Two old-time labor racketeers are among 19 charged with racketeering, murder, narcotics, and firearms offenses.
On Wednesday, the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced charges filed against 19 members and associates of the Luchese Family of La Cosa Nostra with racketeering, murder, narcotics, and firearms offenses.
The Superseding Indictment builds on charges previously filed against Luchese soldier CHRISTOPHER LONDONIO and Luchese associate TERRENCE CALDWELL, who were charged in February 2017 with racketeering offenses, including the murder of Michael Meldish, a Luchese associate who was killed in the Bronx on November 15, 2013.
The Superseding Indictment charges MATTHEW MADONNA, the alleged street boss of the Luchese Family, STEVEN CREA SR., the alleged underboss of the Family, and STEVEN CREA JR., LONDONIO’s alleged captain in the Family, with ordering the murder of Meldish. The Superseding Indictment also contains additional racketeering charges against MADONNA, CREA SR., and CREA JR., as well as the alleged consigliere of the Luchese Family, JOSEPH DiNAPOLI, and numerous other members and associates of La Cosa Nostra.
At least two of the individuals who were taken into custody on Wednesday (or were already behind bars) were known labor racketeers.
For example, Steven Crea and Jospeph DiNapoli have had long ties to corrupt unions.
In the late 1990s, the Lucchese and Gambino families (two of the five Mafia factions in the New York metropolitan area), were “engaged in construction industry extortion and bid-rigging conspiracies for more than 50 years,” according to the New York Times.
“Investigators identified the acting boss of the Lucchese family, Steven L. Crea, 52, as a major figure in the racketeering operations,” the Times noted in 1999.
They substantially inflated profits by paying employees less than union scale and by evading hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments to union pension and fringe benefits funds, law enforcement officials said.
In 1999, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters’ government-appointed Independent Review Board permanently barred New York-based Teamsters Local 522 officer John Ferrara for associating with both Steven Crea and Joseph DiNapoli, both of whom are listed in the current indictment.