The supposed head of one of the historical families of the Italian mafia from New York and several alleged members were arrested Tuesday and charged in a massive racketeering case brought by prosecutors.
The indictment, filed in federal court for the Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn, charges 10 members of the Colombo family with multiple crimes, including extortion and money laundering.
Andrew “Mush” Russo, the 87-year-old head of the Colombo family, their number two, Benjamin Castellazzo, 83, and counselor Ralph DiMatteo are among a total of 14 defendants, prosecutors said.
Russo and Castellazzo were arrested Tuesday and are expected to undergo virtual prosecution before the Brooklyn court later in the day. DiMatteo remains at large, prosecutors said.
They are accused of seeking to infiltrate and take control of a union, even reaching into the medical benefits fund.
The Colombo family is one of the top five Italian-American mafia organizations in the northeast of the country.
The other families are the Genovese, Lucchese, Gambino, and Bonanno.
The entire Colombo crime family administration, including Russo and Castellazzo, have already pleaded guilty to a variety of mobster activities in 2012.
Russo, convicted of crimes seven times, was last released in 2013.
The New York mob has been weakened by several coups in recent years, including arrests, fratricidal fights, and competition from other criminal organizations, but they are still considered active.
The head of the Gambino clan, “Frank” Cali, was shot and killed in front of his home in the New York district of Staten Island in March 2019.
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