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The Old Man Next Door

"Saddam had his spider hole. Manson had Barker Ranch. For James “Whitey” Bulger, the anonymity of advanced age provided ample cover for him to hide out 16 years in Santa Monica, a stash of blood money stuffed in the walls and guns at the ready." The last days of America’s most wanted mobster.
posted by porn in the woods on Oct 28, 2013 - 26 comments

The thrillsville of it all...

Gay Talese's "Frank Sinatra Has A Cold" appeared in Esquire Magazine in April 1966. Sinatra had turned down interview requests from Esquire for years and refused to be interviewed for the profile. Rather than give up, Talese spent the three months following and observing the man and interviewing any members of his entourage who were willing to speak -- and the final story was published without Sinatra's cooperation or blessing. In 2003, editors pronounced it the best article the magazine had ever published. Nieman Storyboard interviewed Talese last month about the piece and has annotated it with his comments. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 8, 2013 - 46 comments

Orson, you're behaving like an asshole.

In the early eighties, Orson Welles was a fixture at L.A.’s Ma Maison, where Wolfgang Puck was the chef before he moved on to Spago. Nearing 70, and 40-plus years removed from Citizen Kane, which he made when he was just 25, Welles was fat and famously difficult, no longer a viable star but still a sort of Hollywood royalty—a very certain sort. The younger director Henry Jaglom was one of many aspiring auteurs who admired him but possibly the only one who taped their conversations. These took place in 1983 over lunch at the restaurant.
posted by The Whelk on Jun 25, 2013 - 67 comments

The Green Mafia

“Uncle Vincenzo,” implored the businessman, Angelo Salvatore, using a term of affection for the alleged head of Sicily’s Gimbellina crime family, 79-year-old Vincenzo Funari. According to a transcript of their wiretapped conversation, Salvatore continued: “For the love of our sons, renewable energy is important. . . . It’s a business we can live on.” [more inside]
posted by 445supermag on Mar 1, 2013 - 15 comments

You Stutterin Prick!

A kind of shitily edited, but other wise lovely documentary about The Real Henry Hill.
posted by timsteil on Sep 5, 2012 - 9 comments

You're gonna like this guy. He's all right. He's a good fella. He's one of us.

Informant, former wiseguy and goodfella Henry Hill (website, Wikipedia) has been made dead by illness. He was not a schnook.
posted by Artw on Jun 12, 2012 - 33 comments

"More fundamentally, the Camorra is simply a part of life."

The Camorra Never Sleeps: "The Camorra is not an organization like the Mafia that can be separated from society, disciplined in court, or even quite defined. It is an amorphous grouping in Naples and its hinterlands of more than 100 autonomous clans and perhaps 10,000 immediate associates, along with a much larger population of dependents, clients, and friends. It is an understanding, a way of justice, a means of creating wealth and spreading it around. It has been a part of life in Naples for centuries—far longer than the fragile construct called Italy has even existed. At its strongest it has grown in recent years into a complete parallel world and, in many people’s minds, an alternative to the Italian government, whatever that term may mean." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Apr 10, 2012 - 29 comments

James "Whitey" Bulger found.

James "Whitey" Bulger has been arrested in California. [more inside]
posted by rmd1023 on Jun 23, 2011 - 93 comments

Vanguard of American Journalism

Current TV previously & previously, the media company founded by Al Gore after the 2000 election, has picked up the kinds of in depth long form journalism being rapidly dropped by major networks, but has been tantalizingly unavailable for those without cable; until now. They have been putting their Vanguard episodes up on their website and on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Apr 30, 2011 - 24 comments

Fish finger

Security advisor Brian Krebs on the 'hacking' of web dating site Plenty of fish by Chris Russos.
posted by unliteral on Jan 31, 2011 - 73 comments

Meanwhile, Joey Cupcakes Is Still A Free Man

Fuhgedddaboutit! This morning, FBI agents conducted a multi-city raid across the Northeast, busting over 120 suspected mobsters in one of the largest raids in FBI history. The Village Voice blog helpfully provides this list of the 20 best nicknames of the suspects, including such immortals as Junior Lollipops, Tony Bagels, Jimmy Gooch, and Vinnie Carwash. They should have known something was up when the feds came looking for Joey Cupcakes.
posted by briank on Jan 20, 2011 - 66 comments

100 quirky things we didn't know last year

100 quirky things we didn't know last year, such as that pea plants can grow inside a human lung, mafia members unwisely use Facebook and swans occasionally get divorced.
posted by philipy on Jan 3, 2011 - 38 comments

The Gentle Art of Japanese Murder

I asked Igari to help me deal with the fallout from the book. After much discussion, he and his two colleagues came up with a plan. His parting words were: “It’ll be a long battle. It’ll take money and courage, and you’ll have to come up with those on your own. But we’ll fight.” On August 28th, his body was found in his vacation home in Manila, wrists slashed. Time of death unknown. It’s been ruled a suicide. Personally, I believe he was killed. I probably will never be able to prove it. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu on Nov 25, 2010 - 23 comments

Epic Mafia: FOSing without claiming would be a scumtell if it weren't for WIFOM

Every person is assigned a role at the start of the game. You are randomly sided with either the village, the mafia, or a third party. During the night, the mafia secretly meet and discuss to decide who they want to kill, while other power roles decide what to do. During the day, the village players must figure out who is not sided with the village and get rid of them. [more inside]
posted by GooseOnTheLoose on Jul 17, 2010 - 38 comments

Moral: Don't Do Your Heroin Supplier Any Favors

The Rise and Fall of Frank Ma, Last of New York's Asian Godfathers: How a Chinese immigrant became a crime lord, ordered a hit that left the wrong men dead, sparked a 16-year international investigation and finally landed in prison for the rest of his life.
posted by zarq on Apr 18, 2010 - 43 comments

James Traficant runs for Congress again, just months out of prison

About 8 years ago, U.S. Representative James Traficant (D-Ohio) was sentenced to 8 years in jail for kickbacks, fraud, bribery, and racketeering. He was tightly connected with the Youngstown Ohio Mafia. At the time, he was only the second Congressman since the Civil War to be expelled by his peers from the institution in a vote of 420:1. The fascinating story of the Youngstown Mafia - and Traficant's rise and fall - is told by David Grann (of Lost City of Z and The New Yorker) in a 2000 article called "Crimetown, U.S.A.". Traficant was released from prison on September 2, 2009 to a hometown hero welcome. On February 23, 2010, Traficant announced he will running for Congress as an Independent.
posted by stbalbach on Feb 23, 2010 - 44 comments

Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?

No one is drunk or under any narcotic influence, and yet all three men are moments away from what Fitzpatrick will later describe as "a mindfuck". A year on, Gibson concurs. "It left me with the sense that one of my basic anchors on reality had been ripped loose," he recalls. Wales still talks about the all-nighter with reverent awe:"It was amazing. It was a work of art. It was a thing of beauty."
It was, more specifically, a parlour game.
posted by empath on Feb 14, 2010 - 85 comments

Race Riots in Calabria

Italians cheer as police move African immigrants out of a small town in Calabria, following clashes in which immigrant farmworkers were shot at, severely beaten and run over. Rosarno is said to be a hotbed of the 'Ndrangheta, which controls the labour market of illegalized seasonal day labourers living in inhuman and desperate conditions. While the Pope urges Italy to respect migrants, leftist newspaper 'il manifesto' put this on the front page.
posted by ts;dr on Jan 10, 2010 - 51 comments

"face-tattooed, duel-scarred, razor-brandishing inmates"

Codes of the Underworld: How Criminals Communicate
Reason.com review focusing on "Tattoos, dueling scars, and other rational acquisitions"
Insider Higher Ed on "Criminal Incompetence"
Marginal Revolution on rates of violence between men and women in prison
Interviews with the author: Written ... Audio
posted by andoatnp on Dec 18, 2009 - 23 comments

You know how to whistle, don't you? Just put your lips together and blow....

The book the NBA doesn't want you to read. Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy was convicted of passing inside information on NBA games to gamblers, for thousands of dollars. He has written a book purporting to reveal many explosive scandals about NBA officiating (detailed excerpts). It was scheduled for publication by Random House (cached Amazon page), then cancelled after an alleged lawsuit threat by the league. [more inside]
posted by msalt on Oct 29, 2009 - 47 comments

Our Thing

The Five Families were established by Charlie "Lucky" Luciano in the wake of the Castellammarese War (1929 - September 10, 1931), a gang war in New York between partisans of Joe "The Boss" Masseria and those of Salvatore Maranzano. The arrangement, under the administration of The Commission, was created to divide the city among the gangs with mutual interests, and prevent the continuous grab for more territory. Of course, the arrangement has been anything but peaceful, and the Five Families have all gone through periods of prosperity and decline. So who are they, and how are they doing now? [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing on May 14, 2009 - 68 comments

Smell the spaghetti

The drama behind the making of The Godfather is nearly as intriguing as the movie itself. A recent Vanityfair piece recounts "how the clash of Hollywood sharks, Mafia kingpins, and cinematic geniuses shaped a Hollywood masterpiece." A follow-up article tells of a fateful dinner between the film's stars and members of the famous Genovese crime family. [more inside]
posted by Afroblanco on Mar 3, 2009 - 32 comments

McMafia: The World's Shadow Economy

In EU and NATO member Bulgaria, the state is a part of the Mafia. The world's "shadow economy" accounts for 10 trillion dollars each year. Chechen mobsters bent on revenge kill a young woman in London in a case of mistaken identity. Welcome to the global pillage following the fall of Communism and the 'liberalization' of trade. Misha Glenny travels through the underworld.
posted by lukemeister on May 22, 2008 - 28 comments

Manure-y bouquet, with pronounced hydrochloric acidity

Italy produced and sold at least 70 million litres of cheap wine containing acid, manure and fertiliser, Italian weekly L'Espresso said on Friday largely blaming organised crime in the south. [more inside]
posted by preparat on Apr 9, 2008 - 54 comments

No "Pizzo" for my "Pizza"

"In a rebellion shaking the Sicilian Mafia to its centuries-old roots, businesses are joining forces in refusing to submit to demands for protection money called 'pizzo.' And they're getting away with it, threatening to sap an already weakened crime syndicate of one of its steadiest sources of revenue." The rebellion is fueled by a Web site "where businessmen are finding safety in numbers to say no to the mob." Called Addiopizzo (Goodbye Pizzo) "it brings together businesses in the Sicilian capital that are resisting extortion." The campaign was launched in 2004 by a group of youths thinking of opening a pub. "They started off by plastering Palermo with anti-pizzo fliers, reading 'AN ENTIRE PEOPLE WHO PAYS THE PIZZO IS A PEOPLE WITHOUT DIGNITY,' and eventually brought their campaign online where it struck a profound chord with Sicilians fed up with Mafia bullying."*
posted by ericb on Jan 13, 2008 - 57 comments

Pronounced en-drang-ay-ta

"The ‘Ndrangheta cannot be beheaded.” Organized crime is Italy's biggest industry. Most people are more familiar with the Sicilian Mafia or maybe even the Neopolitan Camorra, but it's the Calabrian 'Ndranghta (very in-depth article) that has police around the world worried now, especially after they were blamed for a six-person murder in Germany this summer. [more inside]
posted by Bookhouse on Nov 17, 2007 - 24 comments

Like The Godfather, But With More Whipped Cream

Every number from Alan Parker's "kids as mobsters" 1970's musical, Bugsy Malone.
posted by jonson on Jul 26, 2007 - 38 comments

Armchair Mafioso

In the peaceful Sicilian village of Salem, a dark presence is about to make itself known. For years, the family based crime organization known as the Mafia has been establishing itself in the foundation of the community. Until now, the naive citizens have been unaware of the evil among them. Tonight, however, the Mafia makes its move. Tonight, someone will die, and until the Mafia has eliminated all opposition, the innocent will continue to die. Unless, of course, the Mafia is destroyed(PDF) first...
posted by robocop is bleeding on Mar 6, 2007 - 31 comments

the new islamic mafia

The New Islamic Mafia - An introduction to Albanian organized crime
posted by thirteenkiller on Jul 22, 2006 - 31 comments

Starforce calls agent Ness!

Not only is Starforce an evil driver-based copy-protection system that will spontaneously reboot your machine without warning if it thinks its being circumvented, not only is it on surprisingly many PC software products including a few you just might own, not only does it not remove itself when the game that installed it is uninstalled, but now they're claiming that the complaints about their software ultimately come from the Russian Mafia, and are asking authorities in the U.S. and Russia about looking into them.... (Previous Starforce idiocy on MeFi.)
posted by JHarris on Mar 21, 2006 - 62 comments

Call me Ol' Angelo Fatnose.

Call me Ol' Angelo Fatnose. In anticipation of the return of The Sopranos on Sunday night, I'm wondering: what's your Mafia name?
posted by mickeyz on Mar 10, 2006 - 34 comments

Last of the mustache petes

Steal little steal big. After nine months on the lam, reputed mob boss Joey "The Clown" Lombardo was captured Friday night in Elmwood Park. He was one of the “guys back home” who took part in skimming $2 million from the Stardust hotel in the movie Casino. He gets the spider hole treatment. (”Moving from place to place is very stressful, as Saddam Hussein will tell you.") While folks who took part in stealing over $42 billion from California alone are photographed in suits and described as “polite.”
posted by Smedleyman on Jan 16, 2006 - 22 comments

Power mad conman and the Polish Mafia

The delusional world of Robert Hendy-Freegard, assasin/spy/carsalesman The tale of a power-mad car salesman. The guy managed to get so many people to do so many crazy things that I suggest you read the link for yourself. Unbelievable.
posted by ClanvidHorse on Jun 24, 2005 - 25 comments

Operators are standing by?

Hitman.us is certainly a parody, offering, for a reasonable $20,000 fee, to remove the unwanted from your life. One of the rotating ads on the site, however, points to bustoutdealer.com (registered under the same name), which, with a fee under $4,000, looks like it may be serious.
posted by nobody on Jan 19, 2005 - 17 comments

Grandpa Gotti Gets Grouchy

Blowing Up Gotti. A weekly series from The Smoking Gun featuring prison videotapes of John Gotti behind plexiglass talking to his kids and grandkids. Check out Episode One: Grandpa Blows a Gasket (Quicktime required). Makes you think twice about your baseball career. (Via Gawker).
posted by adrober on Aug 18, 2004 - 19 comments

GangRule - organized crime in NYC and in Boston

GangRule - the history of organized crime in New York City. A growing database of photos, biographies, newspaper clippings and family trees from 1890 on. And for the godfather trackers among us, there's also Boston Mafia, which includes the history of a notorious contemporary fugitive, lately in the news via testimony from his brother, Billy Bulger.
posted by madamjujujive on Jun 24, 2003 - 8 comments

Finally, a Reason to Watch Court TV?

Finally, a Reason to Watch Court TV? An Olympics skating vote rigging Russian mafia fraud trial--what fun! Hope this happens, and I hope in happens in New York's Federal Southern District, because, well, what fun to bring down a stupid sport (And remove it from television); discredit the French, Russians... I want seats to this one! Or Perhaps E! will provide the coverage?
posted by ParisParamus on Aug 2, 2002 - 14 comments

Mike Ovitz uncovers a sinister organization!

Mike Ovitz uncovers a sinister organization! He claims to be the latest victim of the "gay Mafia." By most accounts, he would also be the first. Is this simple bellyaching from a man who once dominated Hollywood? Or maybe, just maybe, we’re witnessing the birth of a new crime syndicate, and with it, fresh takes on the shopworn mob movies? LA Times link (sigh, registration req.)
posted by herc on Jul 2, 2002 - 17 comments

John Gotti, the former head of New York's Gambino crime family, died in a prison hospital today at age 61.

John Gotti, the former head of New York's Gambino crime family, died in a prison hospital today at age 61. He was serving a life sentence after 1992 convictions for racketeering and six killings. "Sammy Bull" Gravano must be breathing easier today.
posted by tranquileye on Jun 10, 2002 - 13 comments

UnificationChurch Under Siege in Brazil

UnificationChurch Under Siege in Brazil Rev. Moon's massive land purchases lead to major search-and-seizure operation. Money laundering and other no-no activities. This cult, the Avis to Scientology's Hertz, has paid President Bush I handsome money to speak in their behalf when they began operations in Brazil. They also own the Washington Times, Insight Magazine and many many other businesses, including a university, jewelry stores nationwide, and a ballet company. Their found, Rev. Moon, a convicted felon (taxes). Rumored to get money from Japanese mob to do their conservative activities, and now want to open car plant in China. Gone the days of merely selling roses.
posted by Postroad on May 14, 2002 - 2 comments

The Maltesos.

The Maltesos. Well, there's no Webistics, and Big Pussy hasn't turned up floating down the Fox River, but here's your modern American mob family, suburban style. Betty Loren-Maltese, longtime mayor of the Town of Cicero, which abuts Chicago's West Side, has been indicted for looting the town's health insurance system to the tune of at least $10 million. The US Attorney says it is the largest dollar amount in any single organized crime investigation. [more inside]
posted by dhartung on Jun 16, 2001 - 8 comments

Don't make phone calls in Vegas. The Mob is listening.

Don't make phone calls in Vegas. The Mob is listening. Whores! Wiretapping! Kevin Mitnick! Men nicknamed 'Aspirins' with electric drills! And more, courtesy of The Register. How widespread is this kind of telco infiltration? Should we trust any phone calls, anywhere?
posted by darukaru on May 15, 2001 - 7 comments

John Salvati:

John Salvati: not funny. Man imprissoned for 30 YEARS, known to be innocent by FBI, FBI kept him there b/c if the real perp was caught, dozens of informants would have been revealed. 30 years, gone, makes me sick feeling. There will be more news on this soon, I hope.
posted by tomplus2 on May 3, 2001 - 9 comments

You've seen the movie, maybe even read the book. But have you experienced the website? When the flash intro comes up, click on "You're a dead rat" for a good chuckle.
posted by inviolable on Apr 22, 2001 - 7 comments

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