The Chicago Syndicate: Matthew Madonna

Showing posts with label Matthew Madonna. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Matthew Madonna. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Alleged Mafia Soldier, Christopher Londonio, Charged With Attempting To Escape From Federal Pretrial Detention Facility

Joon H. Kim, the Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, William F. Sweeney Jr., Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), and James P. O’Neill, Commissioner of the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”) announced the filing of a Superseding Indictment charging CHRISTOPHER LONDONIO with attempting to escape from the Metropolitan Detention Center (“MDC”), in Brooklyn.

LONDONIO has been detained at the MDC since February 2017 in connection with murder and racketeering charges pending in White Plains federal court.  The Superseding Indictment re-alleges previously filed charges against LONDONIO and 18 other members and associates of the Luchese Family of La Cosa Nostra, who are charged with racketeering, murder, narcotics offenses, and firearms offenses.  LONDONIO will be arraigned on the new charge at the next pretrial conference, which is currently scheduled for September 20, 2017.  The case is assigned to United States District Judge Cathy Seibel.

Acting U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim said:  “Already detained on racketeering and murder charges, Luchese soldier Christopher Londonio, allegedly hatched a scheme to break out of federal prison with a hacksaw blade and a rope made from tied-up bedsheets. Although sounding like a script for a made-for-tv movie, the charges allege yet another serious federal crime against Londonio. As alleged, with this latest chapter in his years-long life in the mob, Londonio adds to the string of crimes he must now face, in a criminal justice system he was desperately seeking to escape.”

FBI Assistant Director William F. Sweeney Jr. said:  “Someone facing federal charges of murder, extortion, racketeering, and a litany of other crimes may feel a certain desperation to attempt breaking out of jail to avoid justice.  However, the outlandish choice of dental floss, and even allegedly asking a priest to assist in the escape defies comprehension.  The attempts didn't work, and now the subject in this case faces even more charges for his alleged criminal behavior.”

According to the allegations in the Superseding Indictment[1] and other documents in the public record:

In or about June 2017, LONDONIO and another detainee concocted a plan to escape from the MDC.  In furtherance of the plan, LONDONIO used dental floss as a cutting tool to tamper with a window in the facility.  He also planned to solicit a priest to smuggle a saw blade into the facility, and secretly stockpiled a large number of sheets and blankets, intending to use them as a rope to aid in his escape.  The plan was foiled after a fellow detainee reported the escape plan to the authorities.

La Cosa Nostra or “the Mafia” is a criminal organization composed of leaders, members, and associates who work together and coordinate to engage in a multitude of criminal activities.  In addition to the attempted escape charge, the Superseding Indictment alleges that from at least in or about 2000 up to and including in or about 2017, MATTHEW MADONNA, STEVEN CREA, Sr., a/k/a “Wonder Boy,” JOSEPH DINAPOLI, STEVEN CREA, Jr., DOMINIC TRUSCELLO, JOHN CASTELUCCI, a/k/a “Big John,” TINDARO CORSO, a/k/a “Tino,” JOSEPH VENICE, JAMES MAFFUCCI, a/k/a “Jimmy the Jew,” JOSEPH DATELLO, a/k/a “Big Joe,” a/k/a “Joey Glasses,” PAUL CASSANO, a/k/a “Paulie Roast Beef,” CHRISTOPHER LONDONIO, TERRENCE CALDWELL, a/k/a “T,” VINCENT BRUNO, BRIAN VAUGHAN, CARMINE GARCIA, a/k/a “Spanish Carmine,” RICHARD O’CONNOR, ROBERT CAMILLI, and JOHN INCATASCIATO, along with other members and associates of La Cosa Nostra, committed a wide array of crimes in connection with their association with the mafia, including murder, attempted murder, assault, robbery, extortion, gambling, narcotics trafficking, witness tampering, fraud, money laundering, and trafficking in contraband cigarettes.

LONDONIO, 43, is a resident of Hartsdale, New York.  The attempted escape charge, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 751(a), carries a maximum prison term of five years.

Friday, June 19, 2015

6 More Members of Lucchese Crime Family Plead Guilty

Six members of the New York-based Lucchese crime family, including a ruling boss in New York and a top captain in New Jersey, have pleaded guilty to running a multi-billion-dollar gambling enterprise built upon extortion and violence, state authorities said Thursday.

The men were indicted in 2010 after an investigation uncovered the gambling ring, which, according to records, transacted an estimated $2.2 billion in wagers, primarily on sporting events, during a 15-month period. The operation allegedly received and processed the wagers using password-protected websites and a Costa Rican "wire room."

Authorities said the investigation, led by the state Division of Criminal Justice, also revealed a scheme in which a former New Jersey corrections officer and a high-ranking member of the Nine Trey Gangsters set of the Bloods street gang entered into an alliance with the Lucchese family to smuggle drugs and pre-paid cell phones into East Jersey State Prison.

The alleged gangster, Edwin Spears, who was an inmate, formed the alliance in concert with the former officer, Michael Bruinton, authorities said. Charges are pending against them.

Among those who pleaded guilty Wednesday were Ralph V. Perna, 69, of East Hanover, who oversaw the crime family's operations in New Jersey, as well as his two of his sons: Joseph Perna, 45, of Wyckoff, and John Perna, 38, of West Caldwell, authorities said.

Under the plea deal, prosecutors will recommend eight years in prison for Ralph Perna and 10 years in prison for his two sons. Charges against a third son, Ralph M. Perna, 43, of West Caldwell, are pending, authorities said.

Also pleading guilty were Martin Taccetta, 64, formerly of East Hanover and a former New Jersey underboss, who is already serving a life sentence as a result of a state prosecution in the 1990s; John Mangrella, 72, of Clifton, a senior member of the family; and Matthew Madonna, 80, of Seldon, N.Y., a member of the three-man ruling panel of the family.

Charges are pending against a second alleged ruling member, Joseph DiNapoli, 79, of Scarsdale, N.Y., authorities said. Under the plea deal, prosecutors will recommend five years in prison for Madonna, and eight years for Mangrella and Taccetta.

Thanks to Christopher Baxter.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Lucchese Crime Family Partners with The Bloods Street Gang

State authorities on Tuesday broke up what Attorney General Anne Milgram said was an “alarming alliance” between the Luchese crime family and the Bloods street gang to supply drugs and cellphones to gang members inside a New Jersey prison. Paul Fredrick MenStyle

Two members of the Luchese family connected to the prison scheme, Ms. Milgram said, were also involved in a sports gambling ring. The gambling operation took in $2.2 billion in bets over 15 months, mainly through the Internet, law enforcement officials say, and relied on violence and extortion to collect debts.

All told, the authorities charged 32 people, 27 from New Jersey and 5 from New York, in connection with the prison and gambling operations, on charges ranging from racketeering and money laundering to conspiracy to distribute heroin and conspiracy to commit aggravated assault.

Among those arrested were three high-ranking members of the Luchese organization and a New Jersey prison guard who is accused of acting as the conduit for the drugs and cellphones.

“With today’s arrests and charges, we have disrupted the highest-echelon organized crime family in both New York and New Jersey,” Ms. Milgram said at a news conference.

During the yearlong investigation, Ms. Milgram worked with her former boss, Robert M. Morgenthau, the Manhattan district attorney, and other law enforcement agencies.

New York’s five organized crime families have long built alliances with nontraditional organized crime groups in the city, including Russians, Cubans and Asians. Nationwide, organized crime groups are also no stranger to running criminal operations inside prisons. But in New Jersey, which has seen a rapid growth in gang activity in the cities and the suburbs, law enforcement officials said, the prison scheme provided the first evidence of an organized crime family from New York working with the Bloods street gang, one of the state’s largest. Moreover, Ms. Milgram said, the potential for more cooperation was great, given their shared interests in “violence, illegal drugs and quick profits.”

“What we have here in this case is really the realization of what we feared: connecting old-school organized crime, the Mafia, with new-school organized crime, gangs,” Ms. Milgram said. “We’ve heard anecdotes about overlap, but this is the first time we’ve had a direct link between the two organizations.”

As part of what they called Operation Heat, investigators executed search warrants at 10 locations in New Jersey and 2 in New York, Ms. Milgram said. They seized two shotguns, one handgun, one hand grenade, 2,000 OxyContin-grade pills and $200,000 in cash. State officials also obtained court orders to take possession of 7 homes and 13 luxury cars.

Ms. Milgram, together with Gregory A. Paw, director of the state’s Division of Criminal Justice, made the announcement at the West Orange Armory, where the New Jersey suspects were processed on Tuesday. The suspects’ first court appearances were expected in a Morris County courtroom on Wednesday.

According to law enforcement officials, the prison scheme revolved around a prisoner, Edwin B. Spears, 33, who has served time for a variety of offenses since 2002.

Officials said that Mr. Spears, who is reputed to be a “five-star general” in the Nine Trey Gangsters faction of the Bloods, cooperated with two Luchese members — Joseph M. Perna and Michael A. Cetta — to smuggle heroin, cocaine, marijuana and prepaid cellphones into East Jersey State Prison in Woodbridge.

They enlisted the help of Michael T. Bruinton, a senior prison guard, by offering him $500 each time he allowed smuggled goods to pass through, Ms. Milgram said. Mr. Bruinton has worked in corrections since 1987, always at the same prison, said Danielle Hunter, a spokeswoman for the Department of Corrections.

Mr. Perna and Mr. Cetta are suspected of having given money to Mr. Spears’s brother, Dwayne E. Spears, to buy drugs and phones. Dwayne Spears then passed the goods to Mr. Bruinton, officials said, and they were given to inmates who had placed orders with Edwin Spears.

As of Tuesday night, Mr. Bruinton was one of five suspects still at large. “He wasn’t home or at work,” said Peter Aseltine, a spokesman for Ms. Milgram. Attempts to reach him for comment on Tuesday were unsuccessful.

The gambling operation was more conventional. Law enforcement officials said it involved agents who brought in bets from hundreds or even thousands of gamblers who bet on, among other things, basketball, football, greyhound races and the lottery.

The gambling operation used what officials called a wire room in Costa Rica, where bets were taken over the Internet or a toll-free phone line, and tabulated.
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The gambling operators in the metropolitan area made tribute payments to two of the Luchese family’s top bosses in New York, Joseph DiNapoli, of Scarsdale, and Matthew Madonna, of Selden, both 72, according to Ms. Milgram. Sometimes, debtors were forced to take loans at annual interest rates exceeding 200 percent. Some debtors were even forced to refinance their homes.

The New Jersey group was said to have been led by Ralph V. Perna, of East Hanover, who officials said was named top capo for the New Jersey division of the Luchese family this year. Three of his sons, including Joseph, and his daughter-in-law, were also charged in the investigation.

It is not clear whether the Bloods were involved with the gambling operation. But officials said the accusation that they joined forces with the Mafia was surprising but not unexpected.

According to Marc Agnifilo, the former head of the gang unit in the United States attorney’s office in New Jersey, the cultural differences between the two groups would appear to be too great to allow for a long-term alliance.

Mafia crews try to run their enterprises quietly, Mr. Agnifilo said, while street gangs like the Bloods and Crips are prone to ostentatious shows of raw power. “No self-respecting mobster would want anything to do with the Bloods or Crips because those gangs are the antithesis of the Mafia,” he said. “The mob is concerned with making money over the long haul, trying to appear respectable. But the Bloods are concerned with projecting their status, so they’re all, ‘I’m going to shoot up the block and wear a red bandanna.’”

Yet Mr. Agnifilo said that when he had prosecuted both organized crime and street gang cases between 1998 and 2003, he frequently heard members of the Bloods speak of Mafia members and customs with admiration. “The Blood guys love mobsters because they’re the old-school gangsters,” he said. “A lot of my Mafia informants in prison would complain that they couldn’t get away from the Bloods’ always following them and fawning over them.”

Thanks to David W. Chen and David Kocienwski

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