The Chicago Syndicate: Mob Connected to Multi-State Theft Ring?

Montana West World

Montana West World

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Mob Connected to Multi-State Theft Ring?

There were new details Wednesday about possible mob connections to a multi-state theft ring broken up by Pennsylvania State Police.

Fox 29's Dave Schratwieser reports one of the defendants offered to wear a wire against the local mob and name names -- some very familiar names.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett mentioned possible mob connections to the theft ring. But now court documents and mob experts gave Fox 29 News an inside look at what those connections might be and where they might lead.

Authorities were tight-lipped about possible mob connections during Tuesday's takedown of an interstate theft ring that victimized area golfers, but they didn't deny a potential link. "There's a potential organized crime component, but we can't go into any great detail at this point on that," Corbett said.

The ring allegedly stole credit cards from golfers' cars at local country clubs to finance a $100,000 high-end shopping spree. Troopers wouldn't get specific, but court documents obtained by Fox 29 say accused ringleader Michael Pacitti offered to take troopers on a guided tour of the local mob.

"You've got an individual who was willing to give up some information, wear a wire, talk about organized crime, talk about drug dealing, talk about robberies," Inquirer mob reporter George Anastasia said.

Pacitti told troopers he would "do whatever's necessary" to stay out of jail. He promised to name names, but sources said he never mentioned mob boss Joe Ligambi or his top lieutenants. "It's intriguing because it's just another part of a big pot that's bubbling here," Anastasia said.

According to the court documents, after Pacitti offered to wear a wire against the mob in Philadelphia, he changed his mind, but then offered to give troopers information about one of his co-defendants and his ties to a well-known mobster under investigation across the bridge, in New Jersey.

That mobster was Nicky Scarfo Jr., the target of a wide-sweeping FBI probe. Pacitti said he could connect theft ring suspect Todd Stark to Scarfo. Starks' name already surfaced in that case and sources said he could face federal charges.

"This is all part of an ongoing investigation, an ongoing game, and these guys are caught in the middle of it," Anastasia said.

Sources said Pacitti's documented, but unsuccessful offer to help troopers paints him into a corner with both the mob and investigators. It's still unclear how much he really knows.

Stark on the other hand could be feeling the heat. State police said he and his co-defendants remain behind bars on $50,000 bail.

Thanks to Fox 29

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