The Chicago Syndicate

Monday, December 30, 2019

Mafia Spies: The Inside Story of the CIA, Gangsters, JFK, and Castro

From bestselling author and the producer of the hit cable series Masters of Sex, Thomas Maier, comes a true story of espionage and mobsters, based on the never-before-released JFK Files.

From Vegas to Miami to Havana, the shocking connections between the CIA, the mob, and Frank Sinatra’s Rat Pack—with new revelations and details. Mafia Spies is the definitive account of America’s most remarkable espionage plots ever—with CIA agents, mob hitmen, “kompromat” sex, presidential indiscretion, and James Bond-like killing devices together in a top-secret mystery full of surprise twists and deadly intrigue.

In the early 1960s, two top gangsters, Johnny Roselli and Sam Giancana, were hired by the CIA to kill Cuba’s Communist leader, Fidel Castro, only to wind up murdered themselves amidst Congressional hearings and a national debate about the JFK assassination.

Mafia Spies: The Inside Story of the CIA, Gangsters, JFK, and Castro, revolves around the outlaw friendship of these two mob buddies and their fascinating world of CIA spies, fellow Mafioso in Chicago, Cuban exile commandos in Miami, beautiful Hollywood women, famous entertainers like Frank Sinatra’s Rat Pack in Las Vegas, Castro’s own spies in Havana and his double agents hidden in Florida, J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI snooping, and the Kennedy administration’s “Get Castro” obsession in Washington.

Thomas Maier is among the first to take full advantage of the National Archives’ 2017–18 release of the long-suppressed JFK files, many of which deal with the CIA’s top secret anti-Castro operation in Florida and Cuba. With several new investigative findings, Mafia Spies is a spy exposé, murder mystery, and shocking true story that recounts America’s first foray into the assassination business, a tale with profound impact for today’s Donald Trump era. Who killed Johnny and Sam—and why wasn’t Castro assassinated despite the CIA’s many clandestine efforts?


Monday, December 23, 2019

Hells Angels and The Mafia Tied to Illegal Online Sports Betting Ring

The Canadian province of Ontario has busted a major illegal online gambling operation with links to the Hells Angels motorcycle gang.

Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) revealed details of a multi-jurisdictional takedown of a “sophisticated” illegal offline and online gambling ring involving the Hells Angels. The OPP laid a combined 228 charges against 28 suspects following a probe it called Project Hobart.

Project Hobart got underway in January 2018 following an “escalation in violence” between rival gangs in Ontario and Quebec. Michel Deabaitu-Schulde, a Hells Angel member associated with the gambling operation, was murdered this March.

The “lucrative online and traditional gaming enterprise involving members of known organized crime groups” revolved around a number of password-protected online sportsbooks bearing the names The Ultimate Sportsbook, Titan Sportsbook, Paytowin Sportsbook, Privada Sportsbook and Players Sportsbook.

Police said these sites generated revenue of around $13m for the gang in just the first half of 2019 and over $131m in the five years that police believe the betting operation was ongoing. The ring also operated a “land-based gaming house” in the Toronto suburb of Mississauga.

Police staged a series of raids last week that resulted in the seizure of nine residential properties, 21 firearms, 18 vehicles, C$1.7m in cash, C$1.2m in financial accounts and C$320k worth of gold and silver coins and bars. The accused will make appearances in Ontario Superior Court over the next month.

The gambling ring was allegedly run by Robert Barletta, Craig McIlquham and Eugenio “Gino” Reda (not to be confused with the sports broadcaster of the same name). The ring reportedly had ties to Angelo Figliomeni, who was arrested in Ontario this July during a crackdown on a group tied to local representatives of Italy’s ‘Ndrangheta mafia clan.

Barletta was previously charged for his role in Platinum Sportsbook, another Hells Angels-run Costa Rica-based credit-betting ring that the OPP and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police disrupted in 2013. While that operation resulted in stiff jail sentences for some of the principals involved, charges against Barletta were eventually withdrawn, leading to him being nicknamed the ‘Teflon Biker.’

Ontario has a provincial gambling monopoly that offers parlay sports betting both online and via retail outlets, but single-game wagering remains technically off-limits in Canada despite renewed calls to follow the US lead and legalize the activity already.


Monday, December 16, 2019

Edelman Sentenced To 34 Years In Prison For Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine, Armed Drug Trafficking, and Felon in Possession of a Firearm

Brandon Edelman, age 33, of South Bend, Indiana was sentenced before South Bend District Court Judge Robert L. Miller, Jr. for armed drug trafficking, announced U.S. Attorney Kirsch.

Mr. Edelman was sentenced to 408 months in prison followed by 3 years of supervised release.

Mr. Edelman was initially indicted in June of 2018 for possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, armed drug trafficking, and felon in possession of a firearm. On February 7, 2019, a jury returned guilty verdicts on all three counts following a two-day trial.

“A sentence of 34 years should send a strong message to others who wish to engage in similar criminal activities,” said U.S. Attorney Kirsch. “The propensity for violence increases when narcotics are involved. Edleman further endangered lives by evading law enforcement with a high speed chase and having his passenger throw a loaded firearm out a window during that chase.  These violent acts will not be tolerated. My Office and our law enforcement partners will continue to investigate and prosecute dangerous individuals like Mr. Edleman.”

According to documents in this case, in April of 2018, South Bend Police observed Mr. Edelman driving a stolen truck. When police attempted to investigate, Mr. Edelman drove off at an extremely high speed. The vehicle pursuit lasted approximately 13 minutes, ending only when the vehicle was disabled; Mr. Edelman then ran from police. Mr. Edelman subsequently admitted to having his accomplice, during the vehicle pursuit, throw $20,000 cash, a loaded handgun, and ¼ pound of methamphetamine out the window as those items were incriminating. Police were able to recover the handgun. Mr. Edelman had previously been convicted of five felonies and eight misdemeanor offenses. He was on probation when he committed the April 2018 federal crimes.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Associates of DeCavalcante Crime Family Charged in Scheme to Distribute Cocaine, Gun Possession

Two associate members of the DeCavalcante crime family were charged with possessing cocaine with the intent to distribute; one defendant was also charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.

Mario Galli III, 27, and Jason Vella, 37, both of Toms River, New Jersey, are each charged by complaint with one count of possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Galli is also charged with one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and one count of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

On Sept. 19, 2019, investigators from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office executed search warrants on each of the defendants’ residences and recovered in excess of 150 grams of cocaine and drug paraphernalia, including digital scales, glassine envelopes, a money counter, baking soda, grinders, and $2,295 in cash. Also recovered from Galli’s residence was a FEG 9mm Model PGK-9HP gun loaded with 12 rounds of ammunition. At the time, Galli was on supervised release from a 2016 federal conviction for conspiracy to distribute in excess of 500 grams of cocaine.

The charge of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The count of being a felon in possession of a firearm carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The count of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, which must be served consecutively to any sentence on the drug count and a $250,000 fine.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited the members of the FBI’s Organized Crime Task Force under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie in Newark; and investigators from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer, with the investigation leading to the charges.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Mafia Summit: J. Edgar Hoover, the Kennedy Brothers, and the Meeting That Unmasked the Mob

Mafia Summit: J. Edgar Hoover, the Kennedy Brothers, and the Meeting That Unmasked the Mob, is the true story of how a small-town lawman in upstate New York busted a Cosa Nostra conference in 1957, exposing the Mafia to America

In a small village in upstate New York, mob bosses from all over the country—Vito Genovese, Carlo Gambino, Joe Bonanno, Joe Profaci, Cuba boss Santo Trafficante, and future Gambino boss Paul Castellano—were nabbed by Sergeant Edgar D. Croswell as they gathered to sort out a bloody war of succession.

For years, FBI director J. Edgar Hoover had adamantly denied the existence of the Mafia, but young Robert Kennedy immediately recognized the shattering importance of the Appalachian summit. As attorney general when his brother JFK became president, Bobby embarked on a campaign to break the spine of the mob, engaging in a furious turf battle with the powerful Hoover.

Detailing mob killings, the early days of the heroin trade, and the crusade to loosen the hold of organized crime, fans of Gus Russo and Luc Sante will find themselves captured by this momentous story. Reavill scintillatingly recounts the beginning of the end for the Mafia in America and how it began with a good man in the right place at the right time.


Al Capone's Vault

Flash Mafia Book Sales!

New York Crime Families

Crime Family Index