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Re: [americanmafia] Re: Washington, DC organized crime

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  • David Critchley
    Thanks for the information.  What I was referring to anyhow, was whether these was an LCN territory in DC.  We do know that alleged members of crime
    Message 1 of 51 , Feb 4, 2011
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      Thanks for the information.  What I was referring to anyhow, was whether these was an LCN "territory" in DC.  We do know that alleged members of crime families have operated there as individuals or in partnerships.  But there again, they operate in many other areas, going where the action is the same as any other entrepreneur.  However, these are not territories in the sense of a crime family being based there, in the way (for example) that the Profaci family is based in Brooklyn, NY and so it's chief centres of enterprise take place there. 



      --- On Thu, 3/2/11, Pat Clawson <patrickclawson@...> wrote:

      From: Pat Clawson <patrickclawson@...>
      Subject: [americanmafia] Re: Washington, DC organized crime
      To: americanmafia@yahoogroups.com
      Date: Thursday, 3 February, 2011, 1:40

       


      I am amused by the belief by some on this list that there was and is
      no organized crime in Washington, DC.

      This is nonsense perpetuated by clueless journalists and law
      enforcement officials who somehow believe the LCN is the end-all of
      organized crime.

      Organized crime has been alive and kicking in the DC and Baltimore
      regions for generations.

      I know because I am a former CNN and NBC News investigative reporter
      who worked in the DC area for almost 30 years. My specialty was
      organized crime investigations. I also have experience in
      investigating OC in many other parts of the country including Detroit,
      NYC, Chicago, New Orleans, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Seattle and other
      places. I learned a long time ago that you determine if "organized
      crime" is present by the nature of criminal activities taking place,
      not just by the ethnic origins of the criminals.

      There have been extensive and deep-rooted organized crime families
      operating in the DC region for over 75 years. These organizations did
      not fit the typical LCN family profile, but they were organized crime
      families just the same. Traditional LCN figures have worked in the DC
      region for decades as well.

      As the Kefauver Committee reported:

      "With regard to the District of Columbia, this committee has, on
      several occasions, received evidence that the city of Washington may
      be a pivotal point for gambling operations of considerable size. There
      is also evidence before this committee of widespread traffic in
      narcotic drugs within the District. The committee therefore strongly
      recommends that an appropriate committee of the Senate undertake a
      thorough investigation of crime conditions in the District of
      Columbia, including the relationship of such conditions to crime in
      adjoining areas."

      For much of the 20th Century - especially the decades following World
      War II - the DC crime scene was dominated by home-grown organized
      crime syndicates that worked closely with LCN families in other parts
      of the county. These syndicates were often organized along racial
      lines, but they also cooperated inter-racially when it made economic
      sense to do so.

      For decades, the main moneymakers was gambling, especially the slot
      machine and pinball machine rackets operated in Southern Maryland.
      Just across from the DC line, slot machines and illegal casinos
      flourished for decades in Prince Georges, Anne Arundel, Calvert,
      Charles and St. Mary's Counties. The slots were outlawed in 1967. The
      numbers racket also was a mainstay throughout DC and Maryland.

      The primary white OC faction that operated there was headed by Jimmy
      LaFontaine, who died in 1947. Afterwards, the leadership shifted to
      Joseph Francis Nesline (now deceased) who had many alliances with New
      York LCN alliances, including Charlie "The Blade" Tourine of the
      Genovese family, Mickey Zaffarano of the Bonanno family and longtime
      Meyer Lansky associate Dino Cellini. Another important DC rackets
      leader aligned with Nesline was David "Shaggs" McGowan, a major
      cocaine trafficker. And let's not forget Pete Gianaris, a world-class
      bookmaker who catered to a who's who of Washington's Establishment,
      Capitol Hill and the DC press corps, or the infamous Roger "White Top"
      Simkins.

      In the Eighties, two reputed Sicilian Mafia members, Ben Centurino and
      Giuseppe Cottone, were convicted of running cocaine out of several DC
      area pizzerias. Cottone's brother, Salvatore Cottone, was later
      convicted of masterminding an organized crime syndicate in the
      DC/Virginia area that dealt dope and torched restaurants.

      One of the nation's most important OC money launderers was DC
      businessman and Bethesda, Maryland resident, Alex Dandy (now
      deceased). He helped engineer the collapse of the Northern Ohio Bank
      in Cleveland through fraudulent loans to several of America's most
      important LCN figures. Alex was connected to LCN families in New York,
      Cleveland and Detroit, and one his regular bodyguards was a Gambino
      member suspected of multiple homicides in New York and New Jersey.

      At one time, Detroit LCN figures had ownership interests in a
      racetrack located just outside of DC.

      Black organized crime has been deeply intrenched in Washington for
      decades, and blacks controlled the numbers racket and much of the drug
      trade. Among the better known figures: Lawrence "Slippery" Jackson,
      Linwood Gray, Cornell Jones, Rayful Edmond and others.

      Latino OC groups like MS-13 and Asian OC groups also call DC home. And
      so the Pagans Motorcycle Club

      Also, let's not forget that there was a steady stream of LCN figures
      coming in and out of DC for decades because Washington was the
      headquarters city for the Teamsters and Laborers unions.

      As for Baltimore, that city has a rich and colorful organized crime
      scene just the same as New York City, Chicago or Detroit. But again,
      the organized crime was - and is - dominated by local players, many of
      whom have LCN connections. Black organized crime in Baltimore, which
      has dominated the narcotics trade there for decades, is very powerful.

      There is a lot more to organized crime than just the LCN.

      Pat Clawson
      Flint, MI/Washington, DC
      patrickclawson@...


    • David Critchley
      There s also the very common fault of not defining what they mean by organized crime.   For some, it just includes the LCN.  For others, also the
      Message 51 of 51 , Feb 4, 2011
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        There's also the very common fault of not defining what they mean by "organized crime."  For some, it just includes the LCN.  For others, also the non-Italians.  There again, do we include your friendly neighbourhood bookie as part of organized crime or the large crime organizations?  Clarity please.



        --- On Thu, 3/2/11, Ryan A <ryan_12177@...> wrote:

        From: Ryan A <ryan_12177@...>
        Subject: [americanmafia] Re: Washington, DC organized crime
        To: americanmafia@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Thursday, 3 February, 2011, 19:44

         

        Pat,

        I would also point out that both Alex and I are from the Baltimore/DC area and both know exactly how organized crime is in those cities as we've watched it first hand.

        But yes, some do act as though only the Mafia is "organized", but I don't think you'll find that view among the majority of people who have chosen italian organized crime as a research field.

        --- In americanmafia@yahoogroups.com, "Alex Hortis" <alex.hortis@...> wrote:
        >
        > Pat,
        >
        > Everyone would be well-served to respond what was actually said on this board, rather than to attack someone by caricaturing what they said.
        >
        > Please read what was posted on the board and in the New Republic article. The title is: Gangster Paradise? Not Quite. Why hasn't THE MAFIA ever made INROADS in D.C.? The New Republic (Jan. 25, 2011)(emphasis added).
        >
        > The fact that a few wiseguys operated in an area at various times hardly means that "the Mafia" had made "inroads" into it. By that definition, Des Moines, Iowa was a Mafia hotbed.
        >
        > If anything, it's that kind of sensationalistic reporting which fuels the myth of a nationwide Mafia "EMPIRE".
        >
        > The regular posters on this board are well aware that organized crime exists outside of the Mafia. David himself has written on this point.
        >
        >
        > --- In americanmafia@yahoogroups.com, Pat Clawson <patrickclawson@> wrote:
        > >
        > >
        > > I am amused by the belief by some on this list that there was and is
        > > no organized crime in Washington, DC.
        > >
        > > This is nonsense perpetuated by clueless journalists and law
        > > enforcement officials who somehow believe the LCN is the end-all of
        > > organized crime.
        > >
        > > Organized crime has been alive and kicking in the DC and Baltimore
        > > regions for generations.
        > >
        > > I know because I am a former CNN and NBC News investigative reporter
        > > who worked in the DC area for almost 30 years. My specialty was
        > > organized crime investigations. I also have experience in
        > > investigating OC in many other parts of the country including Detroit,
        > > NYC, Chicago, New Orleans, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Seattle and other
        > > places. I learned a long time ago that you determine if "organized
        > > crime" is present by the nature of criminal activities taking place,
        > > not just by the ethnic origins of the criminals.
        > >
        > > There have been extensive and deep-rooted organized crime families
        > > operating in the DC region for over 75 years. These organizations did
        > > not fit the typical LCN family profile, but they were organized crime
        > > families just the same. Traditional LCN figures have worked in the DC
        > > region for decades as well.
        > >
        > > As the Kefauver Committee reported:
        > >
        > > "With regard to the District of Columbia, this committee has, on
        > > several occasions, received evidence that the city of Washington may
        > > be a pivotal point for gambling operations of considerable size. There
        > > is also evidence before this committee of widespread traffic in
        > > narcotic drugs within the District. The committee therefore strongly
        > > recommends that an appropriate committee of the Senate undertake a
        > > thorough investigation of crime conditions in the District of
        > > Columbia, including the relationship of such conditions to crime in
        > > adjoining areas."
        > >
        > > For much of the 20th Century - especially the decades following World
        > > War II - the DC crime scene was dominated by home-grown organized
        > > crime syndicates that worked closely with LCN families in other parts
        > > of the county. These syndicates were often organized along racial
        > > lines, but they also cooperated inter-racially when it made economic
        > > sense to do so.
        > >
        > > For decades, the main moneymakers was gambling, especially the slot
        > > machine and pinball machine rackets operated in Southern Maryland.
        > > Just across from the DC line, slot machines and illegal casinos
        > > flourished for decades in Prince Georges, Anne Arundel, Calvert,
        > > Charles and St. Mary's Counties. The slots were outlawed in 1967. The
        > > numbers racket also was a mainstay throughout DC and Maryland.
        > >
        > > The primary white OC faction that operated there was headed by Jimmy
        > > LaFontaine, who died in 1947. Afterwards, the leadership shifted to
        > > Joseph Francis Nesline (now deceased) who had many alliances with New
        > > York LCN alliances, including Charlie "The Blade" Tourine of the
        > > Genovese family, Mickey Zaffarano of the Bonanno family and longtime
        > > Meyer Lansky associate Dino Cellini. Another important DC rackets
        > > leader aligned with Nesline was David "Shaggs" McGowan, a major
        > > cocaine trafficker. And let's not forget Pete Gianaris, a world-class
        > > bookmaker who catered to a who's who of Washington's Establishment,
        > > Capitol Hill and the DC press corps, or the infamous Roger "White Top"
        > > Simkins.
        > >
        > > In the Eighties, two reputed Sicilian Mafia members, Ben Centurino and
        > > Giuseppe Cottone, were convicted of running cocaine out of several DC
        > > area pizzerias. Cottone's brother, Salvatore Cottone, was later
        > > convicted of masterminding an organized crime syndicate in the
        > > DC/Virginia area that dealt dope and torched restaurants.
        > >
        > > One of the nation's most important OC money launderers was DC
        > > businessman and Bethesda, Maryland resident, Alex Dandy (now
        > > deceased). He helped engineer the collapse of the Northern Ohio Bank
        > > in Cleveland through fraudulent loans to several of America's most
        > > important LCN figures. Alex was connected to LCN families in New York,
        > > Cleveland and Detroit, and one his regular bodyguards was a Gambino
        > > member suspected of multiple homicides in New York and New Jersey.
        > >
        > > At one time, Detroit LCN figures had ownership interests in a
        > > racetrack located just outside of DC.
        > >
        > > Black organized crime has been deeply intrenched in Washington for
        > > decades, and blacks controlled the numbers racket and much of the drug
        > > trade. Among the better known figures: Lawrence "Slippery" Jackson,
        > > Linwood Gray, Cornell Jones, Rayful Edmond and others.
        > >
        > > Latino OC groups like MS-13 and Asian OC groups also call DC home. And
        > > so the Pagans Motorcycle Club
        > >
        > > Also, let's not forget that there was a steady stream of LCN figures
        > > coming in and out of DC for decades because Washington was the
        > > headquarters city for the Teamsters and Laborers unions.
        > >
        > > As for Baltimore, that city has a rich and colorful organized crime
        > > scene just the same as New York City, Chicago or Detroit. But again,
        > > the organized crime was - and is - dominated by local players, many of
        > > whom have LCN connections. Black organized crime in Baltimore, which
        > > has dominated the narcotics trade there for decades, is very powerful.
        > >
        > > There is a lot more to organized crime than just the LCN.
        > >
        > > Pat Clawson
        > > Flint, MI/Washington, DC
        > > patrickclawson@
        > >
        >


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