Tuesday, August 5, 2008
John A. Gotti has been charged with conspiracy for his role in a sprawling cocaine trafficking operation and in three mob-related killings in 1980s and ’90s, the United States attorney’s office in Tampa, Fla., announced on Tuesday.
Mr. Gotti, 44, who headed the Gambino crime family for a time, was arrested at his home in Oyster Bay, N.Y., early Tuesday morning on the federal racketeering and murder conspiracy charges, and was expected to be arraigned in Manhattan federal court.
Five others suspects were also charged in the wide-ranging racketeering indictments, Assistant United States Attorney Robert O’Neill said at a news conference in Tampa. He said all five — identified as John A. Burke, James V. Cadicamo, David D’Arpino, Michael D. Finnerty, and Guy T. Peden — were members of the Gambino organization.
Mr. O’Neill said the alleged criminal acts involved “the Gambino crime family reaching out to the Tampa Bay area,” and that the investigation had ranged widely, including work by federal investigators in New York, New Jersey, Miami and Philadelphia as well as Tampa.
If convicted, Mr. Gotti and the five others could be sentenced to life in prison.
Mr. Gotti has been prosecuted four times before on charges related to organized crime; he pleaded guilty in the first case but contested the later charges, resulting in three mistrials.
In New York, a lawyer for Mr. Gotti, Seth Ginsberg, said of the latest charges, “We’re confident that there is no strength to the allegations and that he will prevail once again.”
But Randy M. Mastro, a former deputy mayor under Rudolph Giuliani, said: “They’re old crimes, but the defense he used the last time — that he resigned from the mob — doesn’t work in this case. There’s no statute of limitations on murder.”
Mr. Ginsberg said that his client would probably be transported to Tampa quickly for arraignment.
Read full article here. [Brooks Holland]