John Joseph Gotti, Jr. (October 27, 1940 – June 10, 2002) aka The Teflon Don and The Dapper Don was the former boss of the Gambino Crime Family. He is well known for taking control of the family by having his boss, Paul Castellano, and underboss Thomas Bilotti killed. In 1991, Gotti's underboss, Sammy Gravano, would become a government informant and help the FBI bring Gotti to justice.
Mafia Journalist, Selwyn Raab stated that "Gotti was the most famous gangster in the world, even people in other countries have either seen him on TV or heard of him, Gotti was well-known all over America, and all over the world, there were people in New York City that worshipped Gotti, he had around 60,000 civilians in New York City that were his biggest supporters in New York City, because he was like a robin-hood figure. He would always help people with money, food, clothes, and do other favors for them. Gotti loved the spotlight, he loved the attention, he loved the limelight, he loved being a celebrity gangster, Gotti was even more famous in his era, than Al Capone was in the 1920s. Carlo Gambino would roll over in his grave seeing what John Gotti did to the Gambino crime family. John Gotti was the most powerful mob boss in America, but he was the worst thing that happened to the mafia. It was his ego, and his love for the spotlight, and love for publicity that brought his massive criminal empire down to its last legs. Thats why so many mobsters within the mafia today despise Gotti and his legacy, and thats why no mobsters within the Italian-American Mafia went to his funeral or payed any respects to him. What John Gotti did to the Gambino crime family was the most stupidest and ignorant thing any mob boss could ever do, and what he did was he brought the Gambino crime family down on his own, he brought down the whole empire. because of his big mouth and his love for the limelight and publicity. He lost sight of what the mafia was supposed to be, no mob boss before Gotti ever did what he did, i mean guys like Carlo Gambino and Paul Castellano always kept their empire and organization in the shadows, and they kept themselves and everything else very secretive and low-key, and they were both very clever and crafty. John Gotti was not a clear or crafty guy, he was an moron for what he did. The U.S. Government never brought down John Gotti and the Gambino crime family. John Gotti brought down John Gotti and the Gambino crime family. If John Gotti would of been smart, secretive and low-key like Paul Castellano, like Carlo Gambino, then John Gotti would of probably been invincible. His reign would of lasted a lot longer than it did. He would of been untouchable, even the FBI admits that Gotti would of been virtually untouchable if he wouldn't of been so public and stupid. He might of been one of the world's most powerful crime bosses at the time, but he was far from one of the cleverest, in fact he was probably one of the most ignorant crime bosses of all time."
During his 7-year reign of the Gambino Crime Family, John Gotti was the most powerful crime boss in America. Gotti was considered by the FBI to be one of the most dangerous crime bosses in the world. Gotti was head of the most powerful, influential, largest, richest and dangerous crime syndicate in the world. Gotti ruled the Gambino Crime Family through brute force, ruthless violence, murder, intimidation and fear. Gotti ruled the Gambino crime family with an iron fist. During Gotti's reign, the Gambino Crime Family was a $40 trillion a year, vast criminal empire. At its peak, The Gambino crime family had roughly 820,000 made men nationwide, and over 2 million criminal associates all over the United States, and around the world. from the 1950 to the late 1970s, the Gambino crime family had just as many members as the United States Military. For over 60 years, the Gambino crime family was a multi-trillion dollar international criminal empire with branches, offshoots, splinter groups, hitmen, hit squads, enforcement arms, elite assassins, and assassin organization's all over the world. It is believed by the FBI that Gotti single-handedly murdered over 40 people, and ordered the deaths of over 3,000 people. For 7 years, Gotti ruled New York City with an iron fist. Gotti was considered by the FBI and Law Enforcement as "The Biggest Crime Boss in America" at the time. At his peak, John Gotti was the most famous and notorious criminal in the world. John Gotti was so powerful and feared that the United States Department of Justice considered Gotti to be "one of the most dangerous criminal's in the world." Gotti was in fact so powerful and influential to the extent of being able to intimidate Judges, Jurors, and Federal Prosecutors into acquitting him or dropping the charges against him. Gotti prefered to instill fear and intimidation over bribery, but did use bribery when necessary. The FBI has stated that Gotti controlled just about every pimp, street gang, prostitute, drug dealer, and drug trafficker operating in around New York City and Gotti demanded anywhere from 50% to 60% from every criminal and criminal gang operating in New York City, which most of the time they all accepted, and if they refused Gotti's demands then they were intimidated, brutally assaulted, tortured, murdered, or their houses and cars would be bombed by Gotti's underlings. Gotti also extorted most of the legitimate businesses in Manhattan and Queens such as stores, 5-star restaurants, fast food restaurants, 5-star hotels, motels, clubs, bars, pizzeria's, strip clubs, and many other businesses and industry's. Gotti had Police, Judges, District Attorneys, U.S. Attorneys, and Mayor's in his pocket. According to Sammy Gravano, John Gotti had three NYPD Organized Crime Task Force Detectives, one FBI Agent, two IRS Agents, two EPA Agents, and one DEA Agent in his pocket. In 1988, John Gotti achieved his greatest net worth of an estimated $2.3 billion (which is equivalent to roughly $12 Billion as of 2017) Sammy Gravano said of John Gotti in an interview documentary about his life in the mafia that "If John Gotti wouldn't of fell so much in love with himself, and if he wouldn't of been so public and so in to the media, and so out there, and if he would just listened to me when i told him that he was bringing a lot of heat on himself and the Gambino crime family by being so public and flamboyant, then he would of lasted a lot longer than he did, he could of been invincible, because John Gotti had brains, and he so much power and influences, he could of ruled America with an iron fist, if he would of just listened to me then that could of for sure happened, but he didn't, and he never listened to me. and he has nobody else to blame but himself." John Gotti is considered to be one of the most infamous criminal's in history. John Gotti is one of the most notorious mob bosses in history.
John Gotti was born in the Bronx. He was the fifth of the thirteen children of John Joseph Gotti, Sr. and his wife Philomena. John was one of five brothers who would become made men in the Gambino crime family; Gene Gotti was initiated before John due to the latter's incarceration. Peter Gotti was initiated under John's leadership in 1988 and Richard Gotti was identified as a Capo in 2002. The fifth, Vincent Gotti, was not initiated until 2002.
Gotti grew up in poverty. His father worked irregularly as a day laborer and indulged in gambling, and as an adult Gotti came to resent him for being unable to provide for his family. In school Gotti had a history of truancy and bullying other students and ultimately dropped out, while attending Franklin K. Lane High School, at the age of 16. Gotti was involved in street gangs associated with New York mafiosi from the age of 12. When he was 14, he was attempting to steal a cement mixer from a construction site when it fell, crushing his toes. This injury left him with a permanent limp. After leaving school he devoted himself to working with the mafia-associated Fulton-Rockaway Boys gang, where he met and befriended fellow future Gambino mobsters Angelo Ruggiero and Wilfred Johnson.
Gotti met his future wife, Victoria DiGiorgio, in 1958, and were married in 1962. They had five children, Victoria, Angel and three sons John A. "Junior" Gotti, Frank and Peter. Gotti attempted to work legitimately in 1962 as a presser in a coat factory and as an assistant truck driver. However, he could not stay crime free and by 1966 had been jailed twice.
Gotti's Grandson Louis " Dk Banks" Prentice is a 23 year old alleged Shooter for the No Limit Mob Boys. Dk Banks is also the oldest son of Lou Gotti-Prentice who has been alleged as the Crime Boss of the Buffalo Mafia 1985-1990. The Young Gotti is taking after his late grandfather as well as Father in the criminal business. It has been rumored that Dk Banks is associated with Multiple different groups such as the Outlaws Biker Club as well as the Black Disciples Gang. Banks has a know gang tattoo of "Nlmb" NoLimit Mob Boys on his forearm. The Young Gotti has been building his name since 2011. He was sentenced to 30 months in jail for a gun charge in 2012 and 2015. Banks has an active Music Career as he is signed to CloutGang Records.
Associate of the Gambino family Edit
Gotti's criminal career began when he became an associate of Carmine Fatico, a capo in the Anastasia/Gambino crime family. Together with his brother Gene and Angelo Ruggiero, Gotti carried out truck hijackings at Idlewild Airport. During this time, Gotti befriended fellow mob hijacker and future Bonanno family boss Joseph Massino and was given the nicknames "Black John" and "Crazy Horse." It was also around this time that Gotti met Gambino underboss Aniello Dellacroce.
In February 1968, United Airlines employees identified Gotti as the man who had signed for stolen merchandise; the FBI arrested him for the United hijacking soon after. Two months later, while out on bail, Gotti was arrested a third time for hijacking—this time for stealing a load of cigarettes worth $50,000, on the New Jersey Turnpike. Later that year, Gotti pleaded guilty to the Northwest Airlines hijacking and was sentenced to three years at Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary. Prosecutors dropped the charges for the cigarette hijacking. Gotti also pleaded guilty to the United hijacking and spent less than three years at Lewisburg.
Gotti and Ruggiero were paroled in 1972 and returned to their old crew at the Bergin Hunt and Fish Club, still working under capo Carmine Fatico. Gotti was transferred to management of the Bergin crew's illegal gambling, where he proved himself to be an effective enforcer. Fatico was indicted on loansharking charges in 1972. As a condition of his release, he could not associate with known felons. Although Gotti was not yet a made man in the Mafia due to the membership books having been closed since 1957, Fatico named Gotti the acting capo of the Bergin Crew soon after Gotti was paroled. In his new role, he frequently traveled to Dellacroce's headquarters at the Ravenite Social Club to brief the underboss on the crew's activities. Dellacroce had already taken a liking to Gotti, and the two became even closer during this time. The two were very similar— both had strong violent streaks, cursed a lot and were heavy gamblers.
Making His Bones Edit
In 1973, after Carlo Gambino's nephew Emmanuel Gambino was kidnapped and murdered, Gotti was assigned to a hit team alongside Angelo Ruggiero and Ralph Galione to kill the main suspect, Irish-American gangster James McBratney. Carlo Gambino reportedly offered membership in the crime family to the person that killed McBratney.
On May 23, 1973, at 11pm, Gotti, Galione and Ruggiero walked into Snoops Bar and Grill in Staten Island to abduct McBratney, the hit team impersonated police detectives the original plan was to take McBratney to the parking lot and kill him outside the sight of witnesses. Despite the fact that Galione aimed a gun at him and Ruggiero was holding na pair of handcuffs, McBratney realized they weren't real cops and asked "Lets see a badge". After their cover was blown Galione fired a round into the ceiling. Bar patrons, who hadn't already run outside or into the cellar, were ordered to stand against the wall. It was now just them in the bar, and although McBratney was stronger, he was up against two men, Gotti and Ruggiero. McBratney dragged the two thugs down past the end of the bar before Ralph Galione shot McBratney dead when his accomplices managed to restrain him.
In July, Ruggiero and Galione were identified from police mugshots by a barmaid and a customer from Snoops, and the men were then apprehended. However, Gotti had not been identified so he kept a low profile. On October 17, Gotti was indicted by a grand jury for murder. Gotti was annoyed that Galione had killed McBratney as he wanted to kill him and become a made man and he felt Galione had robbed him of his chance to become a made man, he wanted revenge. On December 20, 1973, John Gotti murdered Ralph Galione.
Identified by eyewitnesses and a police informant in the Bergin Crew (Wilfred Johnson), Gotti was arrested for the killing in June 1974. With the help of famous attorney Roy Cohn, he was able to strike a plea bargain and received a four-year suspended sentence for attempted manslaughter for his part in the hit.
Years later, after his death, Gotti was also identified by Joseph Massino as the killer of Vito Borelli, the boyfriend of Paul Castellano's daughter who was killed in 1975 for insulting Castellano, saying Castellano resembled Frank Perdue, the famous owner and commercial spokesman for Perdue Farms. Castellano took offense to that comment, due to Perdue's balding, elderly appearance and his comically embarrassing mannerisms. Shortly after the murder Gotti breached his suspended sentence so he spent the remaining 2 years of his sentence in jail.
Made Member and Capo Edit
Gotti was released from jail in July, 1977, after two years' imprisonment. He was subsequently initiated into the Gambino crime family, now under the command of Paul Castellano, and immediately promoted to replace Carmine Fatico as Capo of the Bergin crew. He and his crew reported directly to Aniello Dellacroce as part of the concessions given by Castellano to keep Dellacroce as underboss.
Under Gotti, the Bergin Crew was the biggest earner of the crews Dellacroce supervised. Besides his cut of his subordinates' earnings, Gotti ran his own loan sharking operation and held a no-show job as a plumbing supply salesman with a salary of $45,000 per year. Unconfirmed allegations by FBI informants in the Bergin Hunt and Fish Club claimed Gotti also financed drug deals. Gotti tried to keep most of his family uninvolved with his life of crime, with the exception of his son John A. "Junior" Gotti, who by 1982 was a mob associate.
On March 18, 1980, Gotti's youngest son, 12-year-old Frank Gotti, was run over and killed on a family friend's minibike by John Favara, a neighbor. While Frank's death was ruled an accident, Favara subsequently received death threats and, when he visited the Gottis to apologize, was attacked by Victoria Gotti with a baseball bat. On July 28, 1980, he was abducted and disappeared, presumed murdered. While the Gottis were on vacation in Florida at the time, John Gotti is still presumed to have ordered the killing.
In his last two years as the Bergin Capo, Gotti was indicted on two occasions, with both cases coming to trial after his ascension to boss of the Gambino crime family. In September 1984, Gotti was in an altercation with refrigerator mechanic Romual Piecyk, and was subsequently charged with assault and robbery. In 1985, he was indicted alongside Dellacroce and several Bergin crew members in a racketeering case by Assistant U.S. Attorney Diane Giacalone. The indictment also revealed that Gotti's friend Wilfred Johnson, one of his co-defendants, had been an FBI informant for nearly 20 years.
Rise to Power Edit
Gotti rapidly became dissatisfied with Paul Castellano's leadership, considering the new boss too isolated and greedy. Gotti and others considered Castellano to be more of a legitimate businessman than a 'real' gangster like them. In August 1983, Angelo Ruggiero and Gene Gotti were arrested for dealing heroin, based primarily on recordings from a bug in Ruggiero's house. Castellano, who had banned made men from his family from dealing drugs under threat of death, demanded transcripts of the tapes, and when Ruggiero was stalling for weeks to give them to Castellano, Castellano then threatened to kill Gotti and Ruggiero.
In 1984, Castellano was arrested and indicted in a RICO case in relation to a Auto Theft ring and murders committed by Gambino family hitman Roy DeMeo and his crew. The following year Castellano received a second indictment in the denominated "Commission Case". Facing life imprisonment for either case, Castellano arranged for Gotti to serve as an acting boss alongside Thomas Bilotti, Castellano's favorite capo, and Thomas Gambino in his absence. Gotti, meanwhile, began conspiring with fellow disgruntled Gambino family members Sammy Gravano, Frank DeCicco, Robert DiBernardo and Joseph Armone (collectively dubbed "the Fist" by themselves) to overthrow Castellano, insisting despite the boss' inaction that Castellano would eventually try to kill him. The conspirators had the support of the bosses-in-waiting of the other families in the Commission case as well as the complicity of Gambino consigliere Joseph N. Gallo.
After Dellacroce died of cancer on December 2, 1985, Castellano revised his succession plan: appointing Thomas Bilotti as underboss, Thomas Gambino as the sole acting boss if Castellano is sent to prison, while making plans to break up Gotti's crew. Infuriated by this, and Castellano's refusal to attend Dellacroce's wake, Gotti resolved to kill him.
DeCicco tipped Gotti off that he would be having a meeting with Castellano and several other Gambino mobsters at Sparks Steak House on December 16, 1985, and Gotti chose to take the opportunity. The evening of the meeting, when the boss and underboss arrived, they were ambushed and shot dead by assassins under Gotti's command. Gotti watched the hit from his car with Salvatore Gravano.
Several days after the murder, Gotti was named head of a three-man committee to temporarily run the family pending the election of a new boss, along with Consigliere Joseph N. Gallo and Capo Frank DeCicco. It was also announced that an internal investigation into Castellano's murder was well underway. However, it was an open secret that Gotti was acting boss in all but name, and nearly all of the family's capos knew he'd been the one behind the hit. He was formally acclaimed as the new boss of the Gambino family at a meeting of 320 capos held on January 15, 1986. He appointed his co-conspirator DeCicco as the new underboss while retaining Gallo as consigliere.
Boss of the Gambino crime family Edit
Identified as both Paul Castellano's likely murderer and his successor, John Gotti quickly rose to fame throughout 1986. At the time of Gotti's regime, the Gambino crime family was the most powerful, influential, richest, largest and dangerous crime syndicate in the world, with an annual income of over $40 Trillion. In the book Underboss, Gravano estimated that Gotti himself had an annual income of $3 billion, and a net worth of a staggering $12 billion in 1988, (which is equivalent to an estimated $35 Billion as of 2017) during his years as boss.
To protect himself legally, Gotti banned members of the Gambino family from accepting plea bargains that acknowledged the existence of the organization. Gotti maintained a genial public image in an attempt to play down press releases that depicted him as a ruthless mobster. He reportedly would offer coffee to FBI agents assigned to tail him.
Gotti's newfound fame had at least one positive effect; upon the revelation of his attacker's occupation, and amid reports of intimidation by the Gambinos, Romual Piecyk decided not to testify against Gotti, and when the trial commenced in March 1986 he testified he was unable to remember who attacked him. The case was promptly dismissed, with the New York Daily News summarizing the proceedings with the headline "I Forgotti!"
On April 13, 1986, underboss Frank DeCicco was killed when his car was bombed following a visit to Castellano loyalist James Failla. The bombing was carried out by Lucchese crime family bosses Vittorio Amuso and Anthony Casso, under orders from bosses Anthony Corallo and Vincent Gigante, to avenge Castellano and Bilotti by killing their successors; Gotti also planned to visit Failla that day but canceled, and the bomb was detonated after a soldier who rode with DeCicco was mistaken for the boss, leading the Gambinos to initially suspect that Zips (Sicilian mobsters working in the United States) were behind it; Zips aka the Sicilian Mafia were extremely notorious for using high-tech bombs.
Following the bombing, Judge Eugene Nickerson, presiding over Gotti's racketeering trial, rescheduled to avoid a jury tainted by the resulting publicity while prosecutors had Gotti's bail revoked due to evidence of intimidation in the Piecyk case. From jail, Gotti ordered the murder of Robert DiBernardo, which was carried out by Sammy Gravano and Joseph Paruta on June 5, 1986; both DiBernardo and Ruggiero had been vying to succeed DeCicco as underboss until Ruggiero accused DiBernardo of challenging Gotti's leadership, Ruggiero was also in debt to Dibernardo to the tune of $500,000. When Ruggiero, also under indictment, had his bail revoked for his abrasive behavior in preliminary hearings, a frustrated Gotti instead promoted Joseph Armone to underboss.
Jury selection for the racketeering case began again in August 1986, with Gotti standing trial alongside Gene Gotti, Wilfred Johnson (who, despite being exposed as an informant, refused to turn state's evidence), Leonard DiMaria, Anthony Rampino, Nicholas Corozzo and John Carneglia. At this point, the Gambino's were able to compromise the case when George Pape, a friend of The Westies boss Bosko Radonjich, was empaneled; through Radonjich Pape contacted Sammy Gravano and agreed to sell his vote on the jury for $60,000. Pape's actions meant that Gotti entered the courtroom knowing that he was at least assured of a hung jury.
In the trial's opening statements on September 25, Gotti's defense attorney Bruce Cutler denied the existence of the Gambino crime family and framed the government's entire effort as a personal vendetta. His main defense strategy during the prosecution was to attack the credibility of the prosecutions witnesses. In Gotti's defense Cutler called bank robber Matthew Traynor, a would-be prosecution witness dropped for unreliability, who testified that one prosecutor offered him drugs and her panties as a masturbation aid in exchange for his testimony; Traynor's allegations would be dismissed by Judge Nickerson as "wholly unbelievable" after the trial, and he was subsequently convicted of perjury. Despite Cutler's defense and critiques about the prosecution's performance, according to mob writers Jerry Capeci and Gene Mustain, when the jury's deliberations began a majority were in favor of convicting Gotti. Pape, however, held out for acquittal until the rest of the jury began to fear their own safety would be compromised. On March 13, 1987, they acquitted Gotti and his co-defendants of all charges. Five years later Pape was convicted of obstruction of justice for his part in the fix.
In the face of previous Mafia convictions, particularly the success of the Commission trial, Gotti's acquittal was a major upset that further added to his reputation. The American media dubbed Gotti "The Teflon Don" in reference to the failure of any charges to "stick." and because he was seemingly invincible, and because he paid off a lot of jurors and Judges.
Reorganization of the Gambino family Edit
While Gotti himself had escaped conviction, his associates were not so lucky. The other two men in the Gambino administration, underboss Joseph Armone and consigliere Joseph N. Gallo, had been indicted on racketeering charges in 1986 and were both convicted in December, 1987. The heroin trial of Gotti's fellow Gambino crime family capos Angelo Ruggiero and Gene Gotti also commenced in June of that year.
Prior to their convictions, Gotti allowed Gallo to retire and promoted Sammy Gravano in his place while slating Frank Locascio to serve as acting underboss in the event of Armone's imprisonment. The Gambino's also worked to compromise the heroin trial's jury, resulting in two mistrials. When the terminally ill Ruggiero was severed and released in 1989, Gotti refused to contact him, blaming him for the Gambino's misfortunes. According to Gravano, Gotti also considered murdering Ruggiero but Gravano convinced him that it wasn't worth it, and when he finally died, "I literally had to drag him to the funeral."
Beginning in January, 1988, Gotti, against Gravano's advice, required his capos to meet with him at the Ravenite Social Club once a week. Regarded by Gene Gotti as an unnecessary vanity-inspired risk, and by FBI Director Bruce Mouw as anti thematic to the "secret society", this move allowed FBI surveillance to record and identify much of the Gambino hierarchy. In late 1988, The FBI also bugged the Ravenite, but failed to produce any high-quality incriminating recordings.
In 1988, Gotti, Vincent Gigante and Lucchese crime family boss Vittorio Amuso attended the first Commission meeting since the Commission trial. In 1986, future Lucchese underboss Anthony Casso had been injured in an unauthorized hit by Gambino capo Michael Paradiso. The following year, the FBI warned Gotti they had recorded Genovese crime family consigliere Louis Manna discussing another hit on him and his brother Gene. To avoid a war, the leaders of the three families met, denied knowledge of their violence against one another, and agreed to "communicate better". The bosses also agreed to allow Colombo acting boss Vittorio Orena to join the Commission, but Gigante, wary of giving Gotti a majority by admitting another ally, blocked the reentry of the Bonannos' and Joseph Massino.
Gotti was nevertheless able to take complete control of the New Jersey DeCavalcante crime family in 1989. According to the DeCavalcante capo-turned-informant Anthony Rotondo, Gotti attended his father's wake with numerous other Gambino mobsters in a "show of force" and forced boss John Riggi to agree to run his family on the Gambino's behalf. The DeCavalcante family remained in the Gambino's sphere of influence until Gotti's imprisonment.
Gotti's son, John A. "Junior" Gotti, was initiated into the Gambino family on Christmas Eve, 1989. According to fellow mobster Michael DiLeonardo, initiated in the same ceremony, Sammy Gravano held the ceremony to keep Gotti from being accused of nepotism. Gotti Jr. was promptly promoted to capo. Other Gambino crime family members made that night were Dominick Pizzonia and Bartholomew Boriello.
1989 Assault acquittal Edit
On the evening of January 23, 1989, Gotti was arrested outside the Ravenite and charged with ordering the 1986 assault of union official John O'Connor. O'Connor, a leader in the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America Local 608 who was later convicted of racketeering himself, was believed to have ordered an attack on a Gambino-associated restaurant that had snubbed the union and was subsequently shot and wounded by members of the The Westies Irish mob. To link Gotti to the case, state prosecutors had a recording of Gotti discussing O'Connor and announcing his intention to "Bust him up," and the testimony of Westies gangster James McElroy. Gotti was released on $100,000 bail.
Conviction and Downfall Edit
On December 11, 1990, FBI agents raided the Ravenite Social Club, arresting John Gotti, Sammy Gravano and Frank Locascio. Gotti was charged, in this new racketeering case, with five murders, those of Paul Castellano and Thomas Bilotti, Robert DiBernardo, Liborio Milito and Louis DiBono, conspiracy to murder DeCavalcante crime family Capo Gaetano Vastola, racketeering, extortion, obstruction of justice, bribery, and tax evasion. Based on tapes from FBI bugs played at pretrial hearings the Gambino administration was denied bail and attorneys Bruce Cutler and Gerald Shargel were both disqualified from defending Gotti after determining they had worked as "in-house counsel" for the Gambino organization. Gotti subsequently hired Albert Krieger, a Miami attorney who had worked with Joseph "Bananas" Bonanno, to replace Cutler.
The tapes also created a rift between Gotti and Gravano, showing the Gambino crime family boss describing his newly-appointed underboss as too greedy and attempting to frame Gravano as the main force behind the murders of DiBernardo, Milito and DiBono. Gotti's attempt at reconciliation failed, leaving Gravano disillusioned with the Gambino crime family and doubtful on his chances of winning the newest case without Shargel, his former attorney. Gravano ultimately opted to turn state's evidence out of fear that he would be killed by Gotti, formally agreeing to testify on November 13, 1991.
Gotti and Locascio's trial commenced with the prosecution's opening statements on February 12, 1992; prosecutors Andrew Maloney and John Gleeson began their case by playing tapes showing Gotti discussing Gambino crime family business, including murders he approved, and confirming the animosity between Gotti and Castellano to establish the former's motive to kill his boss. After calling an eyewitness of the Castellano hit who identified Gotti soldier John Carneglia as one of the men who shot Bilotti they then brought Gravano to testify on March 2.
On the stand Gravano confirmed Gotti's place in the structure of the Gambino crime family and described in detail the conspiracy to assassinate Gambino crime family boss Paul Castellano and gave a full description of the hit and its aftermath. Krieger, and Locasio's attorney Anthony Cardinale, proved unable to shake Gravano during cross-examination. After additional testimony and tapes the government rested its case on March 24.
Five of Krieger and Cardinale's intended six witnesses were ruled irrelevant or extraneous, leaving only Gotti's tax attorney Murray Appleman to testify on his behalf. The defense also attempted unsuccessfully to have a mistrial declared based on Maloney's closing remarks. Gotti himself became increasingly hostile during the trial, and at one point Glasser threatened to remove him from the courtroom. Among other outbursts, Gotti called Gravano a junkie while his attorneys sought to discuss Gravano's past steroid use, and he equated the dismissal of a juror to the fixing of the 1919 World Series.
On April 2, 1992, after only 14 hours of deliberation, the jury found Gotti guilty on all charges of the indictment (Locasio was found guilty on all but one). James Fox, director of the New York City FBI, announced at a press conference, "The Teflon Don is gone. The don is covered with Velcro, and all the charges stuck". On June 23, 1992, Glasser sentenced both defendants to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole and a $250,000 fine.
Incarceration and Death Edit
Gotti was incarcerated at the United States Penitentiary at Marion, Illinois. He spent the majority of his sentence in effective solitary confinement, only allowed out of his cell for one hour a day. His final appeal was rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1994.
While in prison, Gotti was physically assaulted by an African-American inmate named Walter Johnson, whom was a member of a brutal and notorious African-American prison gang known as The Black Guerrilla Family, in addition, of Johnson assaulting Gotti, Gotti then set up a meeting with the Aryan Brotherhood, and he offered $40,000 to the Aryan Brotherhood to brutally kill Walter Johnson, the black inmate who had hit him in the back of the head with a lead pipe. The Aryan Brotherhood accepted Gotti's offer, however the hit on Walter Johnson did not go as planned because some prison guards found out of the hit on Johnson and immediately put him in protective custody. Gotti is also believed to have hired the Brotherhood for another aborted hit on Frank Locascio after learning the disgruntled acting consigliere sought to kill him, The Aryan Brotherhood never carried out the murder on Frank Locascio either because helot switched to different prison the day that the Aryan Brotherhood was going to kill him.
Despite his imprisonment, and pressure from the Commission to stand down, Gotti is believed to have held on to his position as boss of the Gambino crime family with his brother Peter Gotti and his son John A. "Junior" Gotti relaying orders on his behalf. By 1998, when he was indicted on racketeering, Gotti, Jr. was believed to be the acting boss of the family. against his father's wishes, John Jr. pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six years and five months imprisonment in 1999. He maintains he has since left the Gambino family. Peter Gotti subsequently became acting boss, and is believed to have formally succeeded his brother as boss shortly after John Gotti's death.
John Jr.'s indictment brought further stress to John Gotti's marriage. Victoria DiGiorgio Gotti, up to that point unaware of her son's involvement in the mob, blamed her husband for ruining her son's life and threatened to leave him unless he allowed John A. "Junior" Gotti to leave the mafia.
In 1998, Gotti was diagnosed with throat cancer and sent to the United States Medical Center for Federal Prisoners in Springfield, Missouri for surgery. While the tumor was removed, the cancer was discovered to have returned two years later and Gotti was transferred back to Springfield, where he would spend the remainder of his life. Gotti's condition rapidly declined, and he died on June 10, 2002, at the age of 61. One source claimed, "If you look on his death certificate he choked on his own vomit and blood. He paid for his sins". The Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn announced that Gotti's family would not be permitted to have a Mass of Christian Burial but allowed it after the burial.
Gotti's funeral was held in a non-church facility. After the funeral, an estimated 10,000 onlookers followed the procession, which passed Gotti's Bergin Hunt and Fish Club, to the grave site. Gotti's body was interred in a crypt next to his son Frank Gotti. Gotti's brother Peter was unable to attend owing to his incarceration. In an apparent repudiation of Gotti's leadership and legacy, the other New York mafia families sent no representatives to the funeral.
Popular Culture Edit
As early as 1990 John Gotti was already such a prominent mobster as to be the inspiration for the character Joey Zasa, portrayed by Joe Mantegna, in The Godfather Part III. Gotti and Zasa were both mafia bosses who were Flamboyant and liked publicity, they were both drug dealers.
Following his conviction Gotti himself has been portrayed in four TV movies:
The charecter of Frank Mauchci on the season 1 two two episodes of Law and Order was based on Gotti.
Getting Gotti – 1994 CBS TV movie, portrayed by Anthony John Denison.
Gotti – 1996 HBO TV movie adapted from Gotti: Rise and Fall, portrayed by Armand Assante.
Witness to the Mob – 1998 NBC miniseries, portrayed by Tom Sizemore.
Boss of Bosses – 2001 TNT TV movie adapted from the book of the same name, portrayed by Sonny Marinelli.
Another John Gotti biographical film, also titled Gotti, is in preproduction for a theatrical release, with John Travolta cast as Gotti.
a documentary shown on the Biography channel was made about John Gotti.
Gotti also features in the fourth episode of UK history TV channel Yesterday's documentary series Mafia's Greatest Hits.
Danny Nucci plays John Gotti in the film Sinatra Club.
The Fun Lovin' Criminals song "King Of New York" from their album Come Find Yourself references Gotti.
“When I think of the American Indian I think of their courage, strength, pride, their respect and loyalty toward their brothers. I honor the reverence they share for tradition and life. These traits are hungered for in a society that is unfortunately plagued by those whose only values are self-centered and directed at others' expense."
“He who is deaf, blind & silent, lives a thousand years in peace."
“I never lie to any man because I don't fear anyone. The only time you lie is when you are afraid."
"If you think your boss is stupid, remember: you wouldn't have a job if he was any smarter."
"Don't carry a gun. It's nice to have them close by, but don't carry them. You might get arrested."
“Always be nice to bankers. Always be nice to pension fund managers. Always be nice to the media. In that order.”
"Three to one odds I beat this."
La Cosa Nostra will live on forever, it could be an hour from now, it could tomorrow, it could a 100 years from now, when I'm dead in my grave, there will always be a La Cosa Nostra.
People Murdered by John Gotti Edit
John Gotti was convicted for 5 murders in his 1992 trial, but he's responsible for many more murders than that. it is believed by the FBI that John Gotti ordered the deaths of around 600-1,000 people.
1.James McBratney/associate/Irish Mob/May 22nd 1973/Personal/ Gotti was the hitman along with Angelo Ruggiero and Ralph Galione. McBratney was murdered because he kidnapped and killed Carlo Gambino's nephew Emmanuel.
2.Ralph Galione/associate/Gambino Crime Family/December 20th 1973/Personal/ Gotti murdered Galione because he killed McBratney and Gotti thought Galione had robbed him of his chance of becoming a made man so murdered him in revenge.
3.Vito Borielli/none/independent/1975/Personal/ Gotti was the hitman, Borelli was murdered because he disrespected Paul Castellano.
4.Tommy DeSimone/associate/Lucchese Crime Family/January 14th 1979/Personal/ Gotti and Thomas Agro murdered Tommy DeSimone in revenge because he killed two gambino made men.
5.Anthony Plate/associate/Gambino Crime Family/Summer 1979/Personal/ Gotti was the hitman along with Angelo Ruggiero, Plate was murdered because he was involved in the robbery of Anthony Gaggi which left him injured.
6.John Favarra/none/independent/March 18th 1980/Ordered It/ Gotti had Favarra murdered because he had accidently run over and killed Gotti's youngest son Frank.
7.Paul Castellano/Boss/Gambino Crime Family/December 16th 1985/At the scene/ To become boss of the Gambino crime family.
8.Thomas Bilotti/Underboss/Gambino Crime Family/December 16th 1985/At the scene/ Bilotti was killed because he was Castellano's bodyguard.
9.Robert DiBernardo/Capo/Gambino Crime Family/June 5th 1986/Ordered It/ DiBernardo was murdered because he was plotting against Gotti.
10.Liborio Milito/Soldier/Gambino Crime Family/March 8th 1988/Ordered It/ For disrespecting Capo Louis Vallario.
11.Wilfred Johnson/associate/Gambino Crime Family/August 28th 1988/Ordered It/ Johnson was killed because he was an informant.
12.Fred Weiss/none/Independent/September 11th 1989/Ordered It/ Weiss was murdered to prevent him becoming an informant
13.Eddie Garofalo/Demolition Contractor/Independent/August 9th 1990/Ordered It/ Gotti gave permission to Gravano to have Garafalo killed because they were involved in a business dispute.
14.Louis DiBono/Soldier/Gambino Crime Family/October 4th 1990/Ordered It/ DiBono was murdered because he was stealing from the Gambino crime family.