Dominick Cataldo, (March 19, 1923 - April 27, 1997), known as "Little Dom", was a Sicilian-American soldier in the New York Colombo crime family.
Dominick Cataldo was born on March 19th 1923 in Lower East Side, Manhattan in a small apartment on Essex Street, his father Samuel Cataldo was a Sicilian immigrant from San Cataldo and member of the Profaci crime family. Dominick and his brother Joseph Cataldo both joined the Colombo family.
In 1972, Cataldo started an illegal bookmaking operation and casino out of an after-nights club located on 87th Street just across Atlantic Avenue, which was one block over and one block down from Salvatore Polisi's apartment on 95th Avenue and 88th Street.
The Gerard Pappa murder Edit
On June 16, 1980, Genovese crime family Soldier Gerard Pappa was shot to death in a Brooklyn luncheonette by a Colombo hit squad. It was for revenge of carrying out the murder of suspected Colombo police informant Ralph Spero, the brother of Colombo crime family capo Thomas Spero. He was murdered by Dominick and his nephews Nicholas and Joseph. Knowing how hard Gerard would be to kill, that he was always armed, very fast and very game, they were hiding in the luncheonette's rear kitchen when he arrived. They approached him from behind and shot him in the head with a sawed-off shotgun, literally blowing his head to pieces. He was killed instantly. Gambino crime family mobster Salvatore Gravano later spoke of feeling great sadness and remorse for the loss of his childhood friend. Genovese crime family boss Vincent Gigante was suspected of handing down the murder contract, but was acquitted of his alleged involvement in the murder in 1997.
Indictment and incarceration Edit
The "books" for membership into La Cosa Nostra had been officially closed since the late 1950s. Following the death of Carlo Gambino in 1976, the last remaining mob boss to have decried such a rule, the books for proposed members were reopened. Cataldo received his membership into the Colombo family in the late 1970s.
In 1981, Cataldo was convicted of providing unlicensed 9-millimeter semiautomatic pistol and a silencer to an undercover federal agent.
On October 26, 1984, Cataldo was indicted on federal racketeering charges that included extortion, theft, loansharking, illegal gambling, bribery and drug trafficking.
Because of the testimony and evidence gathered by Joseph Iannuzzi during Operation Homerun, Cataldo was convicted for a host of racketeering crimes or Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act predicate acts. In 1985, Cataldo was sentenced to 35 years in prison. On April 27, 1997, Cataldo died in prison of cancer.