many ways. Now he's helping the feds.

The 60-year-old Severino testified in the Family Secrets trial of five alleged mobsters. They're accused of taking part in a racketeering conspiracy that included illegal gambling, extortion, loan sharking and 18 murders. One of the murder victims was Butchie Petrocelli, the leader of the so-called "Wild Bunch."

Severino testified yesterday that back in 1980, he supplied Petrocelli with 100 guns. When other mobsters pressed Severino to hand over some items he'd been keeping for Petrocelli, Severino balked, fearing Petrocelli would come back and get him. On the stand yesterday, Severino said they answered: "He's not coming back." Petrocelli turned up dead.

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