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June 2022


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Tag: Goodfellas

Weekend Series on Crime: The Real Goodfella, Henry Hill



FBI May Have Cracked Case of Pre-Dawn Robbery Immortalized by ‘Goodfellas’

Steve Neavling

A 1978 robbery depicted in the movie “Goodfellas” was inspired by real life events at John F. Kennedy International Airport.

CNN reports a major break in that case, in which suspected organized crime associates were murdered and more than $6 million in cash and jewelry stolen.

On Wednesday, authorities arrested suspected Bonanno mob captain Vincent Asaro, 78, on charges that he participated in the robbery. Four other alleged members of Bonanno were also arrested.

“As alleged, Vincent Asaro devoted his adult life to the Bonanno crime family, with a criminal career that spanned decades,” Loretta Lynch, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, said in a statement. “Far from a code of honor, theirs was a code of violence and brute force. Those suspected of cooperating with law enforcement paid with their lives.”

Only one person – an airline employee – was previously convicted in the robbery case.



Possible Human Remains Found at Former Home of Mobster Who Inspired ‘Goodfellas’


James Burke

Steve Neavling 

FBI agents searching for evidence of a 30-year-old mob murder said they found possible human remains in a New York home once occupied by a famous gangster, the Associated Press reports.

The Queens house was once home to James Burke, a Lucchese crime family associate known as “Jimmy the Gent” and who inspired the character Jimmy Conway in the movie “Goodfellas.”

The FBI didn’t divulge details but said agents have gathered evidence that may be related to the decades-old murder.

Burke, who masterminded a nearly $6 million robbery at New York’s Kennedy Airport, died in Jail in 1996.

The home that was searched is still owned by Burke’s wife, the AP wrote.

Hoover Had His Agents in the 1950s Asking Mobsters if the Mafia Existed

By Allan Lengel

There doesn’t seem to be any doubt these days that the Mafia exists. In fact, that goes without saying.

But in the 1950s, not everyone subscribed to that assumption.

Jerry Capeci of Gang Land News, the premiere website on the Mafia, has unearthed documents which show that J. Edgar Hoover’s agents in the late 1950s were asking mobsters if the Mafia existed.

Capeci writes:

On March 24, 1958, Mafia boss Joe Profaci, a charter member of the Mafia’s Commission that was established in 1931, told two agents who stopped at the gangster’s offic e at the Carmela Mia Packing Company in Brooklyn that he knew “nothing of the Mafia organization” but “assumed it was just a term used in referring to Italians.”

Agents got more of the same on October 15, 1958 when they stopped by to chat with Anthony (Tony Bender) Strollo, the powerful Genovese family capo who would fall out of favor with his mob superiors and disappear four years later in a still-unsolved murder.

“Strollo claimed that the Mafia was a fantasy created by newspapers,” said the report. In an August 22, 1958 interview, Michael Genovese, a brother of the “top underworld leader” Vito Genovese, (right) “ridiculed the idea that the Mafia ever existed outside the nation of Italy or that the criminals in the United States of Italian extraction are members of such an organization,” the report stated.

Well, as we’ve learned , The Godfather, the Sopranos and Goodfellas were based on something more than someone’s imagination. And Sammy “The Bull” Gravano was more than just a hoodlum wannabe.

DEA Busts Distributor and 9 Employees in Crack Down on “Bath Salt”

DEA Agent in front of NY Store Suspected of Selling Bath Salts/ dea photo

By Allan Lengel

The DEA has busted a major distributor of the recreational designer drug “bath salt” along with nine employees of retail shops in the first- ever federal prosecution of  the emerging drug known to produce a high comparable high to Ectasy.

The DEA in New York on Tuesday announced the arrest of  distributor Miguel Ashby and sellers  in Manhattan and Brooklyn:  Maxim Amar, Diana Asaro, Nassar Atrach, Yakob Biton, Dimitry Farber, Sufiyan Ganchi, Gabrielle Grife, Igor Kanchik, and Steve Zhik.

The DEA said that bath salts are synthetic stimulants that have no real value as a bath salt or other bath product.

“Bath salts” first emerged in the U.S. about two years ago and is typically snorted in powder form or ingested in pill form, but it can also be smoked or injected intravenously, the DEA said.

Users typically experience highs similar to that of the drug Ecstasy and stimulants like cocaine and methamphetamines, the DEA said.

Adverse effects include psychotic episodes, delusions, panic attacks, and increased heart rate, the DEA said.

Companies in China and India are principally responsible for manufacturing and exporting the drug, the DEA said.

“Nationwide the abuse of ‘bath salts’ has led to serious health consequences and death,” said John Gilbride , head of the DEA in New York. ” This investigation is further evidence that DEA and our law enforcement partners will not sit by while a new form of drug abuse takes hold. Let this be a message to not only those who sell this poison, but to those who abuse ‘bath salts’ that this road leads to a dead end.”

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara added in a statement:  “Bath salts are one of the latest designer drugs to reach our shores, and they have proven to be a public health and safety menace with serious, and sometimes deadly, consequences.”

Authorities said that “bath salts” are also often sold in dance clubs and at parties known as “raves”. They typically sell for approximately $40 to $100 per gram, and each packet contains approximately one quarter to one gram. A gram consists of approximately eight to 40 doses, the DEA said

Brand names include  “Aura,” “Ivory Wave,” “Russian River,” “Xtreme,”  and “Goodfellas.”

They are often labeled “not for human consumption” to circumvent federal narcotics laws, the DEA said.

“Goodfellas” Mobster Gets Probation for Public Intoxication

By Allan Lengel

Henry Hill, the New York mobster who inspired the Martin Scorcese film “Goodfellas”, has been sentenced to two years probation after pleading guilty to two misdemeanor counts of public intoxication, the Associated Press reported.

Hill, 65, a mobster turned informant, got credit for four days served and was fined $220 in the San Bernardino, Calif., earlier this week, the AP reported.

An arrest warrant was issued earlier this month after Hill failed to appear in court.

Hill was played by actor Ray Liotta in the 1990 film, which also featured standout performances by Robert Di Niro and Joe Pesci. Some lines in the movie became legendary (like in the video below).


“Goodfellas” Mobster is No-Show in Calif Court on Public Drunkenness Charges


The Press-Enterprise
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. –“Henry Hill.”

San Bernardino County Superior Court Judge Kyle Brodie matter-of-factly read the name Wednesday in a roll call of small-time suspects: the unlicensed driver; the work-release probationer.

“No answer,” yelled the bailiff.

With that, the mobster-turned-FBI informant — whose life inspired the movie epic “Goodfellas” — was facing two $25,000 arrest warrants.

Once linked to an NCAA point-shaving scandal and a $5 million airport heist, Hill at age 65 is wanted for failing to appear on tickets alleging that he was drunk in public in San Bernardino.

“I would have been asking for his autograph,” said Desiree Gallegos, 27, who was in the courtroom for a suspension of house arrest terms.

Reached by phone later in the day, Hill said he was unaware he needed to be present. He said he had visited the downtown court on Monday to advise the clerks that he would be having hernia surgery later this week and wanted a new date.
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