The Chicago Syndicate

Friday, October 25, 2019

Member of #WhiteSupremacy Group, Vanguard America, Arrested on Federal Charges

United States Attorney William M. McSwain announced that Fred Arena, 41, of Salem, New Jersey was arrested and charged by Indictment with making false statements to government agents. The Indictment alleges that the defendant, who is an employee at the Philadelphia Navy Yard and as such is required to obtain a security clearance, lied to obtain the clearance. He also subsequently lied to federal investigators who asked him about his answers to questions on the security clearance paperwork.

According to the Indictment, on January 10, 2019, Arena completed the standard Form SF-86 to obtain a security clearance for his employment. On that form, he was required to disclose whether he had ever been a member of an organization that used, or advocated the use of, force or violence to prevent others from exercising their constitutional rights. He falsely answered that he had not. In fact, Arena was an avowed member of Vanguard America, a white supremacist group that fits that description. On the same application, Arena was asked whether he had property repossessed within the past seven years. He falsely answered that he had not. In fact, Arena had previously defaulted on a car loan, and his car was repossessed within the seven year window.

“Lying on federal security clearance forms and to government agents will land you in big trouble,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain. “Further, the nature of the defendant’s alleged lies – attempting to conceal his affiliation with a white supremacist group in order to obtain federal employment – is extremely disturbing. I want to thank all of our law enforcement partners in New Jersey and Pennsylvania for their excellent work on this investigation.”

“Members of groups that sponsor hate and bias-motivated violence have no place in government employment,” said U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey Craig Carpenito. “Knowing this, the defendant in this case, a New Jersey resident, lied to conceal his membership in a white supremacist organization. We are proud to join our colleagues from the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in prosecuting him for those lies.”

“Membership in a group espousing extremist ideology is not itself illegal — but lying to the FBI is,” said Michael T. Harpster, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI's Philadelphia Division. “If the people we interview feel they can deceive us with impunity, critical investigations will be compromised, threatening the very integrity of the justice system. Arena lied about his history in order to obtain a security clearance he should not have had, and he lied to federal agents questioning him. These charges are the consequences of his actions.”

If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of 25 years’ imprisonment, three years’ supervised release, and a $1,250,000 fine.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Former Chicago Mob Boss Joey ‘The Clown’ Lombardo Dies in Federal Prison

Former Chicago mob boss Joey "The Clown" Lombardo died Saturday at a maximum security prison in Colorado.

Lombardo was serving life for his conviction in the 2007 Family Secrets case that pulled back the curtain on the Chicago Outfit.

He was the leader of the organized crime family and was behind the 1974 murder of government witness Daniel Seifert, who was hunted down and shot by masked gunman in a union pension fraud case.

Lombardo continued saying he was innocent, saying the government presented no evidence of his involvement in organized crime after serving time for a 1983 skimming and bribery conviction, according to the Chicago Tribune.

In the summer of 2007, then Chicago Tribune courts reporter Jeff Coen had a front row seat for one of the most historic mob trials in Chicago history.



Coen said Lombardo was known for keeping a sense of humor about him. He was often described as a colorful character. “He’s famous for leaving court one time and cutting the paper, so his eyes could be seen, Coen said. “He’s seen looking through the paper as he’s leaving."

Coen later wrote the book “Family Secrets: The Case That Crippled the Chicago Mob."

Lombardo was 90 years old.


Operators of KSO MetalFab Charged with Illegally Hiring Undocumented Workers #IllegalAliens

The operators of a suburban Chicago manufacturing company have been charged in federal court with knowingly hiring and harboring undocumented workers.

DORA KUZELKA, 81, of Elgin, KENNETH KUZELKA, 62, of Chicago, KARI KUZELKA, 56, of Elgin, and KEITH KUZELKA, 58, of Elgin, are charged with one count of knowingly harboring an illegal alien and one count of knowingly engaging in a pattern or practice of hiring illegal aliens.

The Kuzelkas knowingly hired at least 18 undocumented workers at KSO MetalFab Inc., a sheet metal fabrication company in Streamwood, Ill., according to a criminal complaint and affidavit filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago. Keith Kuzelka left the company last year, while the three other Kuzelkas continue to serve in executive management positions, the complaint states.

Dora Kuzelka, Kenneth Kuzelka and Kari Kuzelka were arrested, while Keith Kuzelka self-surrendered to authorities. All four defendants made initial appearances in federal court in Chicago and were ordered released on recognizance bonds. U.S. Magistrate Judge Sheila M. Finnegan scheduled status hearings for Oct. 29, 2019.

The complaint and arrests were announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and James M. Gibbons, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). The U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Social Security Administration provided valuable assistance.  The government is represented by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Christine Young and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Christopher Parente and Michelle Petersen.

According to the complaint, HSI’s Chicago office conducted a civil audit of KSO MetalFab in 2017 and determined that 36 of the company’s 67 employees were suspected of using fraudulent work authorization documents to verify their eligibility for employment. HSI served the company with a written notice of the suspected violations, and the company responded by attesting that it had terminated all 36 of the identified employees. KSO MetalFab later re-hired at least 18 of the previously terminated workers by utilizing a staffing agency, the complaint states. KSO MetalFab instructed the workers to go to the staffing agency so that they could return to the company after the audit, the charges allege. Many of the workers used the same names that they previously used before the audit, the complaint states.

Knowingly harboring an illegal alien carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison, while knowingly engaging in a pattern or practice of hiring illegal aliens is punishable by up to six months in prison. If convicted, the Court must impose reasonable sentences under federal statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

The Sopranos Family Cookbook: As Compiled by Artie Bucco #NationalPastaDay

Nuovo Vesuvio. The "family" restaurant, redefined. Home to the finest in Napolitan' cuisine and Essex County's best kept secret. Now Artie Bucco, la cucina's master chef and your personal host, invites you to a special feast...with a little help from his friends, The Sopranos Family Cookbook: As Compiled by Artie Bucco. From arancini to zabaglione, from baccala to Quail Sinatra-style, Artie Bucco and his guests, the Sopranos and their associates, offer food lovers one hundred Avellinese-style recipes and valuable preparation tips. But that's not all!

Artie also brings you a cornucopia of precious Sopranos artifacts that includes photos from the old country; the first Bucco's Vesuvio's menu from 1926; AJ's school essay on "Why I Like Food"; Bobby Bacala's style tips for big eaters, and much, much more.

So share the big table with:

  • Tony Soprano, waste management executive "Most people soak a bagful of discount briquettes with lighter fluid and cook a pork chop until it's shoe leather and think they're Wolfgang Puck." Enjoy his tender Grilled Sausages sizzling with fennel or cheese. Warning: Piercing the skin is a fire hazard. 
  • Corrado "Junior" Soprano, Tony's uncle "Mama always cooked. No one died of too much cholesterol or some such crap." Savor his Pasta Fazool, a toothsome marriage of cannellini beans and ditalini pasta, or Giambott', a grand-operatic vegetable medley. 
  • Carmela Soprano, Tony's wife "If someone were sick, my inclination would be to send over a pastina and ricotta. It's healing food." Try her Baked Ziti, sinfully enriched with three cheeses, and her earthy 'Shcarole with Garlic. 
  • Peter Paul "Paulie Walnuts" Gualtieri, associate of Tony Soprano "I have heard that Eskimos have fifty words for snow. We have five hundred words for food." Sink your teeth into his Eggs in Purgatory-eight eggs, bubbling tomato sauce, and an experience that's pure heaven. 

As Artie says, "Enjoy, with a thousand meals and a thousand laughs. Buon' appetito!"

The Sopranos Family Cookbook: As Compiled by Artie Bucco.

Tonight, @BridgettMDavis to Discuss "The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother's Life in the Detroit Numbers" on Crime Beat Radio

Bridgett Davis, author of "The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother's Life in the Detroit Numbers" will appear tonight on Crime Beat Radio at 8:00 PM EST.

Crime Beat is a weekly hour-long radio program that airs every Thursday at 8 p.m. EST. Crime Beat presents fascinating topics that bring listeners closer to the dynamic underbelly of the world of crime. Guests have included ex-mobsters, undercover law enforcement agents, sports officials, informants, prisoners, drug dealers and investigative journalists, who have provided insights and fresh information about the world’s most fascinating subject: crime.


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