History UsefulNotes / TheMafia

21st Apr '18 8:45:00 PM Njein
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The Mafia solicits specific people for membership — one cannot just choose to join up. Also, in order to become a made man, the inductee had to be a male of full Italian descent (though this restriction has been loosened over time, some Mafia families are more restrictive of whom they want to bring in than others). An associate of a crime family who was in the police force or attended a police academy can never become an official member, thought it has oftentimes been flouted for corrupt cops.

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The Mafia solicits specific people for membership — one cannot just choose to join up. Also, in order to become a made man, the inductee had to be a male of full Italian descent (though descent; though this restriction has been loosened over time, some Mafia families are more restrictive of whom they want to bring in than others).others. An associate of a crime family who was in the police force or attended a police academy can never become an official member, thought it has oftentimes been flouted for corrupt cops.



Made men are the only ones who can rise through the ranks of the Mafia, from soldier to capo, consigliere, underboss, and boss. There is another obstacle — all potential inductees have to be considered ''and'' approved by the Mafia Commission. During the Castellammarese War, Mafia families would often recruit new members in bulk; as they could not be recognized by the other families, they easily approached the rival capos and [[DeadlyEuphemism rubbed them out]]. To put an end to this, all families are now required to give a list of prospective members to the Commission. It's circulated among the other families and eliminates the risk of not being recognized, and also gave the opportunity of removing any inductee which some other family had a problem with.

Plus, a cap on each family's size and roster was imposed as a way to prevent one family from becoming too large via unauthorized expansions. For example, the Genovese and Gambino families each are allowed to have around 450 made men, while the Colombo family has a max size of around 200 made men, and the Luccheses and Bonnanos each have a max size of around 150 made men. These are theoretical limits that are seldom, if ever, reached in modern days; there simply aren't enough rackets to allow a comfortable living for 1400 made men in the city of New York, nor are there enough associates with the necessary qualities for membership.

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Made men are the only ones who can rise through the ranks of the Mafia, from soldier to capo, consigliere, underboss, and boss. There is another obstacle — all potential inductees have to be considered ''and'' approved by the Mafia Commission. During the Castellammarese War, Mafia families would often recruit new members in bulk; as they could not be recognized by the other families, they easily approached the rival capos and [[DeadlyEuphemism rubbed them out]]. To put an end to this, all families are now required to give a list of prospective members to the Commission. It's circulated among the other families and eliminates the risk of not being recognized, and also gave the opportunity of removing any inductee which some other family had a problem with.

Plus, a cap on each family's size and roster was imposed by the Commission as a way to prevent one family from becoming too large or recruiting in bulk via unauthorized expansions. For example, the Genovese and Gambino families each are allowed to have around 450 made men, while the Colombo family has Bonannos have a max size of around 200 250 made men, and the Luccheses Chicago Outfit, the Luccheses, and Bonnanos the Colombos each have a max size of around 150 200 made men. Other families, such as Detroit, Philly, New Jersey, Buffalo, and Boston have a variable range of 50 to 100 made men, depending on the family's proximity to New York, the amount of rackets, the pool of associates to draw from, and the family's significance. These are theoretical limits that are seldom, if ever, reached in modern days; there simply aren't enough rackets to allow a comfortable living for 1400 1500 made men in the city of New York, nor are there enough associates with the necessary qualities for membership.



* A potential inductee has to do a contract killing, also a change in previous policy. Prior to the Donnie Brasco scandal, only one had to be part of a murder, such as driving the getaway car. The killing proves that the inductee is fully dedicated in joining the Mafia, knows the risks and penalties involved if he gets out of line, and most importantly, it confirms he is ''NOT'' an undercover cop.
* The new member must have two sponsors, and they must have known him for some time. The sponsors know the associate very well and vouch for his street cred.
* Names of proposed made men, and the deceased ones they will replace, must be sent to the other families, who have some time to lodge an objection — for example, the candidate is an informer or the candidate works for another family.

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* A potential inductee has to do a contract killing, also a change in previous policy. Prior to the Donnie Brasco scandal, only one had to be part of a murder, such as driving the getaway car. The killing proves that the inductee is fully dedicated in joining the Mafia, knows the risks and penalties involved if he gets out of line, and most importantly, it confirms he is ''NOT'' '''NOT''' an undercover cop.
* The new member must have at least two sponsors, and they must have known him personally for some time. The sponsors know the associate very well and vouch for his street cred.
* Names of proposed made men, and the deceased ones they will replace, must be sent to the other families, who have some time to lodge an objection — for example, the candidate is an informer or the candidate works they work for another family.



* An associate who was in the police force, attended a police academy, or served as a corrections officer cannot become a made member of the Mafia.

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* Mafia families cannot recruit in bulk or "open the books" without prior authorization from the Commission.
* An associate who was in the police force, attended a police academy, or served as a corrections or police officer cannot become a made member of the Mafia.be officially made.



* Angelo Bruno's consigliere Antonio Caponigro was brutally beaten up and killed by Vincent Gigante's crew in 1980 for killing his own boss without the Mafia Commission's approval. Dollar bills were stuffed in his mouth and anus as a sign that he was too greedy. Frank Sindone, John Simone, and Caponigro's brother-in-law Alfred Salerno also met similar fates.
* Dominick "Sonny Black" Napolitano's hands were chopped off because he (albeit unknowingly) introduced undercover FBI agent Joe "Donnie Brasco" Pistone to other wiseguys. As a warning, mobsters must not be seen shaking hands with cops. Similarly, Anthony Mirra, the mobster who introduced Pistone to Benjamin Ruggiero and Sonny Black, was shot dead.
* A dead canary was stuffed into Lucchese crime family soldier Bruno Facciolo's corpse as a sign that he was an informant, when in reality, ''he wasn't''.

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* Angelo Bruno's consigliere Antonio Caponigro was brutally beaten up and killed by Vincent Gigante's crew in 1980 for killing his own boss without the Mafia Commission's Commission approval. Dollar bills were stuffed in his mouth and anus as a sign that he was too greedy. Frank Sindone, John Simone, and Caponigro's brother-in-law Alfred Salerno also met similar fates.
* Dominick "Sonny Black" Napolitano's hands were chopped off because he (albeit unknowingly) he, albeit unknowingly, introduced undercover FBI agent Joe "Donnie Brasco" Pistone to other wiseguys. As a warning, mobsters must not be seen shaking hands with cops. Similarly, Anthony Mirra, the mobster who introduced Pistone to [[Film/DonnieBrasco Benjamin Ruggiero "Lefty Guns" Ruggiero]] and Sonny Black, was shot dead.
dead in his car.
* A dead canary was stuffed into Lucchese crime family soldier mobster Bruno Facciolo's corpse as a sign that he was an informant, when in reality, ''he wasn't''.



* Johnny Roselli's decomposing body was found in a 55-gallon oil drum floating in Dumfoundling Bay near Miami. Roselli had been strangled and shot, and his legs were sawn off. This may have been done because Roselli had revealed too much about the Kennedy assassination and Castro murder plots during his Senate testimony.

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* Johnny Roselli's decomposing body was found in a 55-gallon oil drum floating in Dumfoundling Bay near Miami. Roselli had been strangled and shot, and his legs were sawn off. This may have been done because Roselli had revealed too much about the Kennedy assassination UsefulNotes/JohnFKennedy and Castro UsefulNotes/FidelCastro murder plots during his Senate testimony.



The Mafia is structured in a way so the higher-ups cannot be traced back to a single crime, allowing them to pass orders down the chain of command, while the grunts kick in a piece of whatever they earned to their capos and so on. This chain of command was introduced by Sal Maranzano in 1931, as a way to structure the mob along the Roman legions and to maintain order after the Castellammarese War, while the Commission was established by Luciano, who preferred to have a council of bosses governing the mob instead of a Mafia overlord ruling over them and demanding for tribute from other bosses, but retained the structure Maranzano established.

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The Mafia is structured in a way so the higher-ups cannot be traced back to a single crime, allowing them to pass orders down the chain of command, while the grunts kick in a piece of whatever they earned to their capos and so on. This chain of command was introduced by Sal Maranzano in 1931, as a way to structure the mob along the Roman legions and to maintain order after the Castellammarese War, while the Commission was established by Luciano, who preferred to have a council of bosses governing the mob instead of a Mafia overlord ruling over them and demanding for tribute from other bosses, but retained the structure Maranzano established.



* '''Boss''' - [[TheDon The official head of a particular family]]. "Don" is an honorific, not a title: in today's Italy it's reserved to ''priests''. Since Mafia families in Sicily are more numerous and smaller than those in the United States, the title is not as distinguished, although the boss still has paramount authority within his region. "Hits" on individuals under his family's protection are at the sole discretion of the boss, and he also decides who is allowed to become a formal member of the family ("opening the books" is a term used by the Cosa Nostra to induct new members into a family). Much of the boss's other duties include settling disputes (holding "sit-downs") between family members and other crime families, relaying orders down the chain of command, receiving a tribute from the family's capos (and rarely, soldiers and associates serving directly under him) and promote or demote ("knock down" or "break") family members at will. Murdering (or attempting to murder) an official boss is a big no-no in the Mafia, as the Commission would order the usurper's death for killing his own boss without explicit permission (only the Commission can authorize a hit on bosses - though this rule has been flouted many times).

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* '''Boss''' - [[TheDon The official head of a particular family]]. "Don" is an honorific, not a title: in today's Italy it's reserved to ''priests''. Since Mafia families in Sicily are more numerous and smaller than those in the United States, the title is not isn't as distinguished, although the boss still has paramount authority within his region. "Hits" on individuals under his family's protection are at the sole discretion of the boss, and he also decides who is allowed to become a formal member of the family ("opening the books" is a term used by the Cosa Nostra to induct new members into a family). Much of the boss's other duties include settling disputes (holding "sit-downs") between family members and other crime families, relaying orders down the chain of command, receiving a tribute from the family's capos (and rarely, soldiers and associates serving directly under him) and promote or demote ("knock down" or "break") family members at will. Murdering (or attempting to murder) an official boss is a big no-no in the Mafia, as the Commission would order the usurper's death for killing his own boss without explicit permission (only the Commission can authorize a hit on bosses - though this rule has been flouted many times).



* '''[[TheConsigliere Consigliere]]''' - [[RuleOfThree The third-in-command]] [[EvilGenius of a Mafia family]], they're an advisor or counselor to the boss, with the additional responsibility of representing the family in Commission meetings. In theory, he is one of the few allowed to argue with the boss, when he thinks what the boss is doing could destroy the family. Most "consigliere" types in media (such as [[TropeMaker Tom Hagen]]) are actually based on Mob ''lawyers''. Though the Commission specified a counselor in each family to act as their eyes and ears, most RealLife mob bosses treated it as a lower-level position. Many families often use the position for a veteran who knows the ins and outs of the family's power, but does not wish to rise to power for whatever reason. Chicago would be a subversion, with the "consigliere" being a sort of "boss emeritus" aka capo consigliere (mobsters Tony Accardo and Paul Ricca held this title, and exercised [[TheManBehindTheMan behind-the-scenes control]] of the Chicago Outfit for nearly 50 years while letting lower-level capos such as Sam Giancana or Joey "Doves" Aiuppa hold the title of boss). Nicodemo Scarfo was another subversion, as he became the boss of the Philly Mob when the previous boss, Phil Testa, was assassinated while the underboss, Peter Casella, was exiled to Florida. At the time of Phil Testa's death, Scarfo was the number-three man. A consigliere generally has one soldier underneath him as an aide-de-camp and source of additional income; the lack of attachment to a crew supposedly makes him more "impartial" and obviously makes him less powerful. Like the underboss, the consigliere's power varies: some are mere flunkies for the boss, while others can be very influential.
* '''Acting Boss/Street Boss/Front Boss''' - A rank unique to the American Mafia, appearing in response to increasing law enforcement heat, rendering most "official" bosses and underbosses no longer at liberty to control the day-to-day operations of their families. This responsibility usually ends up being delegated to a capo (who still operates his own crew in the meantime), who can send a "messenger" to receive orders from the boss and pass along tribute. Even when the official boss is free, this structure is at times maintained as a veneer to prevent outsiders from knowing who's calling the shots - the Genovese family is a notable user of this since the 1970s and have been playing bait-and-switch with law enforcement using this tactic, as they would oftentimes prop up "dummy" bosses (usually high-ranking grunts) while the official boss remains hidden. May sometimes in fact be the ''[[TheAllegedBoss de facto]]'' [[TheManBehindTheMan boss in]] ''[[TheManBehindTheMan all but name]]'', especially if the official boss is old, ill, or kept incommunicado in prison, and if the Street Boss would rather keep a low profile. (Note: This, essentially, was the rank [[Series/TheSopranos Tony Soprano]] occupied for most of the series.).

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* '''[[TheConsigliere Consigliere]]''' - [[RuleOfThree The third-in-command]] [[EvilGenius of a Mafia family]], they're an advisor or counselor to the boss, with the additional responsibility of representing the family in Commission meetings. In theory, he is one of the few allowed to argue with the boss, when he thinks what the boss is doing could destroy the family. Most "consigliere" types in media (such as [[TropeMaker Tom Hagen]]) are actually based on Mob ''lawyers''. Though the Commission specified a counselor in each family to act as their eyes and ears, most RealLife mob bosses treated saw it as a lower-level position. Many families often use the position for a veteran who knows the ins and outs of the family's power, but does not wish to rise to power for whatever reason. Chicago would be a subversion, with the "consigliere" being a sort of "boss emeritus" aka capo consigliere (mobsters consigliere; mobsters Tony Accardo and Paul Ricca held this title, and exercised [[TheManBehindTheMan behind-the-scenes control]] of the Chicago Outfit for nearly 50 years while letting lower-level capos such as Sam Giancana or Joey "Doves" Aiuppa hold the title of boss).boss. Nicodemo Scarfo was another subversion, as he became the boss of the Philly Mob when the previous boss, Phil Testa, was assassinated while the underboss, Peter Casella, was exiled to Florida. At the time of Phil Testa's death, Scarfo was the number-three man. A consigliere generally has one soldier underneath him as an aide-de-camp and source of additional income; the lack of attachment to a crew supposedly makes him more "impartial" and obviously makes him less powerful. Like the underboss, the consigliere's power varies: some are mere flunkies for the boss, while others can be very influential.
influential to the point of being the ''de facto'' or real power behind the throne.
* '''Acting Boss/Street Boss/Front Boss''' - A rank unique to the American Mafia, appearing in response to increasing law enforcement heat, rendering most "official" bosses and underbosses no longer at liberty to control the day-to-day operations of their families. This responsibility usually ends up being delegated to a capo (who still operates his own crew in the meantime), who can send a "messenger" to receive orders from the boss and pass along tribute. Even when the official boss is free, this structure is at times maintained as a veneer to prevent outsiders from knowing who's calling the shots - the Genovese family is a notable user of this since the 1970s and have been playing bait-and-switch with law enforcement using this tactic, as they would oftentimes prop up "dummy" bosses (usually bosses, usually high-ranking grunts) grunts, while the official boss remains hidden. May sometimes in fact be the ''[[TheAllegedBoss de facto]]'' [[TheManBehindTheMan boss in]] ''[[TheManBehindTheMan all but name]]'', especially if the official boss is old, ill, or kept incommunicado in prison, and if the Street Boss would rather keep a low profile. (Note: This, essentially, was the rank [[Series/TheSopranos Tony Soprano]] occupied for most of the series.).



* '''Capodecina/Caporegime''' - Also known as a captain, skipper, ''capo'', or "crew chief," the ''capo'' may oversee a ''borgata'', faction or crew of approx. 10-20 soldiers and many more associates as he can efficiently control in a certain territory or racket assigned to him. Grants permission for all criminal activities in his crew (unauthorized activities may run afoul of another crew or another family's rackets), collects a share of every score from his underlings, and passes a fixed sum or percentage on to the higher-ups. Capos are, in effect, the family's "middle management." Their control over the family's earners and shooters gives them a great deal of power, and they are often the kingmakers if the official boss dies, retires or is incapacitated. The latter title is unique to the American Mafia. Sometimes, if a capo is in good graces with the boss (especially if they're a good earner and is respected by the other wiseguys), then the official boss may promote the capo to street or acting boss (while running their own crew), especially if the boss is imprisoned, ill, semi-retired, wants to lay low or [[TheManBehindTheMan as a facade to prevent law enforcement from knowing who's actually in charge]]. On occasions, a capo may be placed in charge of a faction that a family has significant interests in; for example, the Genovese family, which has five crews in its New Jersey faction, appoints one of the capos to supervise it. Another example was John Gotti, who was the ''de facto'' head of the Gambino family's blue-collar crews prior to becoming boss.
* '''Soldier''' - a soldato, "wiseguy", "button man", or "made guy." This is the lowest level of mobster or gangster who is considered a full and official member of the "family". A soldier must have taken an oath in which he has sworn to follow the rules of the Mafia (such as ''omertà''), and with a few exceptions, must have killed a person in order to be considered "made."[[note]]Since talking about killings is considered verboten, there's a bit of leeway with this requirement.[[/note]] This entitles them to the full protection of the family in question. Killing or assaulting a soldier, or even infringing on their rackets without explicit permission of their higher-ups, is a big no-no in the mob, as the offender will meet a violent end. American mafiosi may refer to a made man among other made men as "a friend of ours" — which means that any business pertaining to the family can be openly discussed. As a rule of thumb, two made men must always be formally introduced by a third party known to both, even if they're father and son. ''Picciotto'' is used within the Sicilian Mafia and indicates someone of a lower rank than that of ''Soldato''. In the American Mafia, only males of Italian descent can become a made man, and must trace their lineage through their father's side.

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* '''Capodecina/Caporegime''' - Also known as a captain, skipper, ''capo'', or "crew chief," the ''capo'' may oversee a ''borgata'', faction or crew of approx. 10-20 soldiers and many more associates as he can efficiently control in a certain territory or racket assigned to him. Grants permission for all criminal activities in his crew (unauthorized activities may run afoul of another crew or another family's rackets), collects a share of every score from his underlings, and passes a fixed sum or percentage on to the higher-ups. Capos are, in effect, the family's "middle management." Their control over the family's earners and shooters gives them a great deal of power, and they are often the kingmakers if the official boss dies, retires or is incapacitated. The latter title is unique to the American Mafia. Sometimes, if a capo is in good graces with the boss (especially if they're a good earner and is respected by the other wiseguys), then the official boss may promote the capo to street or acting boss (while running their own crew), especially if the boss is imprisoned, ill, semi-retired, wants to lay low low, is grooming a successor, or [[TheManBehindTheMan as a facade to prevent law enforcement from knowing who's actually in charge]]. On occasions, a capo may be placed in charge of a faction that a family has significant interests in; for example, the Genovese family, which has five crews in its New Jersey faction, appoints one of the capos to supervise it. Another example was John Gotti, who was the ''de facto'' head of the Gambino family's blue-collar crews prior to becoming boss.
* '''Soldier''' - a soldato, "wiseguy", "button man", or "made guy." This is the lowest level of mobster or gangster who is considered a full and official member of the "family". A soldier must have taken an oath in which he has sworn to follow the rules of the Mafia (such as ''omertà''), and with a few exceptions, must have killed a person in order to be considered "made."[[note]]Since talking about killings is considered verboten, there's a bit of leeway with this requirement.[[/note]] This entitles them to the full protection of the family in question. Killing or assaulting a soldier, or even infringing on their rackets without explicit permission of their higher-ups, is a big no-no in the mob, as the offender will meet a violent end. American mafiosi may refer to a made man among other made men as "a friend of ours" — which means that any business pertaining to the family can be openly discussed. As a rule of thumb, two made men must always be formally introduced by a third party known to both, even if they're father and son. ''Picciotto'' is used within the Sicilian Mafia and indicates someone of a lower rank than that of ''Soldato''. In the American Mafia, only males of Italian descent can become a made man, and must trace their lineage through their father's side.
21st Apr '18 5:01:09 PM ImperialMajestyXO
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* '''Trafficante/Tampa Bay crime family''' - controls much of southern Florida (including Tampa Bay), except for Miami, which is an open territory. They reached their peak strength under Santo Trafficante Jr., who had gambling rackets in Cuba and had ties with Fulgencio Batista, then the president of Cuba in the 1950s. When the Cuban Revolution came by, he lost his gambling rackets and was involved in a botched CIA plot to rub off Castro; he was also presumably involved in a plot to kill JFK, though this has been disputed. Since his death, the family has been in decline, allowing the New York mafia to take control of rackets in the area.

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* '''Trafficante/Tampa Bay crime family''' - controls much of southern Florida (including Tampa Bay), except for Miami, which is an open territory. They reached their peak strength under Santo Trafficante Jr., who had gambling rackets in Cuba and had ties with Fulgencio Batista, then the president of Cuba in the 1950s. When the Cuban Revolution came by, he lost his gambling rackets and was involved in a botched CIA plot to rub off Castro; UsefulNotes/FidelCastro; he was also presumably involved in a plot to kill JFK, though this has been disputed. Since his death, the family has been in decline, allowing the New York mafia to take control of rackets in the area.
20th Apr '18 2:27:24 AM SuperLurkerGuy
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Plus, a cap on each family's size and roster was imposed as a way to prevent one family from becoming too large via unauthorized expansions. For example, the Genovese and Gambino families each are allowed to have 450 made men, while the Bonanno family has a max size of 350 made men, and the Luccheses and Colombos each have a max size of 200 made men.

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Plus, a cap on each family's size and roster was imposed as a way to prevent one family from becoming too large via unauthorized expansions. For example, the Genovese and Gambino families each are allowed to have around 450 made men, while the Bonanno Colombo family has a max size of 350 around 200 made men, and the Luccheses and Colombos Bonnanos each have a max size of 200 around 150 made men.men. These are theoretical limits that are seldom, if ever, reached in modern days; there simply aren't enough rackets to allow a comfortable living for 1400 made men in the city of New York, nor are there enough associates with the necessary qualities for membership.
19th Apr '18 4:23:40 PM Njein
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Plus, a cap on each family's size and roster was imposed as a way to prevent one family from becoming too large via unauthorized expansions. For example, the Genovese and Gambino families each are allowed to have 450 made men, while the Bonanno family has a max size of 350 made men, and the Luccheses and Colombos each have a max size of 200 made men.



* An associate of a crime family who was in the police force, attended a police academy, or served as a corrections officer cannot become a made member of the Mafia.

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* An associate of a crime family who was in the police force, attended a police academy, or served as a corrections officer cannot become a made member of the Mafia.



After the induction ceremony, the associate becomes a made man and holds the rank of soldier in the Mafia totem pole. A made man enjoys the full protection and backing of the Mafia establishment as long as he remains in favor and earns enough money, a percentage of which must be passed up the hierarchy. A made man is traditionally seen as "untouchable" by fellow criminals: he is to be respected and feared. Killing or assaulting a made man for any reason without explicit permission of the higher-ups is a ''big no-no'', usually punishable by death, regardless of whether the perpetrator had a legitimate grievance; however, a made man ''can be'' killed if a strong argument is provided ''and'' the higher-ups green-light it.

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After the induction ceremony, the associate becomes a made man and holds the rank of soldier in the Mafia totem pole. A made man enjoys the full protection and backing of the Mafia establishment as long as he remains in favor and earns enough money, a percentage of which must be passed up the hierarchy. A made man is They are traditionally seen as "untouchable" by fellow criminals: he is to be respected and feared. Killing or assaulting a made man for any reason without explicit permission of the higher-ups is a ''big no-no'', usually punishable by death, regardless of whether the perpetrator had a legitimate grievance; however, a made man ''can be'' killed if a strong argument is provided ''and'' the higher-ups green-light it.



Big Tuna? Tony Ducks? Vinny the Chin? Since the Italian Mafia is a PlanetOfSteves, with a large number of mobsters sharing the same name, it became inevitable for them to distinguish each other with a unique nickname. They get their nicknames in many ways: their physical appearance, their occupation, where they live, a trait associated with them, the weapon they use when committing crimes, etc. For example, Louis Attanasio, a capo for the Bonanno family, earned the nickname "Louie Ha-Ha" because he often laughed whenever he heard about a mobster dying. Alphonse Malangone got the nickname "Allie Shades" because he often wore aviator shades.

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Big Tuna? Tony Ducks? Vinny the Chin? Since the Italian Mafia is a PlanetOfSteves, with a large number of mobsters sharing the same name, it became inevitable for them to distinguish each other with a unique nickname. They get their nicknames in many ways: their physical appearance, their occupation, where they live, a trait associated with them, the weapon they use when committing crimes, etc. For example, Louis Attanasio, a capo for the Bonanno family, earned the nickname "Louie Ha-Ha" because he often laughed whenever he heard about a mobster mobsters dying. Alphonse Malangone got the nickname "Allie Shades" because he often wore aviator shades.
18th Apr '18 12:52:45 PM Njein
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Big Tuna? Tony Ducks? Vinny the Chin? Since the Italian Mafia is a PlanetOfSteves, with a large number of mobsters sharing the same name, it became inevitable for them to distinguish each other with a unique nickname. They get their nicknames in many ways: their physical appearance, their occupation, where they live, a trait associated with them, the weapon they use when committing crimes, etc. For example, Louis Attanasio, a capo for the Bonanno family, earned the nickname "Louie Ha-Ha" because he often laughed whenever he heard about a mobster dying. Alphonse Malangone, a capo for the Genovese family, got the nickname "Allie Shades" because he often wore aviator shades.

While some mobsters, such as Crazy Joey Gallo, appreciated their nicknames, for others, it became their BerserkButton, as it became an EmbarrassingNickname for them. For example, Carmine Persico was given the unflattering name "the Snake" by his rivals because he betrayed the Gallo crew by siding with Joe Profaci during the 1st Colombo family war in the 1960s. Persico hated it, but the caught on among some fellow criminals. Meanwhile, Vincent Gigante asked his name never be spoken aloud, ordered his men to beat up anybody who mentioned his name, and insisted others rub or point their fingers across their chin when referring to him.

to:

Big Tuna? Tony Ducks? Vinny the Chin? Since the Italian Mafia is a PlanetOfSteves, with a large number of mobsters sharing the same name, it became inevitable for them to distinguish each other with a unique nickname. They get their nicknames in many ways: their physical appearance, their occupation, where they live, a trait associated with them, the weapon they use when committing crimes, etc. For example, Louis Attanasio, a capo for the Bonanno family, earned the nickname "Louie Ha-Ha" because he often laughed whenever he heard about a mobster dying. Alphonse Malangone, a capo for the Genovese family, Malangone got the nickname "Allie Shades" because he often wore aviator shades.

While some mobsters, such as Crazy Joey Gallo, appreciated their nicknames, for others, it became their BerserkButton, as it became an EmbarrassingNickname for them. For example, Carmine Persico was given the unflattering name "the Snake" by his rivals because he betrayed the Gallo crew by siding with Joe Profaci during the 1st Colombo family war in the 1960s. Persico hated it, but the caught on among some fellow criminals. Meanwhile, Vincent Gigante asked his name never be spoken aloud, ordered his men to beat up anybody who mentioned his name, and insisted others rub or point their fingers across their chin when referring to him.him, and ordered his men to beat up anybody who mentioned his name out of fear of getting his name picked up on FBI bugs.



** ''Acting'' 2015—present — Joseph "Joe C" Cammarano Jr.

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** ''Acting'' 2015—present 2015—2018 — Joseph "Joe C" Cammarano Jr.



* 2016-present — unknown

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* 2016-present — unknown
Charles "Big Ears" Majuri
16th Apr '18 8:59:16 AM Njein
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Added DiffLines:

!!Mobster Nicknames

[[folder:What's in a Nickname?]]
Big Tuna? Tony Ducks? Vinny the Chin? Since the Italian Mafia is a PlanetOfSteves, with a large number of mobsters sharing the same name, it became inevitable for them to distinguish each other with a unique nickname. They get their nicknames in many ways: their physical appearance, their occupation, where they live, a trait associated with them, the weapon they use when committing crimes, etc. For example, Louis Attanasio, a capo for the Bonanno family, earned the nickname "Louie Ha-Ha" because he often laughed whenever he heard about a mobster dying. Alphonse Malangone, a capo for the Genovese family, got the nickname "Allie Shades" because he often wore aviator shades.

While some mobsters, such as Crazy Joey Gallo, appreciated their nicknames, for others, it became their BerserkButton, as it became an EmbarrassingNickname for them. For example, Carmine Persico was given the unflattering name "the Snake" by his rivals because he betrayed the Gallo crew by siding with Joe Profaci during the 1st Colombo family war in the 1960s. Persico hated it, but the caught on among some fellow criminals. Meanwhile, Vincent Gigante asked his name never be spoken aloud, ordered his men to beat up anybody who mentioned his name, and insisted others rub or point their fingers across their chin when referring to him.
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15th Apr '18 8:49:28 PM Njein
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The American Mafia began with loosely-knit protection gangs known as ''Black Hands,'' taking orders from emigrated Sicilian mafiosi. Charles "Lucky" Luciano, both a member of the Sicilian Mafia (under Joe Masseria) and a graduate of the infamous Italian-American Five Points Gang, drew members from other parts of Italy (or rather other parts of ''Little'' Italy) under his umbrella, knocked off the old hats (known in the day as "Mustache Petes"), and reorganized the American Mafia along territorial lines. Each city in the country was given to one family, except for New York, which famously got five. This structure, along with the "Commission" (an executive body designed for resolving disputes, which included at its inception the bosses of the Five Families, the boss from Buffalo, and Chicago boss Al Capone, and at times included other families such as Philadelphia and Detroit; the modern "Commission" now consists of the bosses of the Five Families and the boss of the Chicago Outfit) is generally believed to have held up today, despite heavy law enforcement pressure. Modern-day candidates for "made guys" must be "of Italian descent," which can mean varying things according to which family is making the decision; some families, such as the Chicago Outfit, do not heavily stress the "made guy" role and do a lot of business with associates of non-Italian ethnicity (indeed, the "Chicago Outfit" was originally a coalition of many ethnic gangs, including Irish, Italians, Jews, and Poles, under the leadership of Al Capone's predecessor Johnny Torrio, who all agreed not to interfere with the other gangs' bootlegging operations; the Italians, being the most organized and having connections to the massive operations in New York, were merely first among equals); other families, such as the Bonanno family of New York have substantial "zip" (imported Sicilian mafiosi) factions and are more stringent in regards to who they do business with.

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The American Mafia began with loosely-knit protection gangs known as ''Black Hands,'' taking orders from emigrated Sicilian mafiosi. Charles "Lucky" Luciano, both a member of the Sicilian Mafia (under Joe Masseria) and a graduate of the infamous Italian-American Five Points Gang, drew members from other parts of Italy (or rather other parts of ''Little'' Italy) under his umbrella, knocked off the old hats (known in the day as "Mustache Petes"), and reorganized the American Mafia along territorial lines. Each city in the country was given to one family, except for New York, which famously got five. This structure, along with the "Commission" (an executive body designed for resolving disputes, which included at its inception the bosses of the Five Families, the boss from Buffalo, and Chicago boss Al Capone, and at times included other families such as Philadelphia and Detroit; the modern "Commission" now consists of the bosses of the Five Families and the boss of the Chicago Outfit) is generally believed to have held up today, despite heavy law enforcement pressure. Modern-day candidates for "made guys" must be "of Italian descent," which can mean varying things according to which family is making the decision; some families, such as the Chicago Outfit, do not heavily stress the "made guy" role and do a lot of business with associates of non-Italian ethnicity (indeed, the "Chicago Outfit" was originally a coalition of many ethnic gangs, including Irish, Italians, Jews, and Poles, under the leadership of Al Capone's predecessor Johnny Torrio, who all agreed not to interfere with the other gangs' bootlegging operations; the Italians, being the most organized and having connections to the massive operations in New York, were merely first among equals); other families, such as the Bonanno family of New York Bonannos, have substantial "zip" (imported Sicilian mafiosi) factions crews and are more stringent in regards as to who whom they do business with.



With "Mustache Petes" like Masseria and Maranzano out of the way in 1931, it paved the path for Luciano's rise to power. He not only restructured the American Mafia by introducing a Commission to resolve disputes among the families, but also branched out to work with other ethnic mobs (including the [[KosherNostra Jewish mafia]] and [[TheIrishMob the Irish Mob]]) to form a [[TheSyndicate National Crime Syndicate]]. To ensure the other mobsters are falling in line, Luciano even formed a Brooklyn-based gang of Italian, Irish and Jewish hitmen called MurderInc to function as the Syndicate's murder-for-hire and enforcement arm; it was led by Albert Anastasia and Louis Buchalter, who were both notorious hitmen and labor racketeers. This crew of contract killers was estimated to have committed at as many as 900 murders between 1931 and 1951.

However, things didn't go well for Luciano, and he was deported back to Italy in 1946 following his conviction for running a prostitution ring; he later formed ties with the Sicilian Mafia to distribute drugs in the United States. It was at this time that the Mafia started dabbling in narcotics smuggling, but it immediately split into two camps: those in favor believed it was a lucrative operation, while those opposed thought it would bring attention. The pro-drug trafficking faction eventually won out, and many lower-ranking mobsters began dealing with the Sicilians and other drug traffickers to import narcotics into America. Joe Bonanno, boss of the Bonanno crime family, had crews deep in their neck with drugs, and even set up shop in Montreal to import heroin into the United States. Carlo Gambino, boss of the Gambino family, used Zips (imported Sicilian mafiosi) to import heroin via his cousins, while Vito Genovese actively pushed for narcotics trafficking, but was imprisoned on presumably trumped up charges of drug dealing. Despite an unofficial "ban" on narcotics trafficking being imposed in the 1950s, many families often dealt on the sly, and bosses such as Paul Castellano (Carlo Gambino's cousin and brother-in-law) turned a blind eye to it as long as nobody was pinched.

The Kefauver hearings in 1951 determined that a vast criminal conspiracy operated by Italian mobsters did exist behind the scenes, and the [[CriminalConvention Apalachin Meeting in late 1957]] really confirmed it. [[CriminalConvention It]] was set up by [[BigBadWannabe Vito]] [[TheStarscream Genovese, Lucky Luciano's former underboss]], who aimed to wrest control of the Genovese family from Frank Costello, his main rival and to become [[BigBadWannabe mob's overlord]] after killing Albert Anastasia, the boss of the Mangano (now Gambino) family in October of 1957. Around 100 mobsters attended the meeting at this small town not far from Binghamton, New York, but it turned into a big disaster when a curious state trooper got wind of it (and sent in reinforcements). More than 60 mobsters were caught including Genovese himself; others nabbed include Carlo Gambino, Paul Castellano, Giuseppe Profaci and Santo Trafficante; Tommy Lucchese, Stefano Magaddino and Sam Giancana themselves eluded capture, while Joe Bonanno [[BlatantLies claimed he was not there despite being caught by state troopers in a nearby cornfield]]. Genovese got a lot of flak for this, and he ended up in prison for trumped-up charges on narcotics trafficking in 1959. Another big blow to the mob came in 1963 when a low-level soldier named Joe Valachi became the first made man to flip by providing the government a good glimpse into the inner workings of the Mafia. By this time, law enforcement began putting more effort into cracking down on organized crime, and the passage of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) in 1970 bolstered prosecutors in building cases against individual mobsters and their families.

By the 1980s, the feds were able to crack down on the Mafia's activities, culminating in the Mafia Commission Case (which was spearheaded by Rudy Giuliani, an ambitious US attorney and future mayor of New York City who saw the mob with nothing but contempt). With many of them facing lengthy prison sentences, an increasing number of mafiosi began to cooperate left and right with the FBI in 1990s. Among the more notable [[TheStoolPigeon cooperating witnesses (or "rats", as the Mafia called them)]] was Sammy Gravano, whose testimony helped take down John Gotti, Vincent Gigante and others in the 1990s; Joe Massino was another example, when he became the first official boss to become an informant in 2005. Phil Leonetti, Dominick Montiglio, Jimmy Fratianno, Gaspipe Casso (though he was later thrown out) and Salvatore Vitale were also good examples of mobsters becoming informer. Despite these convictions and informants (and with the FBI now focusing more on terrorism since 9/11), the American Mafia is down but not out: it remains a formidable force and is quietly rebuilding its lost power base, as it's rumored to earn between $50 and $90 billion a year; it now outsources some of its work to other gangs to avoid attention.

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With "Mustache Petes" like Masseria and Maranzano the old-timers out of the way in 1931, it paved the path for Luciano's rise to power. He not only restructured the American Mafia by introducing a Commission to resolve disputes among the families, but also branched out to work with other ethnic mobs (including mobs, including the [[KosherNostra Jewish mafia]] and [[TheIrishMob the Irish Mob]]) Mob]], to form a [[TheSyndicate National Crime Syndicate]]. To ensure the other mobsters are falling in line, Luciano even formed a Brooklyn-based gang of Italian, Irish Italian and Jewish hitmen called MurderInc to function as the Syndicate's murder-for-hire and enforcement arm; it was led by Albert Anastasia and Louis Buchalter, who were both notorious hitmen and labor racketeers. This crew of contract killers was estimated to may have committed at as many as 900 murders between 1931 and 1951.

However, things didn't go well for Luciano, and he was deported back to Italy in 1946 following his conviction for running a prostitution ring; he later formed ties with the Sicilian Mafia Sicilians to distribute drugs in into the United States. It was at this time that the Mafia started dabbling in narcotics smuggling, drug-running, but it immediately split into two camps: those in favor believed it was a lucrative operation, while those opposed thought it would bring attention. The pro-drug trafficking pro-drugs faction eventually won out, and many lower-ranking mobsters began dealing with the Sicilians and other drug traffickers to import narcotics into America. Joe Bonanno, boss of the Bonanno crime family, had crews and henchmen deep in their neck with drugs, and even set up shop in Montreal to import heroin into the United States. Carlo Gambino, boss of the Gambino family, used Zips (imported Sicilian mafiosi) to import heroin via his cousins, while Vito Genovese actively pushed for narcotics trafficking, but was imprisoned on presumably trumped up charges of drug dealing. Despite an unofficial "ban" on narcotics trafficking being imposed in the 1950s, many families often dealt on the sly, and bosses such as Paul Castellano (Carlo Gambino's cousin and brother-in-law) turned a blind eye to it as long as nobody was pinched.

The Kefauver hearings in 1951 determined that a vast criminal conspiracy operated by Italian mobsters did exist behind the scenes, and the [[CriminalConvention Apalachin Meeting in late 1957]] really confirmed it. [[CriminalConvention It]] was set up by [[BigBadWannabe Vito]] [[TheStarscream Genovese, Lucky Luciano's former underboss]], who aimed to wrest control of the Genovese family from Frank Costello, his main rival ArchEnemy and to become [[BigBadWannabe mob's overlord]] after killing Albert Anastasia, the boss of the Mangano (now Gambino) family in October of 1957. Around 100 mobsters attended the meeting at this small town not far from Binghamton, New York, but it turned into a big disaster when a curious state trooper got wind of it (and sent in reinforcements). More than 60 mobsters were caught including Genovese himself; others nabbed include Carlo Gambino, Paul Castellano, Giuseppe Profaci and Santo Trafficante; Tommy Lucchese, Stefano Magaddino and Sam Giancana themselves eluded capture, while Joe Bonanno [[BlatantLies claimed he was not there despite being caught by state troopers in a nearby cornfield]]. Genovese got a lot of flak for this, and he ended up in prison for trumped-up charges on narcotics trafficking in 1959. Another big blow to the mob came in 1963 when a low-level soldier named Joe Valachi became the first made man to flip by providing the government a good glimpse into the inner workings of the Mafia. By this time, law enforcement began putting more effort into cracking down on organized crime, and the passage of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) in 1970 bolstered prosecutors in building cases against individual mobsters and their families.

By the 1980s, the feds were able to crack down on the Mafia's activities, culminating in the Mafia Commission Case (which was spearheaded by Rudy Giuliani, an ambitious US attorney and future mayor of New York City who saw the mob with nothing but contempt). With many of them facing lengthy prison sentences, an increasing number of mafiosi began to cooperate left and right with the FBI in 1990s. Among the more notable [[TheStoolPigeon cooperating witnesses (or "rats", as the Mafia called them)]] was Sammy Gravano, whose testimony helped take down John Gotti, Vincent Gigante and others in the 1990s; Joe Massino was another example, when he became the first official boss to become an informant in 2005. Phil Leonetti, Dominick Montiglio, Jimmy Fratianno, Gaspipe Casso (though he was later thrown out) and Salvatore Vitale were also good examples of mobsters becoming informer. Despite these convictions and informants (and with the FBI now focusing more on terrorism since 9/11), the American Mafia is down but not out: it remains a formidable force and is quietly rebuilding its lost power base, as it's rumored to earn between $50 and $90 billion a year; it now outsources some of its work to other gangs to avoid attention.



* '''Garbage hauling''': One area that is very notable for mob infiltration is garbage hauling. The Mafia got into this industry when cities outsourced their waste hauling activities to contractors, and that meant money-making potential for them to infiltrate these companies. The so-called “garbage mobsters” who ran these operations often falsified paperwork and tampered with waste scales, sometimes to skim profits from the business, and sometimes to hide ill-gotten gains in it. Crew bosses and members often got "no-work, no-show consulting" positions at the firms, which gave them a legitimate reason to explain their income. They also divvied up routes in cities, rigged contract bids to favor mob-controlled garbage haulers, and quashed any outside competition to keep their prices artificially high. The Genovese family still has some control over garbage hauling, through Alphonse "Allie Shades" Malangone, a capo who also has some control over the family's interests in the Fulton Fish Market. ''The Sopranos'' is also accurate in its portrayal of the North Jersey hauling market around the turn of the 21st century: the division of New Jersey into a myriad of municipalities makes it hard to catch corrupt deals like this, though the state has intervened to block this when it has the resources.
* '''Construction and real estate''': Another area that is rife with mob activity is construction and real estate services. In the 1970s and 80s, most major construction projects in New York City could not go ahead without the Five Families' approval, especially if the contract was above $2 million; also many mobsters in major cities were provided with "no-show" jobs in mob-controlled construction companies to explain their income to the IRS. The mob bribed or threatened union leaders in order to obtain a piece of the action whenever they got hold of a construction project, and in some cases, took over the union leadership themselves. Once the Mafia had its grip on a union, it could control an entire industry, and could halt or slow down a project if contractors and developers didn't make the right pay-offs. These pay-offs to mob-controlled contractors and unions often forced outsiders to pass these costs down the chain, including developers, brokers, etc., and in turn, forcing real estate prices to skyrocket. Plus, the mob has always ingrained itself within real estate crimes, such as [[RealEstateScam "swampland-in-Florida-for-sale" scams]], predatory lending schemes and equity fraud.

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* '''Garbage hauling''': One area that is very notable for mob infiltration is garbage hauling. The Mafia got into this industry when cities outsourced their waste hauling activities to contractors, and that meant money-making potential for them to infiltrate these companies. The so-called “garbage mobsters” who ran these operations often falsified paperwork and tampered with waste scales, sometimes to skim profits from the business, and sometimes to hide ill-gotten gains in it. Crew bosses and members often got "no-work, no-show consulting" positions "no-show" jobs at the these firms, which gave them a legitimate reason to explain their income. They also divvied up routes in cities, rigged contract bids to favor mob-controlled garbage haulers, and quashed any outside competition to keep their prices artificially high. The Genovese family still has some control over garbage hauling, through Alphonse "Allie Shades" Malangone, a capo who also has some control over the family's interests in the Fulton Fish Market. ''The Sopranos'' is also accurate in its portrayal of the North Jersey hauling market around the turn of the 21st century: the division of New Jersey into a myriad of municipalities makes it hard to catch corrupt deals like this, though the state has intervened to block this when it has the resources.
* '''Construction and real estate''': Another area that is rife with mob activity is construction and real estate services. In the 1970s and 80s, most major construction projects in New York City could not go ahead without the Five Families' approval, especially if the contract was above $2 million; also many mobsters in major cities were provided with "no-show" jobs in mob-controlled construction companies to explain their income to the IRS. The mob bribed or threatened union leaders in order to obtain a piece of the action whenever they got hold of a construction project, and in some cases, took over the union leadership themselves. Once the Mafia had its grip on a union, it could control an entire industry, and could halt or slow down a project if contractors and developers didn't make the right pay-offs. These pay-offs to mob-controlled contractors and unions often forced outsiders to pass these costs down the chain, including developers, brokers, etc., and in turn, forcing real estate prices to skyrocket. Plus, the mob has always ingrained itself within real estate crimes, such as [[RealEstateScam "swampland-in-Florida-for-sale" scams]], predatory lending schemes and equity fraud.



* '''Food distribution''': This area was also rife with mob activity. Paul Castellano used his Dial Meat Purveyors as a way to strong-arm meat distributors and supermarkets into stocking his poultry products, thanks to his prior experience as a butcher early in his mob career, while the Bonanno family used pizza joints as a cover to smuggle and distribute imported heroin in the United States; Joe Bonanno even had behind-the-scenes interests in cheese distributors such as Grande Cheese during his 60+ years in the mob. The Fulton Fish Market is still rife with mob activity, especially with the Genovese and Bonanno families forcing non-mob affiliated competitors to pay a "tax" in order to sell their fish. Mobsters even infiltrated and shook down restaurants, bars and nightclubs if their owners could not pay back the loan they owed, or if they failed to pay the extortion "tax".

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* '''Food distribution''': This area was also rife with mob activity. Paul Castellano used his Dial Meat Purveyors as a way to strong-arm meat distributors and supermarkets into stocking his poultry products, thanks to his prior experience as a butcher early in his mob career, while the Bonanno family used pizza joints as a cover to smuggle and distribute imported heroin in into the United States; Joe Bonanno even had behind-the-scenes interests in cheese distributors such as Grande Cheese during his 60+ years in the mob. The Fulton Fish Market is still rife with mob activity, especially with the Genovese and Bonanno families forcing non-mob affiliated competitors to pay a "tax" in order to sell their fish. Mobsters even infiltrated and shook down restaurants, bars and nightclubs if their owners could not pay back the loan they owed, or if they failed to pay the extortion "tax".



* '''Political/governmental corruption''': American politics is still rife with corruption, especially in cities and small towns, where machine politics still has a big sway over the locality's budget. New York and Chicago were great examples of machine politics, and mobsters would take advantage of this in exchange for political favors and to rig contracts in favor of mob-controlled businesses; Tommy Lucchese and Frank Costello often jockeyed with one another over who would control Tammany Hall. The mob would sometimes offer bribes to {{Corrupt Politician}}s and crooked officials in exchange for turning a blind eye to organized crime activities. In the 1990s, two NYPD officers were revealed to be working for the Mafia as mob-hired hitmen and contract killers, and were on the Lucchese family's payroll for years.

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* '''Political/governmental corruption''': American politics is still rife with corruption, especially in cities and small towns, where machine politics still has a big sway over the locality's budget. New York and Chicago were great examples of machine politics, and mobsters would take advantage of this in exchange for political favors and to rig contracts in favor of mob-controlled businesses; Tommy Lucchese and Frank Costello often jockeyed with one another over who would control Tammany Hall. The mob would sometimes offer bribes to {{Corrupt Politician}}s and crooked officials in exchange for turning a blind eye to organized crime activities. In the 1990s, two NYPD officers were revealed to be working worked for the Mafia mob as mob-hired hitmen and contract killers, and were on the Lucchese family's payroll for years.



* '''Illegal gambling''': Gambling has always been a very important business in the Mafia — in fact, the early mob families always had illegal numbers running operations. From card games to sports betting, the Mafia has earned cash from all of them. They operated many illegal and luxurious gambling operations throughout the United States, while police officers and politicians turned a blind eye to these gambling rackets in exchange for payoffs. Las Vegas, Cuba and Atlantic City became gambling meccas, and the mob took notice. Though the Mafia has a diminished influence in Las Vegas, its long-lasting impact on the gambling mecca's development will be felt for decades to come.
* '''Sports betting''': The mob was also heavily involved in sports betting, especially in horse racing, college sports and boxing. Several Mafia members associated with the Lucchese crime family participated in a point shaving scandal involving Boston College basketball team. Rick Kuhn, Henry Hill, and others associated with the Lucchese crime family, manipulated the results of the games during the 1978–1979 basketball season. Through bribing and intimidating several members of the team, they ensured their bets on the point spread of each game would go in their favor. Frankie Carbo and Tommy "Ryan" Eboli were deep into rigging boxing matches, and even became the Mafia's unofficial commissioners for boxing.

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* '''Illegal gambling''': Gambling has always been a very important business in the Mafia — in fact, the early mob families always had illegal numbers running operations. From card games to sports betting, the Mafia has earned raked in cash from all of them. They operated many illegal and luxurious gambling operations throughout the United States, while police officers and politicians turned a blind eye to these gambling rackets in exchange for payoffs. Las Vegas, Cuba and Atlantic City became gambling meccas, and the mob took notice. Though the Mafia has a diminished influence in Las Vegas, its long-lasting impact on the gambling mecca's development will be felt for decades to come.
* '''Sports betting''': The mob was also heavily involved in sports betting, especially in horse racing, college sports and boxing. Several Mafia members associated with the Lucchese crime family participated in a point shaving scandal involving Boston College basketball team. Rick Kuhn, Henry Hill, and others associated with the Lucchese crime family, family manipulated the results of the games during the 1978–1979 basketball season. Through bribing and intimidating several members of the team, they ensured their bets on the point spread of each game would go in their favor. Frankie Carbo and Tommy "Ryan" Eboli were deep into rigging boxing matches, and even became the Mafia's unofficial commissioners for boxing.



* '''Extortion''': The Mafia has been involved in extortion of various types from the start, as it started out as Black Hand extortion rings in the early 1900s. Eventually, mobsters began to strong-arm businesses, unions, and freelance criminals, forcing them down to pay a "street tax" in exchange for operating in territories the Mafia controlled in a given area. They could shake down businesses and individuals in many ways, including loansharking, confidence tricks, protection rackets, and shakedowns. Often, the ominous threat of violence was often employed in many of these rackets, to ensure that they are falling in line.

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* '''Extortion''': The Mafia has been involved in extortion of various types from the start, as it started out as Black Hand extortion rings in the early 1900s. Eventually, mobsters began to strong-arm businesses, unions, and freelance criminals, forcing them down to pay a "street tax" in exchange for operating in territories the Mafia controlled in a given area.Mafia-controlled territories. They could shake down businesses and individuals in many ways, including loansharking, confidence tricks, protection rackets, and shakedowns. Often, the ominous threat of violence was often employed in many of these rackets, to ensure that they are falling in line.



* '''Contraband smuggling''': From bootlegging and gunrunning in the 1920s and 1930s to cigarette smuggling and human trafficking, the Mafia has been involved in all sorts of contraband smuggling, as a way to evade import duties/taxes and to smuggle in banned items. Bootlegging became the Mafia's primary moneymaker in the 1920s, as many of the [[YoungGun Young Turks]] began their mob careers during Prohibition. By the time Prohibition was repealed in 1933, many of them were millionaires, and soon dabbled in other areas such as numbers running, labor racketeering and narcotics trafficking (drug trafficking eventually became the mob's biggest moneymaker, but it also attracted attention). In the 1980s, the Colombo family formed a gas tax evasion scheme with the Russian mob by siphoning off money that would have went to the federal government.

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* '''Contraband smuggling''': From bootlegging and gunrunning in the 1920s and 1930s to cigarette smuggling and human trafficking, the Mafia has been involved in all sorts of contraband smuggling, as a way to evade import duties/taxes and to smuggle in banned items. Bootlegging became the Mafia's primary moneymaker in the 1920s, as many of the [[YoungGun Young Turks]] began their mob careers during Prohibition. By the time Prohibition was repealed in 1933, many of them were millionaires, and soon dabbled in other areas such as numbers running, labor racketeering and narcotics trafficking (drug trafficking eventually became the mob's biggest moneymaker, but it also attracted attention). In the 1980s, the Colombo family formed a gas tax evasion scheme with the Russian mob RussianMafia by siphoning off money that would have went to the federal government.



Before being inducted, a potential made man is required to carry out a contract killing. Traditionally this was done in order to prove loyalty to the Mafia, but in modern times, it also serves to show that one is not an undercover cop (no, a cop may ''not'' legally conspire to commit a murder, nor assault a civilian, lest they be branded as a felon if they do so and face stiff penalties); any murder committed for [[ItsPersonal personal reasons]] "do not count." Committing one's first contract murder is referred to as "making your bones," and a potential inductee who does it earns his "button" in the Mafia — meaning he's on track to becoming made. However, earning one's "button" does not always involve killing; good "earners," or experienced associates who have not necessarily murdered for the Mafia but have good rackets or schemes, have in the past earned their "button," or become made men, due to their valuable contributions beyond murder-for-hire. Until the 1980s, one only had to be involved in a murder, such as driving the getaway car, or be a major "earner" for the family in order to fulfill the requirements, but it wasn't until the Donnie Brasco fiasco, which revealed that undercover FBI agent Joe Pistone was close to being made into the Bonanno crime family, that a rule was made that potential inductees must actually perform a murder. The contract killing proves that the inductee is fully committed to joining the Mafia, knows the risks and penalties involved if he gets out of line, and most importantly, it confirms that he is ''not'' a cop.

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Before being inducted, a potential made man is required to carry out a contract killing. Traditionally this was done in order to prove loyalty to the Mafia, but in modern times, it also serves to show that one is not an undercover cop (no, a cop may ''not'' legally conspire to commit a murder, nor assault a civilian, lest they be branded as a felon if they do so and face stiff penalties); any murder committed for [[ItsPersonal personal reasons]] "do not count." Committing one's first contract murder is referred to as "making your bones," and a potential inductee who does it earns his "button" in the Mafia — meaning he's on track to becoming made. However, earning one's "button" does not always involve killing; good "earners," or experienced associates who have not necessarily murdered for the Mafia but have good rackets or schemes, have in the past earned their "button," or become made men, due to their valuable contributions beyond murder-for-hire. Until the 1980s, one only had to be involved in a murder, such as driving the getaway car, or be a major "earner" for the family in order to fulfill the requirements, but it wasn't until the Donnie Brasco fiasco, which revealed that undercover FBI agent Joe Pistone was close to being made into the Bonanno crime family, Bonannos, that a rule was made that potential inductees must actually perform a murder. The contract killing proves that the inductee is fully committed to joining the Mafia, knows the risks and penalties involved if he gets out of line, and most importantly, it confirms that he is ''not'' a cop.



Made men are the only ones who can rise through the ranks of the Mafia, from soldier to capo, consigliere, underboss, and boss. There is another obstacle — all potential inductees have to be considered ''and'' approved by the Mafia Commission. During the Castellammarese War, Mafia families would often recruit new members in bulk; as they could not be recognized by the other families, they easily approached the rival capos and [[DeadlyEuphemism rubbed them out]]. To put an end to this, all families are now required to give a list of prospective members to the Commission. It's circulated among the other families and eliminates the risk of not being recognized, and also gave the opportunity of removing any inductee which some other family had a problem with. If such an inductee were to become a made man, individual disagreements between him and any other member could easily spark turf wars.

to:

Made men are the only ones who can rise through the ranks of the Mafia, from soldier to capo, consigliere, underboss, and boss. There is another obstacle — all potential inductees have to be considered ''and'' approved by the Mafia Commission. During the Castellammarese War, Mafia families would often recruit new members in bulk; as they could not be recognized by the other families, they easily approached the rival capos and [[DeadlyEuphemism rubbed them out]]. To put an end to this, all families are now required to give a list of prospective members to the Commission. It's circulated among the other families and eliminates the risk of not being recognized, and also gave the opportunity of removing any inductee which some other family had a problem with. If such an inductee were to become a made man, individual disagreements between him and any other member could easily spark turf wars.



When the crime family "opens the books" (accepts new members), the associate will get a call telling him to get ready and be dressed. He is then taken to a private and secluded place for the ceremony to take place, usually done in a dark room or in the basement of a fellow mobster’s house. At a table sits the family administration and some of the capos and soldiers, as well as other inductees if they're joining as well. The mobster is then told that this is a [[CovertGroup closed and secret society (the boss also talks about the secret society's history)]], [[ResignationsNotAccepted the only way out is in a box]], and [[LoyalToThePosition this ‘thing of ours’ comes before your blood family]].

A gun and a knife are put in front of the inductee, with the boss asking him if he would use these to defend his fellow members troubling situations — the inductee must say yes. Then, the inductee’s trigger finger is pricked until blood came out. The blood would be put on the picture of a saint, then the picture is placed in the hands of the inductee. Then the boss lights the picture on fire and while the wiseguy juggles it in his hands, the boss says: "If you divulge the secrets of our life, your soul will burn in hell, just like this saint", asking the inductee to repeat this vow, known as Omertà. Then the newly made guy kisses the higher-ups on both cheeks.

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When the crime family "opens the books" (accepts new members), the associate will get a call telling him to get ready and be dressed. He is then taken to a private and secluded place for the ceremony to take place, usually done in a dark room or in the basement of a fellow mobster’s house. At a table sits the family administration and some of the capos and soldiers, as well as other inductees if they're joining as well. The mobster is then told that this is a [[CovertGroup closed and secret society (the boss also talks about the secret society's history)]], history and rules)]], [[ResignationsNotAccepted the only way out is in a box]], and [[LoyalToThePosition this ‘thing of ours’ comes before your blood family]].

A gun and a knife are put in front of the inductee, with the boss asking him if he would use these to defend his fellow members troubling situations — the inductee must ''must'' say yes. Then, the inductee’s trigger finger is pricked until blood came out. The blood would be put on the picture of a saint, then the picture is placed in the hands of the inductee. Then the boss lights the picture on fire and while the wiseguy juggles it in his hands, the boss says: "If you divulge the secrets of our life, your soul will burn in hell, just like this saint", asking the inductee to repeat this vow, known as Omertà. Then the newly made guy kisses the higher-ups on both cheeks.



* A potential inductee has to do a contract killing, also a change in previous policy. Prior to the Donnie Brasco scandal, only one had to be part of a murder, such as driving the getaway car. The killing proves that the inductee is fully committed to joining the Mafia, knows the risks and penalties involved if he gets out of line, and most importantly, it confirms he is ''NOT'' an undercover cop.
* The new member must have two sponsors, and they must have known him for some time. The sponsors know the associate and vouch for his street cred.

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* A potential inductee has to do a contract killing, also a change in previous policy. Prior to the Donnie Brasco scandal, only one had to be part of a murder, such as driving the getaway car. The killing proves that the inductee is fully committed to dedicated in joining the Mafia, knows the risks and penalties involved if he gets out of line, and most importantly, it confirms he is ''NOT'' an undercover cop.
* The new member must have two sponsors, and they must have known him for some time. The sponsors know the associate very well and vouch for his street cred.



* Dominick "Sonny Black" Napolitano's hands were chopped off because he (albeit unwittingly) introduced undercover FBI agent Joe "Donnie Brasco" Pistone to other wiseguys. As a warning, mobsters must not be seen shaking hands with cops.

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* Dominick "Sonny Black" Napolitano's hands were chopped off because he (albeit unwittingly) unknowingly) introduced undercover FBI agent Joe "Donnie Brasco" Pistone to other wiseguys. As a warning, mobsters must not be seen shaking hands with cops. Similarly, Anthony Mirra, the mobster who introduced Pistone to Benjamin Ruggiero and Sonny Black, was shot dead.



* Sam Giancana was shot once in the mouth and 5 times in the neck or under his chin as a message for silence. Joey Aiuppa may have feared he would spill the beans about the Chicago mob's operations or its involvement in the CIA's plots to kill Castro in front of a Senate panel.

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* Sam Giancana was shot once in the mouth and 5 times in the neck or under his chin as a message for silence. Joey Aiuppa and Tony Accardo may have feared he would spill the beans about the Chicago mob's operations or its involvement in the CIA's plots plot to kill Castro in front of a Senate panel.



* John Petrucelli, a Lucchese family associate, was murdered because he refused to kill Gus Farace, another mob associate who had killed DEA agent Everett Hatcher. A hood was placed over his head, which is a Sicilian message for "never keep secrets from your bosses".

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* John Petrucelli, a Lucchese family associate, was murdered because he refused to kill Gus Farace, another mob associate who had killed DEA agent Everett Hatcher. A hood was placed over his head, which is a Sicilian message for "never keep secrets from your bosses".bosses."
7th Apr '18 3:22:05 PM Njein
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* '''Acting Boss/Street Boss/Front Boss''' - A rank unique to the American Mafia, appearing in response to increasing law enforcement heat, rendering most "official" bosses and underbosses no longer at liberty to control the day-to-day operations of their families. This responsibility usually ends up being delegated to a capo (who still operates his own crew in the meantime), who can send a "messenger" to receive orders from the boss and pass along tribute. Even when the official boss is free, this structure is at times maintained as a veneer to prevent outsiders from knowing who's calling the shots - the Genovese family is a notable user of this since the 1970s and have been playing bait-and-switch with law enforcement using this tactic, as they would oftentimes prop up "dummy" bosses (usually high-ranking grunts) while the official boss remains hidden May sometimes in fact be the ''[[TheAllegedBoss de facto]]'' [[TheManBehindTheMan boss in]] ''[[TheManBehindTheMan all but name]]'', especially if the official boss is old, ill, or kept incommunicado in prison, and if the Street Boss would rather keep a low profile. (Note: This, essentially, was the rank [[Series/TheSopranos Tony Soprano]] occupied for most of the series.).

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* '''Acting Boss/Street Boss/Front Boss''' - A rank unique to the American Mafia, appearing in response to increasing law enforcement heat, rendering most "official" bosses and underbosses no longer at liberty to control the day-to-day operations of their families. This responsibility usually ends up being delegated to a capo (who still operates his own crew in the meantime), who can send a "messenger" to receive orders from the boss and pass along tribute. Even when the official boss is free, this structure is at times maintained as a veneer to prevent outsiders from knowing who's calling the shots - the Genovese family is a notable user of this since the 1970s and have been playing bait-and-switch with law enforcement using this tactic, as they would oftentimes prop up "dummy" bosses (usually high-ranking grunts) while the official boss remains hidden hidden. May sometimes in fact be the ''[[TheAllegedBoss de facto]]'' [[TheManBehindTheMan boss in]] ''[[TheManBehindTheMan all but name]]'', especially if the official boss is old, ill, or kept incommunicado in prison, and if the Street Boss would rather keep a low profile. (Note: This, essentially, was the rank [[Series/TheSopranos Tony Soprano]] occupied for most of the series.).
5th Apr '18 1:24:18 PM Njein
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A gun and a knife are put in front of the inductee, with the boss asking him if he would use these to defend his fellow members in times of trouble — the inductee must say yes. Then, the inductee’s trigger finger is pricked until blood came out. The blood would be put on the picture of a saint, then the picture is placed in the hands of the inductee. Then the boss lights the picture on fire and while the wiseguy juggles it in his hands, the boss says: "If you divulge the secrets of our life, your soul will burn in hell, just like this saint", asking the inductee to repeat this vow, known as Omertà. Then the newly made guy kisses the higher-ups on both cheeks.

to:

A gun and a knife are put in front of the inductee, with the boss asking him if he would use these to defend his fellow members in times of trouble troubling situations — the inductee must say yes. Then, the inductee’s trigger finger is pricked until blood came out. The blood would be put on the picture of a saint, then the picture is placed in the hands of the inductee. Then the boss lights the picture on fire and while the wiseguy juggles it in his hands, the boss says: "If you divulge the secrets of our life, your soul will burn in hell, just like this saint", asking the inductee to repeat this vow, known as Omertà. Then the newly made guy kisses the higher-ups on both cheeks.



* Angelo Bruno's consigliere Antonio Caponigro was brutally beaten up and killed by Vincent Gigante's crew in 1980 for killing his own boss. Dollar bills were stuffed in his mouth and anus as a sign that he was too greedy. Frank Sindone, John Simone, and Caponigro's brother-in-law Alfred Salerno also met a similar fate.

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* Angelo Bruno's consigliere Antonio Caponigro was brutally beaten up and killed by Vincent Gigante's crew in 1980 for killing his own boss.boss without the Mafia Commission's approval. Dollar bills were stuffed in his mouth and anus as a sign that he was too greedy. Frank Sindone, John Simone, and Caponigro's brother-in-law Alfred Salerno also met a similar fate.fates.



The Mafia is structured in a way so the higher-ups cannot be traced back to a single crime, allowing them to pass orders down the chain of command, while the grunts kick in a piece of whatever they earned to their capos and so on. This chain of command was introduced by Sal Maranzano in 1931, as a way to structure the mob along the Roman legions and to maintain order after the Castellammarese War, while the Commission was established by Luciano, who preferred to have a council of bosses governing the mob instead of a Mafia overlord ruling over them and demanding for tribute from other bosses, but retaining the structure Maranzano established.

to:

The Mafia is structured in a way so the higher-ups cannot be traced back to a single crime, allowing them to pass orders down the chain of command, while the grunts kick in a piece of whatever they earned to their capos and so on. This chain of command was introduced by Sal Maranzano in 1931, as a way to structure the mob along the Roman legions and to maintain order after the Castellammarese War, while the Commission was established by Luciano, who preferred to have a council of bosses governing the mob instead of a Mafia overlord ruling over them and demanding for tribute from other bosses, but retaining retained the structure Maranzano established.



* '''[[TheConsigliere Consigliere]]''' - [[RuleOfThree The third-in-command]] of a Mafia family, a consigliere is an advisor or counselor to the boss, with the additional responsibility of representing the family in Commission meetings. In theory, he is one of the few allowed to argue with the boss, when he thinks what the boss is doing could destroy the family. Most "consigliere" types in media (such as [[TropeMaker Tom Hagen]]) are actually based on Mob ''lawyers''. Though the Commission specified a counselor in each family to act as their eyes and ears, most RealLife mob bosses treated it as a lower-level position. Many families often use the position for a veteran who knows the ins and outs of the family's power, but does not wish to rise to power for whatever reason. Chicago would be a subversion, with the "consigliere" being a sort of "boss emeritus" aka capo consigliere (mobsters Tony Accardo and Paul Ricca held this title, and exercised [[TheManBehindTheMan behind-the-scenes control]] of the Chicago Outfit for nearly 50 years while letting lower-level capos such as Sam Giancana or Joey "Doves" Aiuppa hold the title of boss). Nicodemo Scarfo was another subversion, as he became the boss of the Philly Mob when the previous boss, Phil Testa, was assassinated while the underboss, Peter Casella, was exiled to Florida. At the time of Phil Testa's death, Scarfo was the number-three man. A consigliere generally has one soldier underneath him as an aide-de-camp and source of additional income; the lack of attachment to a crew supposedly makes him more "impartial" and obviously makes him less powerful. Like the underboss, the consigliere's power varies: some are mere flunkies for the boss, while others can be very influential.

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* '''[[TheConsigliere Consigliere]]''' - [[RuleOfThree The third-in-command]] [[EvilGenius of a Mafia family, a consigliere is family]], they're an advisor or counselor to the boss, with the additional responsibility of representing the family in Commission meetings. In theory, he is one of the few allowed to argue with the boss, when he thinks what the boss is doing could destroy the family. Most "consigliere" types in media (such as [[TropeMaker Tom Hagen]]) are actually based on Mob ''lawyers''. Though the Commission specified a counselor in each family to act as their eyes and ears, most RealLife mob bosses treated it as a lower-level position. Many families often use the position for a veteran who knows the ins and outs of the family's power, but does not wish to rise to power for whatever reason. Chicago would be a subversion, with the "consigliere" being a sort of "boss emeritus" aka capo consigliere (mobsters Tony Accardo and Paul Ricca held this title, and exercised [[TheManBehindTheMan behind-the-scenes control]] of the Chicago Outfit for nearly 50 years while letting lower-level capos such as Sam Giancana or Joey "Doves" Aiuppa hold the title of boss). Nicodemo Scarfo was another subversion, as he became the boss of the Philly Mob when the previous boss, Phil Testa, was assassinated while the underboss, Peter Casella, was exiled to Florida. At the time of Phil Testa's death, Scarfo was the number-three man. A consigliere generally has one soldier underneath him as an aide-de-camp and source of additional income; the lack of attachment to a crew supposedly makes him more "impartial" and obviously makes him less powerful. Like the underboss, the consigliere's power varies: some are mere flunkies for the boss, while others can be very influential.



* '''Associates''' - "''Giovane d'onore''" (man of honor), "''cugino''" (cousin), or "connected guy". An associate is a person who is not a soldier in a crime family, but works for them and shares in the execution of and profits from the criminal enterprise. In Italian criminal organizations, "associates" are usually members of the criminal organization who are not of Italian descent, or junior members who may someday rise to become soldiers for the family; this process can take a decade or longer depending upon the family and the individual's qualifications. It can also be tricky sometimes, as associates with a history of making serious money often command respect beyond their title. Distinctions are usually drawn between those associates loosely associated with the family, and those who have gone "on record" with a specific soldier or captain; the latter are more tightly controlled in their dealings and are usually candidates for membership. American mafiosi may refer to an associate as "a friend of mine", rather than "a friend of ours," a quiet warning to watch what is said in their presence since the associate is an outsider. ''Giovane d'onore'' is unique to the Camorra. Non-Italians will never go beyond this rank, but many of them, such as Meyer Lansky, Jimmy "the Gent" Burke, Bugsy Siegel, Bumpy Johnson, and Mickey Cohen were widely respected and even earned the respect of actual Mafia members. And although Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa could not become officially made because they were NYPD officers, they solicited their services to the New York mob as cold-blooded hitmen.

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* '''Associates''' - "''Giovane d'onore''" (man of honor), "''cugino''" (cousin), or "connected guy". An associate is a person who is not a soldier in a crime family, but works for them and shares in the execution of and profits from the criminal enterprise. In Italian criminal organizations, "associates" are usually members of the criminal organization who are not of Italian descent, or junior members who may someday rise to become soldiers for the family; this process can take a decade or longer depending upon the family and the individual's qualifications. It can also be tricky sometimes, as associates with a history of making serious money often command commanded respect beyond their title. Distinctions are usually drawn between those associates loosely associated with the family, and those who have gone "on record" with a specific soldier or captain; the latter are more tightly controlled in their dealings and are usually candidates for membership. American mafiosi may refer to an associate as "a friend of mine", rather than "a friend of ours," a quiet warning to watch what is said in their presence since the associate is an outsider. ''Giovane d'onore'' is unique to the Camorra. Non-Italians will never go beyond this rank, but many of them, such as Meyer Lansky, Jimmy "the Gent" Burke, Bugsy Siegel, Bumpy Johnson, and Mickey Cohen were widely respected and even earned the respect of actual Mafia members. And although Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa could not become officially made because they were NYPD officers, they solicited their services to the New York mob as cold-blooded hitmen.
29th Mar '18 9:10:07 AM Njein
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The Mafia is structured in a way so the higher-ups cannot be traced back to a single crime. This also allows them to pass orders down the chain of command, while the grunts kick in a piece of whatever they earned to their capos and so on.

to:

The Mafia is structured in a way so the higher-ups cannot be traced back to a single crime. This also allows crime, allowing them to pass orders down the chain of command, while the grunts kick in a piece of whatever they earned to their capos and so on.
on. This chain of command was introduced by Sal Maranzano in 1931, as a way to structure the mob along the Roman legions and to maintain order after the Castellammarese War, while the Commission was established by Luciano, who preferred to have a council of bosses governing the mob instead of a Mafia overlord ruling over them and demanding for tribute from other bosses, but retaining the structure Maranzano established.



* '''Capo di tutti i capi''' - the Boss of all Bosses in a particular area. More a media title than anything of significance in the American or Sicilian Mob; crime family bosses are seen as ''peers'' and don't pay tribute to or take orders from each other. The only boss to ever claim this title for himself was [[BigBadWannabe Salvatore Maranzano]] after [[WonTheWarLostThePeace "winning"]] the Castellammarese War in 1931, and he got to enjoy it for less than six months. Before long, Maranzano's nominal [[TheStarscream second-in-command]] [[MagnificentBastard Lucky]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda Luciano]] and his fellow [[YoungGun Young Turks]] thought [[ItsAllAboutMe Maranzano]] was [[EntitledBastard just as greedy and hidebound as Masseria was before him]], and they decided to [[DeadlyEuphemism retire]] the title, and [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder Maranzano along with it]]. An older term, ''capo consigliere'', denoted the first among equals of the New York bosses, who would arbitrate disputes between families; this went by the wayside during the Castellammarese War and was never reestablished afterwards.

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* '''Capo di tutti i capi''' - the Boss of all Bosses in a particular area. More a media title than anything of significance in the American or Sicilian Mob; crime family Mob, mob bosses are seen as ''peers'' and don't pay tribute to or take orders from each other. The only boss to ever claim this title for himself was [[BigBadWannabe Salvatore Maranzano]] after [[WonTheWarLostThePeace "winning"]] the Castellammarese War in 1931, and he got to enjoy it for less than six months. Before long, Maranzano's nominal [[TheStarscream second-in-command]] [[MagnificentBastard Lucky]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda Luciano]] and his fellow [[YoungGun Young Turks]] thought [[ItsAllAboutMe Maranzano]] was [[EntitledBastard just as greedy and hidebound as Masseria was before him]], NotSoDifferent from Masseria, and they decided to [[DeadlyEuphemism retire]] the title, and [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder Maranzano along with it]]. An older term, ''capo consigliere'', denoted the first among equals of the New York bosses, who would arbitrate disputes between families; this went by the wayside during the Castellammarese War and was never reestablished afterwards.



* '''Bonanno crime family''' - Has a huge presence in northern Brooklyn (Williamsburg, Bushwick, Knickerbocker Avenue and Greenpoint), southern Brooklyn (Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Bath Avenue), Queens (Ridgewood, Maspeth, Middle Village, Sunnyside and Metropolitan Avenue) and Staten Island with smaller crews and factions in Manhattan, the Bronx, Westchester, New Jersey, Florida and Canada (the family had a crew in Tucson, AZ until Joe Bonanno's forced retirement in the 1960s); the family also has a "Zip" faction. Though a mid-sized family (approx. size is between 150-200 made men), it sometimes held the number one spot, especially with the feds hammering down indictments on the other families in the 1990s. They're also the unruliest, owing to their independent streak since the Castellammarese War, as their generally disruptive behavior even threw them out of the Commission in the 1980s. Many of the family's earliest members came from Castellammare del Golfo, a seaside town in western Sicily, and settled down in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, including family namesake Joe Bonanno. It was also very tight-knit and considered to be the most Sicilian of the Five Families, partly because most of them were Castellammarese or had personal ties to that town. Eventually, the family came under the control of Salvatore Maranzano, who came to the United States after escaping from Mussolini's death squads in the 1920s and fancied himself as a mob version of Caesar, but Joe "the Boss" Masseria, the boss of the Morello gang, saw him as a growing threat to his power base, and tried to violently take over his gang's bootlegging rackets. Maranzano resisted, and this led to a [[MobWar bloody turf war]] that only ended with Masseria's death in 1931. With Masseria out of the way, Maranzano declared [[BigBadWannabe himself to be the Boss of all Bosses]], [[TheStarscream reneging on the peace deal]] he made with Lucky Luciano prior to Masseria's death to ensure peace between the two sides. [[ScrewTheRulesIMakeThem Soon enough, the power went into his head,]] and Maranzano wanted to kill Luciano, Costello, and Genovese. But Luciano somehow got wind of this, and using this info, alongside the fact that Maranzano was facing a potential tax audit like UsefulNotes/AlCapone before him, he makes a move before Maranzano gets to him, and the Boss of Bosses is eliminated on September 10, 1931 by hitmen posing as IRS agents. With the old guard eliminated, [[DragonAscendant Maranzano's protégé and ambitious underboss Joseph "Joe Bananas" Bonanno]] took over in late 1931. Bonanno even forged close ties with Joe Profaci, boss of the Profaci (now Colombo) crime family and with Steve Magaddino (his cousin and boss of the Buffalo family); he even became a major heroin trafficker despite blatantly denying any involvement. Yet like his mentor, [[BigBadWannabe he]] harbored even bigger ambitions and sought to become [[TheChessmaster the boss of bosses]] (after Vito Genovese failed in his own bid) by eliminating several of his rivals (notably Carlo Gambino and Tommy Lucchese) on the Commission in the 1960s, but it came to a sputtering halt when [[TheStarscream Joe]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda Colombo]], a capo in the Profaci family and the designated gunman, told about Bonanno's plan to Gambino and the rest of the Commission. Bonanno was ordered to come forward several times, but each time, he was a no-show, and simply went AWOL by faking his own kidnapping in late 1964; at the same time, he was facing a grand jury subpoena investigating organized crime in the aftermath of Apalachin and the Valachi hearings. While Bonanno later claimed in a TV interview that he was picked up by the Buffalo mob, it certainly was a {{Blatant Lie|s}}, as most of his fellow bosses such as Ray Patriarca, Sam [=DeCavalcante=], Angelo Bruno and Joe Colombo were caught off-guard by his kidnapping stunt. Also, many of his henchmen were angry that he took off. The Commission responded by replacing him with Gaspar [=DiGregorio=] in 1965, but it wasn't acknowledged by Bill Bonanno (Bonanno's son), triggering an [[MobWar internal turf war]] that only ended when Joe was forced to step down and retire to Tucson, AZ in late 1968. After Bonanno's forced retirement, the family was known to have a revolving door of weak and ineffectual bosses in the 1970s, and its troubles didn't end as Carmine Galante, a former [[DragonAscendant underboss]] to Bonanno and known drug pusher, attempted to seize control but was eliminated in 1979, allowing Philip "Rusty" Rastelli to regain full control of the family; he was originally installed as boss in 1973, but faced a lengthy prison sentence for racketeering. Rastelli then faced another challenge from [[AvengingTheVillain Galante loyalists]] who thought he was too weak to run the family and wanted to avenge Galante's death, but they too were eliminated by Rastelli supporters led by [[TheDragon Joe Massino, his protege and underboss.]] But the Donnie Brasco incident (in which an FBI agent infiltrated one of the crews and almost got made) did throw the Bonannos out of the Commission; other reasons for being kicked out included their generally disruptive behavior, the fact that they were actively selling heroin, and the infighting that's been going since Bonanno's ouster in 1968. Dominick "Sonny Black" Napolitano, whose crew was unwittingly infiltrated by Joe Pistone aka "Donnie Brasco", ended up dead and his hands were chopped off as a warning to others to never shake hands with cops, while several other wiseguys connected to Sonny Black were either dead, demoted in rank or imprisoned; by this time, they were largely regarded as a [[IncompetenceInc joke]] by both the FBI and wiseguys in the other families. But being stripped of their Commission seat actually worked to their favor as they were the only one of the Five Families to avoid an indictment on the Mafia Commission Trial, thus allowing them to quietly rebuild their lost power base while the other families were hammered down with indictments, lengthy prison sentences and [[TheInformant mobsters flipping left and right to save their skin.]] [[DragonAscendant Massino]], Rastelli's NumberTwo, took over as boss in 1991, and he quickly worked to rebuild the family to its former glory by the dawn of the millennium by adding new made members (bringing the family membership back to approx. 160 made men), and expanding into Wall Street scams, union racketeering and white-collar fraud; Massino was even proud that the family never had any stoolies since Joe Bonanno became boss in 1931. But this all came crashing down in 2002 when several of his button men [[TheStoolPigeon actually flipped]], especially [[NotWhatISignedUpFor Salvatore "Good-Looking Sal" Vitale]], who regarded Massino as a BigBrotherMentor to him, but once Massino gets out of jail in 1992, their relationship slowly became shaky to the point that Massino wanted him dead, and this became the catalyst for Vitale to [[TheInformant flip]] in 2003. Massino faced a lengthy prison sentence, and it was upgraded to the death penalty in 2004 after one of the murders he committed was traced back to him. In hopes of saving his life, he became the [[TheStoolPigeon first]] [[TheInformant official boss of a crime family to turn rat]], testifying against Vincent "Vinny Gorgeous" Basciano, his handpicked successor, in 2005. Once again, the Bonannos are now in shambles after [[TheInformant Massino flipped]] against his former mob colleagues and are still struggling to rebuild themselves in the aftermath. The family is now headed by Michael Mancuso, who took over as boss following Basciano's imprisonment in 2013.

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* '''Bonanno crime family''' - Has a huge presence in northern Brooklyn (Williamsburg, Bushwick, Knickerbocker Avenue and Greenpoint), southern Brooklyn (Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Bath Avenue), Queens (Ridgewood, Maspeth, Middle Village, Sunnyside and Metropolitan Avenue) and Staten Island with smaller crews and factions in Manhattan, the Bronx, Westchester, New Jersey, Florida and Canada (the family had a crew in Tucson, AZ Arizona until Joe Bonanno's forced retirement in the 1960s); the family also has a "Zip" faction. Though a mid-sized family (approx. size is between 150-200 140-160 made men), it they sometimes held the number one spot, especially with the feds hammering down indictments on the other families in the 1990s. They're also the unruliest, owing to their independent streak since the Castellammarese War, as their generally disruptive behavior even threw them out of the Commission in the 1980s. Many of the family's earliest members came from Castellammare del Golfo, a seaside town in western Sicily, and settled down in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, including family namesake Joe Bonanno. It was also very tight-knit and considered to be the most Sicilian of the Five Families, partly because most of them were Castellammarese or had personal ties to that town. Eventually, the family came under the control of Salvatore Maranzano, who came to the United States after escaping from Mussolini's death squads in the 1920s and fancied himself as a mob version of Caesar, but Joe "the Boss" Masseria, the boss of the Morello gang, saw him as a growing threat to his power base, and tried to violently take over his gang's bootlegging rackets. Maranzano resisted, and this led to a [[MobWar bloody turf war]] that only ended with Masseria's death in 1931. With Masseria out of the way, Maranzano declared [[BigBadWannabe himself to be the Boss of all Bosses]], [[TheStarscream reneging on the peace deal]] he made with Lucky Luciano prior to Masseria's death to ensure peace between the two sides. [[ScrewTheRulesIMakeThem Soon enough, the power went into his head,]] and Maranzano wanted to kill Luciano, Costello, and Genovese. But Luciano somehow got wind of this, and using this info, alongside the fact that Maranzano was facing a potential tax audit like UsefulNotes/AlCapone before him, he makes a move before Maranzano gets to him, and the Boss of Bosses is eliminated on September 10, 1931 by hitmen posing as IRS agents. With the old guard eliminated, [[DragonAscendant Maranzano's protégé and ambitious underboss Joseph "Joe Bananas" Bonanno]] took over in late 1931. Bonanno even forged close ties with Joe Profaci, boss of the Profaci (now Colombo) crime family and with Steve Magaddino (his cousin and boss of the Buffalo family); he even became a major heroin trafficker despite blatantly denying any involvement. Yet like his mentor, [[BigBadWannabe he]] harbored even bigger ambitions and sought to become [[TheChessmaster the boss of bosses]] (after Vito Genovese failed in his own bid) by eliminating several of his rivals (notably Carlo Gambino and Tommy Lucchese) on the Commission in the 1960s, but it came to a sputtering halt when [[TheStarscream Joe]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda Colombo]], a capo in the Profaci family and the designated gunman, told about Bonanno's plan to Gambino and the rest of the Commission. Bonanno was ordered to come forward several times, but each time, he was a no-show, and simply went AWOL by faking his own kidnapping in late 1964; at the same time, he was facing a grand jury subpoena investigating organized crime in the aftermath of Apalachin and the Valachi hearings. While Bonanno later claimed in a TV interview that he was picked up by the Buffalo mob, it certainly was a {{Blatant Lie|s}}, as most of his fellow bosses such as Ray Patriarca, Sam [=DeCavalcante=], Angelo Bruno and Joe Colombo were caught off-guard by his kidnapping stunt. Also, many of his henchmen were angry that he took off. The Commission responded by replacing him with Gaspar [=DiGregorio=] in 1965, but it wasn't acknowledged by Bill Bonanno (Bonanno's son), triggering an [[MobWar internal turf war]] that only ended when Joe was forced to step down and retire to Tucson, AZ in late 1968. After Bonanno's forced retirement, the family was known to have a revolving door of weak and ineffectual bosses in the 1970s, and its troubles didn't end as Carmine Galante, a former [[DragonAscendant underboss]] to Bonanno and known drug pusher, attempted to seize control but was eliminated in 1979, allowing Philip "Rusty" Rastelli to regain full control of the family; he was originally installed as boss in 1973, but faced a lengthy prison sentence for racketeering. Rastelli then faced another challenge from [[AvengingTheVillain Galante loyalists]] who thought he was too weak to run the family and wanted to avenge Galante's death, but they too were eliminated by Rastelli supporters led by [[TheDragon Joe Massino, his protege and underboss.]] But the Donnie Brasco incident (in which an FBI agent infiltrated one of the crews and almost got made) did throw the Bonannos out of the Commission; other reasons for being kicked out included their generally disruptive behavior, the fact that they were actively selling heroin, and the infighting that's been going since Bonanno's ouster in 1968. Dominick "Sonny Black" Napolitano, whose crew was unwittingly infiltrated by Joe Pistone aka "Donnie Brasco", ended up dead and his hands were chopped off as a warning to others to never shake hands with cops, while several other wiseguys connected tied to Sonny Black were either dead, killed, demoted in rank or imprisoned; by imprisoned. By this time, they were largely regarded as a [[IncompetenceInc joke]] by both the FBI and wiseguys in the other families. But families, but being stripped of their Commission seat actually worked to their favor benefitted them as they were the only one of the Five Families to avoid an indictment on the Mafia Commission Trial, thus allowing them to quietly rebuild their lost power base while the other families others were hammered down with indictments, lengthy long prison sentences sentences, and [[TheInformant mobsters flipping left and right to save their skin.]] [[DragonAscendant Massino]], Rastelli's NumberTwo, took over as boss in 1991, and he quickly worked to rebuild the family to its former glory by the dawn of the millennium by adding new made members (bringing the family membership back to approx. 160 made men), and expanding into Wall Street scams, union racketeering and white-collar fraud; Massino was even proud that the family never had any stoolies rats since Joe Bonanno became boss in 1931. But this all came crashing down in 2002 when several of his button men [[TheStoolPigeon actually flipped]], especially [[NotWhatISignedUpFor Salvatore "Good-Looking Sal" Vitale]], who regarded saw Massino as a BigBrotherMentor to him, but once Massino gets out of jail in 1992, their relationship slowly became shaky to the point that Massino wanted him dead, and this became the catalyst for Vitale to [[TheInformant flip]] in 2003. Massino faced a lengthy prison sentence, and it was upgraded to the death penalty in 2004 after one of the murders he committed was traced back to him. In hopes of saving his life, he became the [[TheStoolPigeon first]] [[TheInformant official boss of a crime family to turn rat]], testifying against Vincent "Vinny Gorgeous" Basciano, his handpicked successor, in 2005. Once again, the Bonannos are now in shambles after [[TheInformant Massino flipped]] against his former mob colleagues and are still struggling to rebuild themselves in the aftermath. The family is now headed by Michael Mancuso, who took over as boss following Basciano's imprisonment in 2013.



* '''Colombo crime family''' - Big presence in western Brooklyn (notably Red Hook, Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill, Park Slope, Gowanus and Carroll Gardens) and Staten Island, with smaller crews and factions in Manhattan, Queens, Long Island and Florida; also has a crew based in Los Angeles (the family used to have a faction in New Jersey, but that has been disbanded since the 1990s). Currently the weakest of the Five Families thanks to numerous informants (current membership is around 110-130 made men), ineffectual and/or publicity-hungry bosses and internal wars since the 1960s (this family used to be much stronger thanks to its ties with the Bonannos). Originally a small and fairly-well organized gang of Sicilian mafiosi hailing from the town of Villabate (not far from Palermo, Sicily), the crime family was originally known as the Profaci crime family after the first boss, Giuseppe Profaci, who established good ties with Joe Bonanno, the boss of the Bonanno crime family at the time. [[BadBoss But, he was known to be a penny-pincher]] [[ScrewTheRulesIMakeThem and notoriously greedy, as he even demanded a $25 monthly tribute kicked up to him, and his tightfisted attitude]] led to the [[MobWar first family war]] in the late 1950s. It was ignited by Joe Gallo, a renegade capo who wanted a greater share of the loot Profaci kept for himself; at first, it seemed that Gallo would win this battle because he had secured the backing of Carlo Gambino and Tommy Lucchese, Profaci's ArchEnemies on the Commission, but soon enough, most of the family's 150+ wiseguys backed Profaci. [[TheStarscream Carmine Persico]], a Gallo loyalist whos would eventually become boss, later switched sides and defected to the Profaci faction when he realized Gallo was the wrong horse to bet upon, knowing that Profaci had the money, the rackets, the arms and the men to keep this battle going. After secretly switching sides, Persico decided to betray the Gallo crew by trying to strangle Joe Gallo's younger brother Larry to death at a bar, but he survived the murder attempt thanks to a passing policeman who witnessed the attack, forcing Persico and his men to flee, and as a result of this botched hit, Persico was nicknamed "the Snake" for betraying the Gallo crew. Profaci died of cancer in 1962, but his underboss [[DragonAscendant Joe]] [[DragonInChief Magliocco]] continued the battle against the remaining renegades. The war ended with Gallo's arrest in 1963, but Magliocco soon became embroiled in an audacious plan allegedly hatched by [[BigBadWannabe Joe Bonanno]] to eliminate several of their rivals and take over the mob. However, their plans sputtered to an abrupt halt when [[MagnificentBastard Joe]] [[TheStarscream Colombo]], another capo in the Profaci family, exposed their plot to the Commission. For his reward, Colombo took over the family in 1963 after Magliocco was forced to step down (since the other bosses knew that he had several health issues and would die anytime soon, they let him go but ordered him to retire and pay a $50,000 fine; Bonanno was also ordered to come forward several times but was a no-show despite being asked to explain, and he fled to avoid being killed in 1964 by [[FakedKidnapping staging a phony kidnapping]]); with Gambino's backing, he changed the family name from Profaci to Colombo. But to Gambino's dismay, Colombo was too publicity-friendly, as he claimed the FBI was falsely targeting Italian-Americans by forming a political group to decry the FBI's actions, and allied with Meir Kahane and the Jewish Defense League. Colombo's antics later came back to bite him when he was later gunned down during a rally at Columbus Circle in 1971, and relapsed into a coma which he never recovered in 1978. This led to another internal turf war, and the family pinned the blame on the Gallos, though it was speculated that Colombo's rivals, including Gambino, ordered it; Gallo was later shot to death in 1972 while dining with his family, thus ending the war, with the remaining Gallo crew later joining the Genoveses. [[DragonAscendant Carmine Persico]] took over the family in 1972, but spent much of his reign while imprisoned, and used a series of acting bosses and ruling panels to maintain his grip on the ffamily from prison. Persico and his acting boss, [[DragonInChief Gennaro "Jerry Lang" Langella]], were later indicted on the Mafia Commission Case in 1986, facing 100+ year life sentences; to ensure that he remains as the official boss, Persico even groomed his son Alphonse] to become the acting boss, but Allie Boy was convicted in a separate trial. Persico then nominates Victor Orena, his cousin and a capo to become the [[MookLieutenant street boss]], [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder but]] [[TheStarscream Orena harbored]] [[BigBadWannabe bigger]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda ambitions.]] The family would split again for a 3rd time in the early 1990s when Orena, who felt Persico was out of touch and was planning to do a TV interview (much like how Joe Bonanno did one in 1983 after writing a tell-all book about his life, and how the book was later used in the Mafia Commission Trial), tried to take over as boss. While Persico won the battle after [[WonTheWarLostThePeace 12 deaths (including three innocent bystanders), 18 associates missing and 12 of his men turning informer (and still runs the battered family from behind bars)]], the Colombos have been weakened in recent years because of numerous informants and more government crackdowns in the 2000s.

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* '''Colombo crime family''' - Big presence in western Brooklyn (notably Red Hook, Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill, Park Slope, Gowanus and Carroll Gardens) and Staten Island, with smaller crews and factions in Manhattan, Queens, Long Island and Florida; also has a crew based in Los Angeles (the family used to have a faction in New Jersey, but that has been disbanded since the 1990s). Currently the weakest of the Five Families thanks to numerous informants (current membership is around 110-130 made men), ineffectual and/or publicity-hungry bosses bosses, and internal wars since the 1960s (this family 1960s, the Colombos used to be much stronger thanks to its their ties with the Bonannos). Bonanno family. Originally a small and fairly-well organized gang of Sicilian mafiosi hailing from the town of Villabate (not far from Palermo, Sicily), Palermo), the crime family was originally known as the Profaci crime family after the first boss, Giuseppe Profaci, who established good ties with Joe Bonanno, the boss of the Bonanno crime family at the time. [[BadBoss But, But he was known to be a penny-pincher]] [[ScrewTheRulesIMakeThem and notoriously greedy, as he even demanded a $25 monthly tribute kicked up to him, and his tightfisted attitude]] led to the [[MobWar first family war]] in the late 1950s. It was ignited by Joe Gallo, a renegade capo who wanted a greater share of the loot Profaci kept for himself; at first, it seemed that Gallo would win this battle because he had secured the backing of Carlo Gambino and Tommy Lucchese, Profaci's ArchEnemies on the Commission, but soon enough, most of the family's 150+ wiseguys backed Profaci. [[TheStarscream Carmine Persico]], a Gallo loyalist whos would eventually become boss, later switched sides and defected to the Profaci faction when he realized Gallo was the wrong horse to bet upon, knowing that Profaci had the money, the rackets, the arms and the men to keep this battle going. After secretly switching sides, Persico decided to betray the Gallo crew by trying to strangle Joe Gallo's younger brother Larry to death at a bar, but he survived the murder attempt thanks to a passing policeman who witnessed the attack, forcing Persico and his men to flee, and as a result of this botched hit, hit and his treachery, Persico was nicknamed "the Snake" for betraying the Gallo crew. Profaci died of cancer in 1962, but his underboss [[DragonAscendant Joe]] [[DragonInChief Magliocco]] continued the battle against the remaining renegades. The war ended with Gallo's arrest in 1963, but Magliocco soon became embroiled in an audacious plan allegedly hatched by [[BigBadWannabe Joe Bonanno]] to eliminate several of their rivals and take over the mob.Mafia Commission. However, their plans sputtered to an abrupt halt when [[MagnificentBastard Joe]] [[TheStarscream Colombo]], another capo in the Profaci family, exposed their plot to the Commission. For his reward, Colombo took over the family in 1963 after Magliocco was forced to step down (since the other bosses knew that he had several health issues and would die anytime soon, they let him go but ordered him to retire and pay a $50,000 fine; Bonanno was also ordered to come forward several times but was a no-show despite being asked to explain, and he fled to avoid being killed in 1964 by [[FakedKidnapping staging a phony kidnapping]]); with Gambino's backing, he changed the family name from Profaci to Colombo. But to Gambino's dismay, Colombo was too publicity-friendly, as he claimed the FBI was falsely targeting Italian-Americans by forming a political group to decry the FBI's actions, and allied went so far to ally with Meir Kahane and the Jewish Defense League. Colombo's antics later came back to bite him him, when he was later gunned down during a rally at Columbus Circle in 1971, and relapsed into a coma which he never recovered in 1978. This led to another internal turf war, and the family pinned the blame on the Gallos, though it was speculated that Colombo's rivals, including Gambino, ordered it; Gallo was later shot to death in 1972 while dining with his family, thus ending the war, with the remaining Gallo crew members later joining the Genoveses. [[DragonAscendant Carmine Persico]] took over the family in 1972, but spent much of his reign while imprisoned, and used a series of acting bosses and ruling panels to maintain his grip on the ffamily from prison. Persico and his acting boss, [[DragonInChief Gennaro "Jerry Lang" Langella]], were later indicted on the Mafia Commission Case in 1986, facing 100+ year life sentences; to ensure that he remains as the official boss, Persico even groomed his son Alphonse] Alphonse to become the acting boss, boss and his successor, but Allie Boy was convicted in a separate trial. Persico then nominates Victor Orena, his cousin and a capo to become the [[MookLieutenant street boss]], [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder but]] [[TheStarscream Orena harbored]] [[BigBadWannabe bigger]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda ambitions.]] The family would split again for a 3rd time in the early 1990s when Orena, who felt Persico was out of touch and was planning to do a TV interview (much like how Joe Bonanno did one in 1983 after writing a tell-all book about his life, and how the book was later used in the Mafia Commission Trial), tried to take over as boss. While Persico won the battle after [[WonTheWarLostThePeace 12 deaths (including three innocent bystanders), 18 associates missing and 12 of his men turning informer (and still runs the battered family from behind bars)]], the Colombos have been weakened in recent years because of numerous informants and more government crackdowns in the 2000s. Many have commented about how the Colombos were weakened over the years because of Persico's greed and treachery.



* '''Gambino crime family''' - Big presence in southern and western Brooklyn (Bay Ridge, Bath Beach, Gravesend, Bensonhurst and the Brooklyn docks), Queens (Howard Beach, the Rockaways and JFK Airport), Long Island and Staten Island, with smaller crews and factions in Manhattan, the Bronx, Westchester, New England, New Jersey, California and Florida (the family once had a crew based in Baltimore until the 1990s); the family also has a big "Zip" faction (the Cherry Hill Gambinos). Once the biggest crime family (under [[TheChessmaster Carlo Gambino's]] reign, it had around 450 made men, but that has since dipped to approx. 225-250 made men in the 1990s), it is now a former shell of itself due to [[ItsAllAboutMe John Gotti's media antics]] and subsequent imprisonment in 1992. The family had its origins in the large Brooklyn faction of the Morello (now Genovese) crime family, and broke off into its own family. It first came to prominence under the Mangano brothers (Phil and Vincent), who held an iron fist over the Brooklyn waterfront, thanks to their underboss [[DragonWithAnAgenda Albert]] [[TheStarscream Anastasia]], but the relationship between Anastasia and the Mangano brothers was an uneasy one from the start. Anastasia later took over as boss after eliminating the Mangano brothers in 1951 (Phil's body was found in a swamp in Brooklyn, while Vincent vanished without a trace), and was known to be a ruthless boss, thanks to his prior experience as the head of MurderInc in the 1930s. However, Anastasia's past would come back to bite him, as he had murdered his own boss without the Commission's approval, and he was assassinated in a famous gangland hit in 1957 orchestrated by [[BigBadDuumvirate Carlo Gambino and Vito Genovese]]. [[TheStarscream Carlo Gambino]], [[DragonWithAnAgenda the family's namesake and Anastasia's underboss]], later took over as boss and led it to prosperous times, thanks [[VillainousFriendship to his ties with Tommy Lucchese, the boss of the Lucchese family]], and both of them would further solidify this alliance into a relationship when Gambino's son Thomas married one of Lucchese's daughters in 1962. Gambino eventually became the Mafia's '''de facto''' [[TheChessmaster boss of all bosses]] as the other families in New York and elsewhere were facing various troubles, such as illness (for the Lucchese family), internal warfare (within the Bonanno and Colombo families) and legal problems (within the Genovese family and Chicago Outfit). But before his death in 1976, Gambino made his biggest mistake by naming his cousin Paul Castellano as his heir and successor over his underboss [[TheDragon Neil Dellacroce]], who was the most likely candidate for succeeding Gambino, but was imprisoned at the time for tax evasion, effectively splitting the family into two factions; the pro-Dellacroce faction, which was led by John Gotti, believed that Castellano did not earn his stripes on the street, and was seen as a pampered [[YesMan yes-man]] who inherited the position simply because of his blood ties to Gambino despite being a big earner for the family. Though he disapproved of Gambino's choice of picking his cousin as boss, Dellacroce still managed to keep the peace between the two factions for the next 9 years until his death from cancer in 1985. But despite this, there were simmering tensions between Gotti and Castellano, as the latter became increasingly greedy; Castellano even began to demand a 15% tribute (instead of the usual ten) in some cases, and though there was an unofficial "ban" placed by Gambino, who ordered his men not to get caught dealing drugs, this was often ignored as even Castellano often turned a blind eye to this "ban" by accepting drug payments from several of his capos, including the Zips (imported Sicilian mafiosi), and from the Gotti and Roy [=DeMeo=] crews. By this time, the federal government was initiating a crackdown on organized crime, especially the Mafia — it was spearheaded by Rudolph Giuliani, an aggressive US Attorney who saw the mob with nothing but contempt — and began to actively target the Five Families' leadership, with Castellano topping the list because he was the Mafia Commission's chairman at the time. By 1985, Castellano was in a slew of problems, ranging from legal pressure from the federal government, personal problems with his family after they found out about his affair with his maid, and dissension among the ranks within the Gambinos, especially from the Dellacroce/blue-collar faction. After Dellacroce's death from cancer in December 1985, Castellano was gunned down outside Sparks Steak House a few weeks later on the orders of Gotti, who was reportedly angry that Castellano was a no-show at his mentor Dellacroce's funeral; other reasons included Castellano's greed, the prospect of Castellano ratting out his henchmen and bosses in the wake of the Commission case because he often badmouthed them behind their backs, and a fear that he might kill Gotti in a dispute over the family's unofficial "ban" on drug dealing. Gotti took over after Castellano's assassination, but his tenure as boss was marred by frequent indictments as he was under intense FBI scrutiny since the 1970s, assassination attempts by rivals who were outraged at the unsanctioned hit on Castellano, and [[ItsAllAboutMe his media-hungry profile.]] By the early 1990s, [[NotWhatISignedOnFor Sammy Gravano (his underboss)]], [[DefectorFromDecadence fed up]] with Gotti's antics, [[TheStoolPigeon decided to]] [[TheInformant cooperate with the FBI.]] Gotti was imprisoned for life in 1992 after ducking several attempts by federal prosecutors to have him indicted, and subsequently died of cancer 10 years later; his brother Peter took over as boss in 2002, but he too was imprisoned for life, and still runs the family from behind bars. Since then, the family has been quietly rebuilding its former shell after John Gotti's demise.

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* '''Gambino crime family''' - Big presence in southern and western Brooklyn (Bay Ridge, Bath Beach, Gravesend, Bensonhurst and the Brooklyn docks), Queens (Howard Beach, the Rockaways and JFK Airport), Long Island and Staten Island, with smaller crews and factions in Manhattan, the Bronx, Westchester, New England, New Jersey, California and Florida (the family once had a crew based in Baltimore until the 1990s); the family also has a big "Zip" faction (the Cherry Hill Gambinos). Once the biggest crime family (under [[TheChessmaster Carlo Gambino's]] reign, it had around 450 made men, but that has since dipped to approx. 225-250 made men in the 1990s), it is now a former shell of itself due to [[ItsAllAboutMe John Gotti's media antics]] and subsequent imprisonment in 1992. The family had its origins in the large Brooklyn faction of the Morello (now Genovese) crime family, and broke off into its own family. It first came to prominence under the Mangano brothers (Phil and Vincent), who held an iron fist over the Brooklyn waterfront, thanks to their underboss [[DragonWithAnAgenda Albert]] [[TheStarscream Anastasia]], but the relationship between Anastasia and the Mangano brothers was an uneasy one from the start. Anastasia later took over as boss after eliminating the Mangano brothers in 1951 (Phil's body was found in a swamp in Brooklyn, while Vincent vanished without a trace), and was known to be a ruthless boss, thanks to his prior experience as the head of MurderInc in the 1930s. However, Anastasia's past would come back to bite him, as he had murdered his own boss without the Commission's approval, and he was assassinated in a famous gangland hit in 1957 orchestrated by [[BigBadDuumvirate Carlo Gambino and Vito Genovese]]. [[TheStarscream Carlo Gambino]], [[DragonWithAnAgenda the family's namesake and Anastasia's underboss]], later took over as boss and led it to prosperous times, thanks [[VillainousFriendship to his ties with Tommy Lucchese, the boss of the Lucchese family]], and both of them would further solidify this alliance into a relationship when Gambino's son Thomas married one of Lucchese's daughters in 1962. Gambino eventually became the Mafia's '''de facto''' [[TheChessmaster boss of all bosses]] as the other families in New York and elsewhere were facing various troubles, such as illness (for the Lucchese family), internal warfare (within the Bonanno and Colombo families) and legal problems (within the Genovese family and Chicago Outfit). But before his death in 1976, Gambino made his biggest mistake by naming his cousin Paul Castellano as his heir and successor over his underboss [[TheDragon Neil Dellacroce]], who was the most likely candidate for succeeding Gambino, but was imprisoned at the time for tax evasion, effectively splitting the family into two factions; the pro-Dellacroce faction, which was led by John Gotti, believed that Castellano did not earn his stripes on the street, and was seen as a pampered [[YesMan yes-man]] who simply inherited the position simply because of his blood ties to Gambino despite being a big earner for the family. Though he disapproved of Gambino's choice of picking his cousin as boss, Dellacroce still managed to keep the peace between the two factions for the next 9 years until his death from cancer in 1985. But despite this, there were simmering tensions between Gotti and Castellano, as the latter became increasingly greedy; Castellano even began to demand a 15% tribute (instead of the usual ten) in some cases, and though there was an unofficial "ban" placed by Gambino, who ordered his men not to get caught dealing drugs, this was often ignored as even Castellano often turned a blind eye to this "ban" by accepting drug payments from several of his capos, including the Zips (imported Sicilian mafiosi), and from the Gotti and Roy [=DeMeo=] crews. By this time, the federal government was initiating a crackdown on organized crime, especially the Mafia — it was spearheaded by Rudolph Giuliani, an aggressive US Attorney who saw the mob with nothing but contempt — and began to actively target the Five Families' leadership, with Castellano topping the list because he was the Mafia Commission's chairman at the time. By 1985, Castellano was in a slew of problems, ranging from legal pressure from the federal government, personal problems with his family after they found out about his affair with his maid, and dissension among the ranks within the Gambinos, especially from the Dellacroce/blue-collar faction. After Dellacroce's death from cancer in December 1985, Castellano was gunned down outside Sparks Steak House a few weeks later on the orders of Gotti, who was reportedly angry that Castellano was a no-show at his mentor Dellacroce's funeral; other reasons included Castellano's greed, the prospect of Castellano ratting out his henchmen and bosses in the wake of the Commission case because he often badmouthed them behind their backs, and a fear that he might kill Gotti in a dispute over the family's unofficial "ban" on drug dealing. Gotti took over after Castellano's assassination, but his tenure as boss was marred by frequent indictments as he was under intense FBI scrutiny since the 1970s, assassination attempts by rivals who were outraged at the unsanctioned hit on Castellano, and [[ItsAllAboutMe his media-hungry profile.]] By the early 1990s, [[NotWhatISignedOnFor Sammy Gravano (his underboss)]], [[DefectorFromDecadence fed up]] with Gotti's antics, [[TheStoolPigeon decided to]] [[TheInformant cooperate with the FBI.]] Gotti was imprisoned for life in 1992 after ducking several attempts by federal prosecutors to have him indicted, and subsequently died of cancer 10 years later; his brother Peter took over as boss in 2002, but he too was imprisoned for life, and still runs the family from behind bars. Since then, the family has been quietly rebuilding its former shell after John Gotti's demise.



* '''Genovese crime family''' - Large presence in Manhattan (Little Italy, 116th Street/East Harlem, Lower East Side, Greenwich Village and the Manhattan/New Jersey waterfronts), the Bronx (Morris Park, Pelham Bay and Arthur Avenue), Westchester, northern New Jersey and Connecticut, with smaller crews and factions in Queens, Brooklyn and Florida (the family also has a small crew in Springfield, Massachusetts). Regarded as the Ivy League of the Mafia, the family is still the strongest and biggest of the Five Families (the family size has historically varied from 250 to 470 made men; current membership is around 275-300 made men). The oldest of the New York families, it was known as the Morello crime family and eventually came under the control of Morello capo [[BadBoss Giuseppe "Joe the Boss" Masseria]], who had a penchant for violence and was notoriously greedy. His heavy-handed attempts to strong-arm and control the other Italian gangs, especially the Williamsburg-based Castellammarese gang, led to a bloody turf war in 1928; the Castellammarese War claimed at least 150+ lives and dragged on until Masseria was gunned down at a Coney Island restaurant in 1931. [[BigBadWannabe Salvatore]] [[EntitledBastard Maranzano]], now the nominal victor of this turf war, [[ItsAllAboutMe immediately wasted no time into reorganizing the Five Families (and by extension, the entire Mafia) under his control by declaring himself the boss of bosses;]] the [[YoungGun Young Turks]], led by an upstart gangster named [[MagnificentBastard Charles]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda "Lucky" Luciano]](the [[YoungGun Young Turks were a younger generation of Americanized mafiosi]], and were swayed by Maranzano into fighting for him), realized that Maranzano was much [[ScrewTheRulesIMakeThem greedier]] [[ItsAllAboutMe than they originally thought.]] So, they decided that the boss of all bosses had to go, and Luciano takes over in September of 1931 after Maranzano was eliminated. With the old guard out of the way, he can now consolidate his own power base. Luciano then revolutionized the American Mafia by forming a Mafia Commission (and becoming its 1st chairman) to settle disputes and encouraging the other bosses to work with each other instead of "hitting the mattresses". However, he faced an indictment from Thomas Dewey for running a prostitution ring in 1937 and was deported back to Italy in 1946, where he worked with the Sicilian mafia to establish an international drug trafficking empire. The family was taken over by Frank Costello, Luciano's consigliere and a key political fixer; he had huge gambling and white-collar rackets in New York City and was craving to go legitimate. It was once said that no municipal judge, official or politician could accept their position without securing Costello's personal backing. He even had behind-the-scenes influence over Tammany Hall (the local Democratic political machine) through proxies such as Carmine [=DeSapio=] and Robert Wagner. But the Kefauver hearings in 1951 were aimed at proving that a secret Italian organization based on strong family ties was behind a big organized crime conspiracy in the United States, and Costello's reputation took a big hit because of this. By the late 1950s, he faced a growing threat from [[DragonWithAnAgenda Vito Genovese]], who was Luciano's former underboss and was silently eliminating allies of Costello after returning to the United States in 1945 (notably Albert Anastasia, head of the Mangano family and William "Willie Moore" Moretti, Costello's underboss). By 1957, Genovese, with the sufficient backing of [[CoDragons Carlo Gambino and Tommy Lucchese]], then ordered a hit on Costello in May, though he manages to survive the hit by getting away with only a scalp wound thanks to the gunman's unintentional warning, and steps down to avoid further bloodshed. Genovese, taking over after Costello's retirement, then orders a hit on rival mob boss Albert Anastasia and called for an emergency meeting of mob bosses to explain the [[EvilPowerVacuum growing power vacuum]] in New York that's been going on since the botched hit on Costello, to consolidate his power base, and as well as to discuss the growing drug trade in late 1957. But, [[CriminalConvention the Apalachin Meeting]] turned into a big fiasco as it exposed the Mafia to outside scrutiny for the first time, and the other bosses (notably [[TheStarscream Gambino and Lucchese,]] who switched sides and supported Costello, Luciano and Lansky) had him falsely implicated on a drug charge. Later, in 1963, a low-level mob soldier named [[TheStoolPigeon Joe Valachi]] became the first made man to [[TheInformant flip and testify about the American Mafia's inner workings;]] Valachi feared Genovese ordered a hit on him, hence his rationale to cooperate with federal authorities. Genovese continued to rule the family from prison (via ruling panels and acting bosses) until his death in 1969. And though the family was run by a series of "dummy" bosses after Genovese's death, Philip "Benny Squint" Lombardo (the family's street boss since 1962) was regarded as the ''[[TheChessmaster de facto]]'' [[TheManBehindTheMan boss and]] [[TheAllegedBoss had the final say in family matters, especially since 1969.]] Ill health forces Lombardo to step down and name [[DragonAscendant Vincent "Chin" Gigante]], the alleged gunman behind the Costello hit, as his successor in 1981; [[TheAllegedBoss Gigante]] later names [[TheManBehindTheMan Anthony "Fat Tony" Salerno as his "dummy" boss]], and goes a step further shielding himself from law enforcement scrutiny by [[ObfuscatingDisability feigning]] [[ObfuscatingInsanity insanity]] [[PlayingSick and]] [[ObfuscatingStupidity pretending to have a low IQ]]; this ruse worked until 1997, when he was imprisoned for multiple racketeering and murder charges. He ran the family from prison until his death in 2005, and since his death, it is implied the family now uses a ruling panel of capos to manage its daily affairs and to avoid FBI attention, with [[TheManBehindTheMan Liborio "Barney" Bellomo (a protege of Vincent Gigante and the head capo of the 116th Street crew)]] pretty much having [[TheAllegedBoss the final say on family matters]], in a matter that's reminiscent of Philip Lombardo in the 1970s.

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* '''Genovese crime family''' - Large presence in Manhattan (Little Italy, 116th Street/East Harlem, Lower East Side, Greenwich Village and the Manhattan/New Jersey waterfronts), the Bronx (Morris Park, Pelham Bay and Arthur Avenue), Westchester, northern New Jersey and Connecticut, with smaller crews and factions in Queens, Brooklyn and Florida (the family also has a small crew in Springfield, Massachusetts). Regarded as the Ivy League of the Mafia, the family is still the strongest and biggest of the Five Families (the family size has historically varied from 250 to 470 made men; current membership is around 275-300 made men). The oldest of the New York families, it was known as the Morello crime family and eventually came under the control of Morello capo [[BadBoss Giuseppe "Joe the Boss" Masseria]], who had a penchant for violence and was notoriously greedy. His heavy-handed attempts to strong-arm and control the other Italian gangs, especially the Williamsburg-based Castellammarese gang, led to a bloody turf war in 1928; the Castellammarese War claimed at least 150+ lives and dragged on until Masseria was gunned down at a Coney Island restaurant in 1931. [[BigBadWannabe Salvatore]] [[EntitledBastard Maranzano]], now the nominal victor of this turf war, [[ItsAllAboutMe immediately wasted no time into reorganizing the Five Families (and by extension, the entire Mafia) under his control by declaring himself the boss of bosses;]] the [[YoungGun Young Turks]], led by an upstart gangster named [[MagnificentBastard Charles]] [[DragonWithAnAgenda "Lucky" Luciano]](the [[YoungGun Young Turks were a younger generation of Americanized mafiosi]], and were swayed by Maranzano into fighting for him), realized that Maranzano was much [[ScrewTheRulesIMakeThem greedier]] [[ItsAllAboutMe than they originally thought.]] So, they decided that the boss of all bosses had to go, and Luciano takes over in September of 1931 after Maranzano was eliminated. With the old guard out of the way, he can now consolidate his own power base. Luciano then revolutionized the American Mafia by forming a Mafia Commission (and becoming its 1st chairman) to settle disputes and encouraging the other bosses to work with each other instead of "hitting the mattresses". However, he faced an indictment from Thomas Dewey for running a prostitution ring in 1937 and was deported back to Italy in 1946, where he worked with the Sicilian mafia to establish an international drug trafficking empire. The family was taken over by Frank Costello, Luciano's consigliere and a key political fixer; he had huge gambling and white-collar rackets in New York City and was craving to go legitimate. It was once said that no municipal judge, official or politician could accept their position without securing Costello's personal backing. He even had behind-the-scenes influence over Tammany Hall (the local Democratic political machine) through proxies such as Carmine [=DeSapio=] and Robert Wagner. But the Kefauver hearings in 1951 were aimed at proving that a secret Italian organization based on strong family ties was behind a big organized crime conspiracy in the United States, and Costello's reputation took a big hit because of this. By the late 1950s, he faced a growing threat from [[DragonWithAnAgenda Vito Genovese]], who was Luciano's former underboss and was silently eliminating allies of Costello after returning to the United States in 1945 (notably Albert Anastasia, head of the Mangano family and William "Willie Moore" Moretti, Costello's underboss). By 1957, Genovese, with the sufficient backing of [[CoDragons Carlo Gambino and Tommy Lucchese]], then ordered a hit on Costello in May, though he manages to survive the hit by getting away with only a scalp wound thanks to the gunman's unintentional warning, and steps down to avoid further bloodshed. Genovese, taking over after Costello's retirement, then orders a hit on rival mob boss Albert Anastasia and called for an emergency meeting of mob bosses to explain the [[EvilPowerVacuum growing power vacuum]] in New York that's been going on since the botched hit on Costello, to consolidate his power base, and as well as to discuss the growing drug trade in late 1957. But, But [[CriminalConvention the Apalachin Meeting]] turned into a big fiasco as it exposed the Mafia to outside scrutiny for the first time, and the other bosses (notably [[TheStarscream Gambino and Lucchese,]] who switched sides and supported Costello, Luciano and Lansky) had him falsely implicated on a drug charge. Later, in 1963, To make matters worse, a low-level mob soldier named [[TheStoolPigeon Joe Valachi]] became the first made man to [[TheInformant flip and testify about the American Mafia's inner workings;]] Valachi feared Genovese ordered a hit on him, hence his rationale to cooperate with federal authorities. authorities in 1963. Genovese continued to rule the family from prison (via via ruling panels and acting bosses) bosses until his death in 1969. And though the family was run by a series of "dummy" bosses after Genovese's death, Philip "Benny Squint" Lombardo (the Lombardo, the family's street boss since 1962) 1962, was regarded as the ''[[TheChessmaster de facto]]'' [[TheManBehindTheMan boss and]] [[TheAllegedBoss had the final say in family matters, especially since 1969.]] Lombardo, a low-key man who chose to stay in the shadows, preferred to delegate authority to high-ranking capos to insulate himself from the FBI. Ill health forces Lombardo to step down and name [[DragonAscendant Vincent "Chin" Gigante]], the alleged gunman behind the Costello hit, as his successor in 1981; [[TheAllegedBoss Gigante]] later names [[TheManBehindTheMan Anthony "Fat Tony" Salerno as his "dummy" boss]], and goes a step further shielding himself from law enforcement scrutiny by [[ObfuscatingDisability feigning]] [[ObfuscatingInsanity insanity]] [[PlayingSick and]] [[ObfuscatingStupidity pretending to have a low IQ]]; this ruse worked until 1997, when he was imprisoned for multiple racketeering and murder charges. He ran the family from prison until his death in 2005, and since his death, it is implied the family now uses a ruling panel of capos to manage its daily affairs and to avoid FBI attention, with [[TheManBehindTheMan Liborio "Barney" Bellomo (a protege of Vincent Gigante and the head capo of the 116th Street crew)]] pretty much having [[TheAllegedBoss the final say on family matters]], in a matter that's reminiscent of Philip Lombardo in the 1970s.
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