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Title: ORGANIZED CRIME - MONTREAL 


Organized crime has been officially defined by the Canadian police as "two or more persons consorting together on a continuing basis to participate in illegal activities, either directly or indirectly, for gain"; it has been defined by a former US organized crime boss as "just a bunch of people getting together to take all the money they can from all the suckers they can. Organized crime is a chain of command all the way from London to Canada, the US, Mexico, Italy, France, everywhere."


There is much more to organized crime in Canada and the US than the Italian criminal association known as the Mafia, Cosa Nostra or Honoured Society. In North America, just about every major national or ethnic group and every segment of society has been involved in organized crime. American criminologist Dr Francis Ianni has developed a theory explaining how organized criminal activity is developed and passed on in North America from one ethnic group to another, based on the length of time the group has been in North America, the language and cultural knots that bind the group, and the degree to which the group's members have been assimilated into the prevailing society.

For a long time many scholars and academics did not believe organized crime was highly structured or capable of sophisticated operations. Their scepticism derived partly from a reaction to the Hollywood portrayal of the Mafia from the 1930s to the 1950s, typified in its treatment of Al Capone ("Scarface"), and partly from the fact that documented, scholarly studies and books on organized crime did not exist.

All this changed because of the breakup of a national meeting in November of 1957 of several dozens of Mafia leaders in Appalachin, NY, and of the revelations at the US Senate "Valachi" (a Mafia soldier) hearings in 1963; because of the documentary evidence from police wiretaps and bugs in the 1970s, which allowed police to listen to Mafia leaders discussing their hierarchy and operations in both the US and Canada; and partly because of the establishment of the American Witness Protection Program, by which Mafia defectors and informers could build a new life.

Through various court cases and royal commissions and through television and newspaper exposés, the existence of a highly organized criminal network in Canada became known to the Canadian public in the late 1970s. In 1984 a joint federal-provincial committee of justice officials estimated that organized crime in Canada took in about $20 billion annually, almost $10 billion of which was from the sales of narcotics. (There is no way of estimating, however, the amount of dirty funds that are "laundered" in Canada by members of organized crime in the US and other foreign countries (see UNDERGROUND ECONOMY). The committee was formed in response to a 1980 report on organized crime by the BC attorney general's office, which claimed that organized crime figures in Canada had interests in the textile industry, cheese industry, building industry, disposal industry, vending-machine companies, meat companies, home-insulation companies, autobody shops and car dealerships, among others. The joint committee calculated that the sources of organized crime revenues could be broken down as follows: PORNOGRAPHYPROSTITUTION, bookmaking, gaming houses, illegal LOTTERIES, otherGAMBLING offences, loansharking and extortion, which together brought in hundreds of millions of dollars.

Other activities, such as WHITE-COLLAR CRIMES (eg, insurance and construction frauds and illegal bankruptcies), arson, bank robberies, motor vehicle thefts, computer crimes and counterfeit in credit cards raised the estimate to $10 billion; drugs accounted for the rest.


Mafia
Of all the organized-crime groups operating in Canada, the Mafia is perhaps the best known. This is because the Québec crime probe report of 1976 (which was based primarily on the information gathered by the "bug" planted in the milk cooler of the Montréal mobster Paulo Violi's headquarters) revealed the structure of the Montréal Mafia and its interrelationship with and dependency on the US Mafia family of Joe Bonanno as well as its close link with their Sicilian and Calabrian counterparts. Public knowledge of the Mafia is also the result of media attention; eg, the Connections series broadcast by CBC-TV in the late 1970s.

Scholars do not agree on the origin of the term "Mafia," referring to the original organization in Sicily. However, the word "mafia" was used as early as 1880 by a Sicilian scholar, Giuseppe Alongi, in his book, La Mafia, Fattori, Manifestazioni, reprinted in 1904 and again in 1977. According to the Québec Organized Crime Commission's report of 1977, it describes "a state of mind, a feeling of pride, a philosophy of life and a style of behaviour. The mark of a known and respected man, it derives from the Sicilian adjective mafiusu, used since the 18th century to describe magnificent or perfect people."

While originally a Sicilian society, the Mafia was exported and adapted to North America by a small group of Italian immigrants, mostly from Sicily and Calabria. Joe Bonanno, a self-described Mafia don, describes it thus in his memoirs: "Mafia is a process, not a thing. Mafia is a form of clan co-operation to which its individual members pledge lifelong loyalty. Friendship connections, family ties, trust, loyalty, obedience - this was the 'glue' that held us together." In Sicily, and later in the US and Canada, Mafia came to refer to an organized international body of criminals of Sicilian origin, known as Cosa Nostra, but it is now applied to the present dominant force in organized crime - the predominately Sicilian and Calabrian organized-crime groupings or "families." These families are held together by a code emphasizing respect for senior family members; by "Omerta" (ie, a vow of silence about the family's activities); by the structure or hierarchy of the family; and by an initiation rite or ceremony.

Although Italian crime families (such as the old Rocco Perri gang in Hamilton) have been active in Canada since the prohibition era, they have since operated in more clearly structured and defined areas acceptable to other crime families. Many of the Canadian Mafia families immigrated in the 1940s and 1950s and went to work with older, established Mafia figures, settling in Montréal, Toronto, Hamilton and Vancouver. Though located mainly in the major cities, family members tend to gravitate to where wealth moves; thus, in the late 1970s and early 1980s, some moved westward, following the movement of business to BC and Alberta.


Structure of the Mafia in Canada
In Toronto until recently at least 4 major Mafia-style criminal organizations were run by Canadians of Sicilian or Calabrian origin, 2 of which were named as members of the Mafia during the Valachi hearings. Since the murder of Paul Volpe (November 1983), his old organization has lost its control. There are 3 Calabrian organized crime groups operating in Hamilton. The Hamilton organized-crime family, connected with the Magaddino family of Buffalo, NY, has tried to move into the vacuum caused by the deaths, murders and imprisonments of leading members of the other organizations. A third group, also active in Hamilton, is connected with the Magaddino organized-crime family in Buffalo. The most recently established of these organizations is a family known as the Siderno group, so called because many of the members are from the town of Siderno and its environs in Calabria.

Since the mid-1980s, Montréal has had 2 dominant mafia groups: the Sicilians, led by the Vito Rizzuto organization, and Calabrians, led by the Frank Cotroni family. The Sicilians are the most influential criminal organization in Canada. The Québec crime probe exposed the membership and activities of this highly structured group in a number of its reports. Established in the 1940s by Vic Cotroni, the family evolved in the 1950s into an important branch of the powerful New York City Mafia family of Joe Bonanno. It has extensive ties with Mafia families in Italy and throughout the US, as well as with the Toronto, Hamilton and Vancouver organizations.

A serious challenge to the supremacy of the Cotroni family in Québec came from the Dubois family, an indigenous French Canadian gang comprising 9 brothers which dominated crime in the west end of Montréal until the early 1980s. However, their influence has considerably decreased since that time.

Serious internal problems between Sicilians and Calabrians in the Montréal organization led to the violent deaths of Paulo Violi (the chief lieutenant of Vic Cotroni) and his brothers in the late 1970s. The Cotroni family has primarily been involved in illegal gambling, loansharking, drug importation (utilizing the famous French Connection) extortion, and the murder and corruption of public officials. After Vic Cotroni's death, the Sicilians, led by the Rizzutos, took over.


Other Groups
Motorcycle gangs such as the Hell's Angels, the Outlaws, Satan's Choice, and the Grim Reapers have become significantly involved in organized crime. Their initiation rites have made it difficult for law enforcement officers to penetrate the groups, which have become major suppliers of illegal drugs. They have also been involved in prostitution and contract killing. It is now not unusual to find them working with other organized crime groups. Today, the Hell's Angels are the most influential and powerful outlaw motorcycle gang in Canada.

Various Chinese and Vietnamese organized-crime groups have become more prominent over the past 20 years in Vancouver and Toronto, following a wave of immigration from Hong Kong in the 1960s and 1970s. Chinese youth gangs in Toronto and Vancouver are involved in protection rackets and extortion, but the more sophisticated groups are organized by senior "Triad" members from Hong Kong to import heroin from Southeast Asia through Vancouver. The Triads are ancient Chinese organizations that have evolved into organized-crime groupings.

The organized-crime structure changes quickly in Canada, and usually exists for some years before it is detected in cities or locations; therefore, there are undoubtedly other groups that have not yet been identified. Columbian cartels are active in Toronto and Montréal. As well, Russian and eastern European organized crime groups are quite active in major Canadian cities such as Toronto, Vancouver and, to some extent, Montréal.


Activities of Organized Crime
Organized crime in Canada provides some illegal services which certain sectors of the general public want; eg, gambling, prostitution, alcohol and tobacco contraband, loansharking and the sale of soft drugs such as hashish, marijuana, speed and cocaine. In every large Canadian city, local bookmakers are involved in organized crime through an elaborate playoff system established to protect the individual bookie from large losses. Other organized-crime activities are not so readily desired by society at large. They involve the importation and distribution of hard drugs such as heroin (many drugs of the French Connection came into the US through Montréal with local Mafia involvement), the fencing of stolen goods, and murder and extortion. Other activities that aid and abet organized crime include the ongoing corruption of public officials and the "laundering" of the proceeds of criminal activities.

One of the simplest ways to "launder" money is to use activities in which there is a constant flow of cash; eg, slot machines and gambling. If the owner of a gambling casino claims to have taken in $1 million when he has actually taken in only $100 000, to which has been added $900 000 of illegally obtained money, it is almost impossible to demonstrate that the $1 million was not procured in the normal course of business.


Corruption
Without corruption, organized crime would find it very difficult to exist, and the efforts of organized crime to corrupt police, judges, politicians, lawyers, and government and civilian officials are probably more deleterious to society than any other activity in which it engages.



magna posted on 01/08/2011 12:15 PM

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The History of The Mafia & Organized Crime



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Introduction 
Pietro Aglieri was born on Saturday, June 6th 1959 and came from the Guadagna neighbourhood in Palermo. He was once a very powerful member of Cosa NostraAglieri also used to be known as "'U Signurinu" which means The Little Gentleman, due to his somewhat sophisticated education and refined manners. Pietro had classical learning and had studied Latin, philosophy, history, literature and Greek, to such a level that would have guaranteed him a place in university. However, Pietro Aglieri opted for life in Cosa Nostra. The Guardian (UK Newspaper) once listed him as the emerging man of the year, 1995 in Italy. 


Life in Cosa Nostra[hr] 
Pietro Aglieri had been a loyal supporter of the Corleonesi Clan which at the time was under the leadership of Totò Riina along with Bernado Provenzano during the second Mafia War in the 1980s. Aglieri gained favour with Riina by killing the relatives of rival Mafia bosses. After the murder of Giovanni Bontade, who was the brother of Stephano Bontade in 1988, he became boss of the Santa Maria di Gesù Mafia family. Although his name had been active with the Italian authorities since the early 1980s he did not come to the attention of the prosecutor until around 1989. 

Being a member of the Sicilian Mafia CommissionPietro Aglieri was tried in absentia for the 1992 bombings of Italy's two top anti-mafia investigators, Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino. In the August of 1991 on the 9th, Aglieri had received a life sentence for the murder of judge Antonino Scopelliti, who was killed during his preparation of the final sentence for the Maxi Trial for the Courtof Cassation. Pietro Aglieri was also on trial for the 1992 murder of Salvo Lima, a Sicilian politician who had close ties with Giulio Andreotti, the former premier who had been accused of having association with the Mafia. 

Following the arrest of Riina in the January of 1993, Pietro began to support the new less violent mafia strategy ofBernado Provenzano. The new guidelines being; patience; compartmentalisation; coexistence with state institutions, and the systematic infiltration of public finance. The idea of this by Provenzano was to try and stem the flow of pentiti by not targeting their families, but only using violence when was absolutely necessary. 

On Friday June 6th 1997, Pietro Aglieri was arrested whilst he was in a disused lemon warehouse in the dilapidated industrial area of Bagheria, along with his aides Natale Gambino and Giuseppe La Mattina. The authorities had taken almost a year to locate him after having arrested his other associate Carlo Greco. According to records Giovanni Bruscaa once loyal supporter of Riina who had been arrested in 1996 but later became a pentiti, helped the Italian police identify Aglieri who had been on the run since 1989.

Aglieri's Dissociation[hr] 
In 2002 on Thursday March 28th a letter was written by Pietro Aglieri to Pierluigi Vigna the National Anti-Mafia Prosecutor (DNA) and Pietro Grasso who was the Chief Prosecutor of Palermo to request negotiations. Aglieri's proposal was that mafiosi could possibly get lesser penalties in particular a relaxation of the 41-bis incarceration regime, in return for recognizing the existence of Cosa Nostra and the authority of the Italian state. 

Two years previous in 2000, Aglieri had been approached by Vigna in an attempt to get members of Cosa Nostra to dissociate themselves from the criminal organisation, but without necessarily becoming collaborators of justice, this similar method was used successfully in the fight against the Red Brigades; ex Red Brigade members could publicly recognize their errors without having to admit their own criminal involvement. Other mafiosi approached by Vigna were Piddu Madonia, Giuseppe Farinella and Salvatore Buscemi. However Vigna's covert attempts were considered rather contraversial and were exposed publicly by a mole in the DNA. The department was definitely frustrated on the resignation of the centre-left government of Massimo D'Alema on Tuesday April 25th 2000. Oliviero Diliberto the Minister of Justice was replaced by Piero Fassino who stopped the negotiations. 

The letter of Aglieri in the March of 2002 was followed by Leoluca Bageralla's statements in a court appearance in the July of that same year. At this hearing Bagarella gave suggestion that unnamed politicians had failed to keep agreements with the Mafia in regard to prison conditions. This appeared to have made an end to try convincing mafiosi to dissociate from the Mafia, and this was not only because of the resistance in the judicary and the Anti-Mafia movement, but also because of the emerging rift within Cosa Nostra itself. 

Aglieri remains a devote catholic[hr] 
Within Aglieri's hideout a little chapel was discovered after his arrest. This was a clear indication of his devoutness to the Catholic Church. Mario Frittitta a catholic priest confessed to having met Pietro Aglieri and celebrating Mass for him and his men in 1996 at Christmas and again on Easter in 1997 at Aglieri's hideout. Father Fittitta went on to tell the court that he had tried to persuade Aglieri to turn himself in to the authorities, but not to testify against the others.Aglieri stated that he wished to study theology after his arrest, but a leading Sicilian bishop refused permission. But not being phased Pietro started studying church history with the La Sapienza University in Rome whilst being incarcerated in the Ribibbia prison. 

In the March of 2004, in an interview with La Republica, Aglieri said that he preferred the harsh incarceration regime of 41-bis rather than being known as a collaborator of justice.


magna posted on 01/08/2011 12:22 PM

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The History of The Mafia & Organized Crime


THE AGUECI BROTHERS


Albert and Vito Agueci, also referred to as the Agueci Brothers were Sicilian mafiosi who got involved in the heroin smuggling from Canada, into the United States in the 1950s. They were born in Sicily and emmigrated to Canada after the Second World War. They operated from a bakery in Toronto and also worked with the one time boss of Buffalo,Stefano Magaddino controlling the narcotics distribution throughout western New York and the Ohio Valley; as well as Toronto itself. Early successes encouraged the brothers to expand their operations far into the USA, and with the permission of Magaddino they started to sell heroin in the Buffalo area. This came to a halt when on Thursday July 20th 1961, they were both arrested, however Magaddino refused to put up the bail, but Albert's wife later managed to raise enough cash to pay the bail. 

After his release, Albert Agueci started to plot the murder of Magaddino, but his attempt was a failure and it was his own body that was found horribly mutilated in a field outside of Rochester, New York on Friday the 3rd of November 1961. His injuries included having his teeth kicked out, a broken jaw and parts of his skin sliced off before being strangled to death. 

His brother Vito Agueci was finally convicted of narcotics violations and eventually an inmate in the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary, where he met a fellow mobster by the name of Joseph Valachi who was a hitman for the Genovese Crime Family. Now Vito Agueci who previously had informed Vito Genovese that he intended on avenging the death of his brother, so Genovese ordered Valachi to murder Vito Agueci. But Agueci was able to convince Valachi that it wasGenovese who wanted him (Valachi) killed which eventually resulted in the paranoid gangster murdering an inmate who he suspected had been sent by Vito Genovese to kill him in 1962. However the inmate who was a forger by the name of John Saupp had no connection with the Genovese Family whatsoever. As a result Valachi was given a life sentence, and believing the Genovese to be responsible for the events, he became a government informant, revealing vast activities into the workings of La Cosa Nostra so called by the federal authorities at the time. It was through the testimony ofJoseph Valachi that finally sent Magaddino to prison and where Vito Agueci was finally able to avenge his brother's death


magna posted on 01/08/2011 12:25 PM

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HOW DID THIS IMAGE CHANGE ONE OF THE STORIED TRADITIONS OF MONTREAL ?


Hint: this event that started this nasty business began in Cote St Paul - whoever said nothing happens in Cote St. Paul ? - not far from the south side of the canal, in a bar that later became - I believe - the Adult-E strip club before it was burnt down in that bar blaze plague of southwest Mtl of 2001-ish. The guy on the right is lawyer Sidney Leithman, who's getting a close up view of victim salami. Leithman, of course, was a totally high profile defense lawyer, right up there with Frank Shoofey. And like Shoofey, he was assasinated by a baddie who was never apprehended. Leithman was done in while sitting in his Saab at a red light on his way to work one morning. A bag of cocaine was found in his car. Some suspect that the hitman might've tossed it in to make him look suspicious. But that's neither here nor there (what the hell does that mean anyway ? - Chimples).

Answer: 3 Nov 1975 2 am, the owner of Le Barina at 2015 Church(it's now housing) in Cote St Paul called the cops asking for protection because Normand Dubois (of the notorious Dubois clan) was allegedly threatening him. Cops showed up and the drunken Dubois allegedly made a death threat against one of them. Cops feared a shootout in the crowded bar so they allowed Dubois and his friend Paul Morgan to leave, but they followed the car closely and pulled the vehicle over about a block away. The cops wailed away at the suspects and charged them with assault against an officer and for resisting arrest. Dubois claimed the cops for brutality. A few hours after the first incident, the same bar owner called anew as a big brawl had erupted inside.

The same beatings ensued. The Dubois brothers denounced the police brutality again. Rolland Dubois showed his butt to the cameras.

On November 8 France Landry, 20, a stripper/waitress at Antonio Bartuccio's Robert Bar Salon complained that the cops ordered her to sign a paper blaming problems on the Dubois brothers, even burning a cigarette on her breast and threatening to put her boyfriend in prison if she complained of her treatment.

Most media was unsympathetic to the complaints. In fact most ignored the pressers altogether.

However the legendary Night Patrol - the dozen-or-so cops who patrolled in the city's darkness for years and included Cinq-Mars andBob Menard - was disbanded soon after.

(Message edited by magna on 01/08/2011 12:36 PM)

magna posted on 01/08/2011 12:32 PM

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