Organized Crime

Oct 15, 2009
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James Capone Imagine having the most notorious gangster in U.S. history for a brother. James, the oldest of the seven Capone brothers, did everything he could, including changing his name and becoming a Prohibition agent, to distance himself. He didn't quite make it. The...
Oct 15, 2009
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Wilfred "Willie Boy" Johnson For 15 years "Willie Boy" Johnson ratted out his mentor John Gotti and other major New York crime family figures to save his own skin and got away with it. And then an assistant U.S. attorney, in a turf battle with the FBI, deliberately blew his...
Oct 14, 2009
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Anthony D'Andrea The political feud between Anthony D'Andrea, the head of Unione Siciliana, and John Powers, the entrenched alderman of Chicago's 19th Ward, was a fight to the death. by Allan May The Unione Siciliana was as mysterious an organization as the Mafia, the...
Oct 14, 2009
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Mike Merlo As president of Unione Siciliana, Mike Merlo was able to keep the peace among Chicago's various underworld factions during the early years of Prohibition. When he died of cancer in 1924, Al Capone set his sights on taking over control of the Unione and its...
Oct 14, 2009
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Antonio "Tony" Lombardo Being the president of Chicago's Unione Siciliana was a ticket to the morgue, but that didn't stop Tony Lombardo, Capone's man, and Joe Aiello from wanting that job more than any other. by Allan May With the death of Samoots Amatuna in November,...
Oct 14, 2009
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Joseph Aiello Joseph Aiello was Al Capone's most bitter rival. Each wanted control of Chicago's Unione Siciliana and the enormous profits its "alky cookers" generated during Prohibition. The St. Valentine's Day Massacre, plus the rise and fall of Aiello play out in this...
Oct 14, 2009
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Charles "Vannie" Higgins and William Bailey Prohibition spawned greed, and greed in turn spawned mayhem and murder throughout the underworld. Bootlegger Vannie Higgins ran booze by seaplane, speedboat, a fleet of trucks and by taxi to his Brooklyn customers. When he...
Oct 14, 2009
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Herbert Blitzstein At 300 pounds, Chicago mobster Herbert Blitzstein looked like a heart attack waiting to happen. Instead it was three bullets to his head that stopped his heart. As his profits from loan sharking and auto insurance fraud were piling up in Las Vegas, crime...
Oct 14, 2009
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Raymond Salvatore Loreda Patriarca The 1984 death of Raymond Salvatore Loreda Patriarca – who had ruled the well-oiled New England Crime Family from Providence for the last 30 years – sent Mafia operations in Boston into a bloody and prolonged free fall.  by Allan...
Oct 14, 2009
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Frank McErlane From 1923 through 1930 the beer wars raged in Chicago. Frank McErlane – the gangster the Illinois Crime Survey called "the most brutal gunman who ever pulled a trigger in Chicago" – stood at the center of this bloody Prohibition Era turf battle. by Allan May...

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