Friday, July 28, 2017


By Scott Williams-Collier.

1) Murder Inc. The enforcement arm of the Italian American Mafia (Cosa Nostra) which was the first and last of its kind. Thought to be responsible for over 900 murders throughout the 1930s and 1940s, this group of highly efficient killers would wipe out anyone who was a problem for the mob. The group comprised mainly of Jewish and Italian mobsters from Brownsville, East New York and Ocean Hill. They would kill in many different and brutal ways; multiple gun shot wounds, ice picks, strangulation, meat cleavers, ropes and torture and the list goes on. These guys had absolutely no compunction and would kill anyone at the drop of a hat. The most prolific hit squad in mob history. Notable members, Louis Lepke Buchalter, Albert Anastasia, Abe Reles and Harry Strauss.

2)  Roy DeMeo and the DeMeo crew. Roy DeMeo was a solider in the Gambino crime family and the leader of the DeMeo crew, which he ran from his bar the Gemini Lounge. Roy was a feared member in the family and a high earner. He made money in auto theft, porn, loan sharking, extortion, fraud, drugs and most notably murder for hire. Its estimated that the crew killed up to 200 people between 1973 and 1983, most of which have never been found. The crew would usually lure victims to the back of the Gemini Lounge, upon entering the building the target would immediately be shot in the head then stabbed in the heart. A towel would be wrapped around the head and the body would be thrown in the bathtub while the blood was drained. The Body would then be dismembered and disposed of never to be seen again. If any target was unfortunate to have a companion with them at the time; they would also suffer the same fate, nobody would be spared! Things started to unravel for Roy in the early 80's, his crew activities were drawing a lot of attention from the authorities and there was also a pending car theft ring case against him. Roy DeMeo was eventually killed in 1983 by fellow DeMeo crew members Anthony Senter and Joseph Testa along with Gambino Capo Nino Gaggi. His body was found 20th of January 1983 in the trunk of his own car with multiple gunshot wounds. His career will go down as one of the bloodiest in mob history.

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3) Thomas "Tommy Karate" Pitera. A hitman and made guy in the Bonanno crime family. Pitera is suspected by law enforcement agencies of being involved in up to 60 murders.  Pitera was sadistic and took enjoyment out of killing people. He even kept souvenirs from his victims, something more akin to the actions of a serial killer than a mob hitman. In fact there are many that believe if Tommy hadn't  been involved in organised crime, he would have probably been a serial killer instead. Piteria would dismember some of his victims after killing them and decapitated them and buried the heads elsewhere to hinder identification. Dismemberment was something that he really enjoyed; he even had books on the subject. In 1992 one of Pitera's crew members, Frank Gangi started to have a crisis of conscience. Reliving some of the terrible things he had seen Tommy do, he decided to rat on Tommy. Pitera is now serving a life sentence for multiple murder and supervising a drug ring.

 4) Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso. Former underboss of the Lucchese crime family Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso was a tough, ruthless guy. Thought to be responsible for up to 40 to 50 murders from his own hand and ordering the killings of many more. Law enforcement described him as a homicidal maniac and a killing machine with no soul. in 1986 Casso went to war with Gambino Boss John Gotti. Casso wanted to avenge the killing of Paul Castellano who was assassinated in December 1985 in a coup to take over the leadership of the Gambino crime family by Gotti and his supporters. later the following year Casso plotted to kill Gotti by having a bomb planted on his car. A Genovese associate by the name of Herbert Pate was selected to plant a bomb under Gambino underboss Frankie DeCicco's car, where DeCicco and John Gotti were thought to be having a meeting. Pate waited for the mobsters to return to their car. Once DeCicco had returned to his car, Pate mistook Lucchese solider Frank Bellino who was stood next to the vehicle for John Gotti and detonated the bomb. The Blast injured Bellino and killed Gambino underboss DeCicco. Luckily for Gotti he decided not to attend the meeting that day, something that probably saved his life. The Gambinos retaliated by having Casso shot while sat in his car later that year. A group of men pulled up beside his car and shot Casso multiple times. Unfortunately for them he survived the attack. Casso outraged by the attempt on his life went on a rampage looking for the people involved in the hit and killed them, including an innocent man. Later on in his mob career, Casso became the underboss of the family then eventually the acting boss. By this time in his life he'd made a lot of enemies and became very paranoid. Casso ordered the killings of anyone he thought was a threat and effectively started cleaning house in the ranks of the Lucchese crime family and their associates. In the early 1990s corrupt polices officers on Casso's payroll (Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa) informed Casso he was about to be indicted in the windows racket. He fled and went on the lamb but was eventually caught a year later and sent to prison. Casso turned government witness to try and get a more lenient sentence but after offering up information, the authorities decided to pull out of the agreed deal due to the amount of heinous crimes he had been involved with. Anthony Gaspipe Casso is now serving a 455 year sentence in prison.

5) Sammy "Sammy the Bull" Gravano. Sammy the bull was the mobs perfect killer, no questions, no mistakes and no remorse. He originally started his life in the mob in the Colombo crime family under the tutelage of  capo Thomas "shorty" Spero.  It was under Spero that Sammy committed his first murder,  he was ordered by Spero to kill fellow associate and friend Joseph Colucci. Shorty's nephew was having an affair with Colucci's wife and wanted to marry her so Colucci needed to go. Sammy made his bones in the mob without any remorse or complaints, a hit that helped raise his stock in the Colombo family. Later on Gravano got into a dispute with Shorty's brother, there was some jealousy that Sammy would become a made man before his own son. To resolve the issue Tommy Shorty Spero had Gravano transferred to the Gambino crime family. He eventually became a made guy by his godfather Paul Castellano in 1976. Nearly 10 years later Gravano would be recruited by John Gotti and they would conspire together to kill Castellano and his underboss Tommy Bilotti in a power coup to take over the Gambino Family. The hit went down December 16th 1985. It would be one of the most spectacular hits in mob history and marked the rise of John Gotti and Sammy the Bull in Cosa Nostra. Sammy would eventually become the underboss of the family and made a lot of money in the construction business. During the 1980s and 1990s law enforcement agencies stepped up their pursuit of the mob. By the early 1990's the noose had started to tighten around the hierarchy in the Gambino family. In December 1990 Gravano and John Gotti were arrested at the Ravenite Social Club on racketeering charges that included Murder, conspiracy to murder, loansharking, illegal gambling, obstruction of justice, bribery and tax evasion.  Based on tapes from FBI bugs the mobsters were denied bail. Its these tapes that caused a rift between Gotti and Gravano. Gravano requested to listen to the tapes in which he heard his boss bad mouth him and blame him for murders. Gravano decided to turn government witness. He Testified against Gotti and other high-ranking mobsters in exchange for a reduced sentence. Gravano's testimony helped send John Gotti down for life. In his statement he admitted to 19 murders and all the other criminal activity he had been involved with. For his cooperation Gravano was given a 5 year sentence but had already served 4 years so the sentence amounted to less than a year in prison. In February 2000 showed that old habits die hard. Gravano was in hot water again, this time for running a major drug ring selling ecstasy. The Bull was sent back to prison for 20 years. He is due to be released in 2017. Out of all the murders Gravano was involved in the most callous was the murder of his own brother in-law Nicholas Scibetta. Scibetta's drugs and alcoholism along with his homosexuality had become an embarrassment to the underworld. There was concerns that Scibetta could become an informant. Sammy ask for permission from Paul Castellano to kill his brother in-law, permission was given. Gravano's crew killed Nick and as a sign of disrespect dismembered his body. The only trace left of Nicholas Scibetta was a hand, after this murder Sammy went on as normal sleeping next to his wife knowing that he had murdered her brother; cold blooded as hell! Sammy the Bull Gravano will go down as one the most treacherous cold blooded killers in mob history.

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