A Pennsylvania man was sentenced at present to 5 years in jail for conspiring to take part within the affairs of a racketeering enterprise, together with making extortionate extensions of credit score and conducting an unlawful playing enterprise, all whereas serving because the underboss of the Philadelphia mafia household.
In response to courtroom paperwork, Steven Mazzone, 59, of Philadelphia, was the underboss of the Philadelphia organized crime household of La Cosa Nostra (LCN), aka the “mafia,” and directed an unlimited community of legal exercise that spanned Philadelphia and elements of New Jersey. Because the underboss, Mazzone set guidelines for LCN members and associates within the Philadelphia mafia and picked up earnings from criminal activity that was siphoned upward via the LCN command construction. Mazzone additionally organized the composition of smaller teams of members and associates, or “crews,” which reported to center managers, or “capos,” who in flip reported to Mazzone.
“The Division of Justice has lengthy been dedicated to dismantling LCN throughout the nation and lowering its attain and affect,” stated Assistant Legal professional Basic Kenneth A. Well mannered, Jr. of the Justice Division’s Felony Division. “On this case, the defendant used his position because the underboss of the Philadelphia organized crime household to attempt to revive its fortunes, extorting victims in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. As this prosecution demonstrates, the division stays steadfast in its dedication to eradicating organized crime from our communities.”
The investigation utilized court-ordered wiretap interceptions of cell telephones utilized by LCN members and associates to conduct unlawful sports activities betting and loansharking within the Philadelphia space. The wiretap proof established that Mazzone financed high-interest loans to clients of the sportsbook who had been unable to pay their money owed, ensuing within the assortment of loans with rates of interest as excessive as 264%. LCN members and associates made threatened debtors who didn’t pay with violence, together with one menace to make a sufferer “disappear” for nonpayment on a mortgage.
“Although the Philadelphia mob has been weakened over the many years due largely to persistent regulation enforcement, the LCN and its legal actions are nonetheless very a lot an issue and are damaging the communities by which it operates,” stated U.S. Legal professional Jacqueline C. Romero for the Jap District of Pennsylvania. “The U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace is dedicated to prosecuting anybody who’s committing severe federal crimes like these, and we won’t relaxation till the mob is nothing however a reminiscence that lives on in motion pictures.”
“The FBI is devoted to eliminating transnational organized crime teams like La Cosa Nostra who proceed to threaten our nationwide and financial safety,” stated Assistant Director Luis Quesada of the FBI’s Felony Investigative Division. “We are going to proceed to work with our regulation enforcement companions to hunt justice towards organized legal threats and alliances and shield our communities.”
This case represents Mazzone’s second federal conviction for legal exercise in reference to the LCN. He had beforehand dedicated related offenses in Philadelphia over 20 years in the past as a inducted member within the Philadelphia mafia. In 2000, Mazzone was convicted of conspiracy to commit racketeering and unlawful sports activities bookmaking. In that case, Mazzone was captured on intercepted wiretap conversations discussing an extortion. One of many victims was shot and significantly injured through the course of the extortion. Mazzone was in the end sentenced to 9 years in jail for that conviction.
The FBI, Pennsylvania State Police, and Philadelphia Police Division investigated the case.
Trial Legal professional Alexander Gottfried of the Felony Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Part and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jonathan Ortiz and Justin Ashenfelter for the Jap District of Pennsylvania prosecuted the case.