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Sunday, May 26, 2024 | Back issues
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Feds Say They’ve Rolled Up Gambino Family

MANHATTAN (CN) - Fourteen alleged members of the Gambino crime family were charged Tuesday with racketeering, murder and running an interstate prostitution ring that pimped out a 15-year-old girl. "Modern mobsters may be less colorful, less flamboyant, and less glamorous than some of their predecessors, but they are still terrorizing businesses, using baseball bats, and putting people in the hospital," U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a statement.

Authorities arrested 12 alleged "made" members and associates of the Gambino family, including the boss.

One of the Gambino "soldiers," Onofrio Modica, was arrested Friday, and the 14th defendant, Steve Maiurro, is still at large, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors say Daniel Marino is the boss of the family of about 200 fully inducted members and hundreds of associates.

The 61-page complaint claims that Marino ordered the 1989 murder of Thomas Spinelli and the 1998 murder of Frank Hydell.

Spinelli, who testified against the family to a federal grand jury, was shot in the head in Brooklyn; his body was never recovered, according to the complaint.

Marino is accused of authorizing the murder of Hydell, who had been cooperating with authorities and was shot three times in the face and head at a Staten Island strip club.

Prosecutors say Marino also tampered with witnesses, ran a high-stakes gambling ring and extorted millions from construction unions, contractors and suppliers through violence and threats.

Authorities also charged two alleged Mafia captains, Thomas Orefice and Onofrio Modica.

Modica allegedly killed James DiGuglielmo and an innocent bystander, Richard Sbarra, during a drive-by shooting in a dispute over drugs.

Prosecutors say Modica also tried to tamper with the jury that was assigned to the 1992 trial of then-boss John J. Gotti on federal racketeering and murder charges.

Orefice and his crew allegedly ran a prostitution business that recruited women as young as 15 and advertised on Craigslist. He also is accused of wire fraud: paying kickbacks of 5 percent to restaurant chefs who ordered meat from the Mafia at inflated prices.

In addition to sex trafficking, Orefice's crew also dealt cocaine, Oxycontin and marijuana and ran a loan-sharking business, prosecutors say.

The 14 defendants are Marino, Modica, Orefice, Maiurro, Dominick DiFiore, Anthony Manzella, Michael Scotto, Michael Scarpaci, Thomas Scarpaci, David Eisler, Salvatore Borgia, Keith Dellitalia, Suzanne Porcelli and Anthony Vecchione.

They face 23 counts - nearly all of which carry prison sentences of 20 years to life - and may have to turn over more than $20 million in ill-gotten gains.

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