Names of 20 Charged in Alleged Mob Roundup Released
Federal agents arrested several suspected members of the Gambino crime family in towns across the state.
Federal officials have charged 20 people, including alleged associates of the Gambino Crime Family of La Cosa Nostra, accused of being involved in a large-scale illegal Internet sports bookmaking operation and illegal card gambling clubs in Stamford and Hamden, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
On May 8, a federal grand jury in New Haven returned a 10-count indictment charging the following individuals Dean Depreta, 44, a.k.a. “The Kid,” “The Guy,” and “Little Baldy”, of Stamford, Richard Uva, 43, a.k.a. “Big Baldy”, of Trumbull, Thomas Uva IV, 30, a.k.a. “Little T”, of Stamford, Douglas Corbin, 51, a.k.a. “Chubby,” and “Fat Doug,” of Stamford, Joseph Borea, 55, a.k.a. “Pizza Joe,” of New Canaan, Michael Vitti, 30, (a.k.a. “Peewee”) of Stamford, Silverio Califano, 51, a.k.a. “Sil,” of Stamford, John Liquori, 42, of North Haven, Michael Pepe, 32, of North Haven, Domenico Manchisi, a.k.a. “Dom,” 64, of Shelton, George Norboe, a.k.a. “Biker George,” 40, of Wallingford, Craig Caffro, a.k.a. “Spanky,” 47, of Pompano Beach, Florida, Daniel Degruttola, a.k.a. “Dannyboy,” 32, of Stamford, Frank Potolicchio Jr., 33, of Norwalk, Victor Amereno, 41 of Stamford, John Colello, 53, of Stamford, Mitchell Engelson, 62, of New York, N.Y., Anthony Santoro, a.k.a. “Skinny,” 48, of Williamsburg, N.Y., Salvatore Ferraioli, 31 of Staten Island, N.Y., and Angelo Antolino, 32, of Port Chester, N.Y.
The arrests came after an investigation by FBI Fairfield County Organized Crime Task Force, the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation and the Stamford Police Department that includes seven months of court-authorized wiretaps and the execution of search warrants in three different states.
“With these indictments, the Organized Crime Task Force has disrupted an alleged criminal organization that commits crimes against our society,” said William Offord, Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation. “Taking assets away from illegal organizations is one of the government’s most effective tools against money laundering and organized crime.”
The indictment alleges that the Gambino Crime Family of La Cosa Nostra is headquartered in New York City and has operated in Fairfield County since at least the early 1980s under the direction of different members or associates who reported to members of the crime family in New York.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Dean Depreta, Richard Uva, Thomas Uva IV, Douglas Corbin and Joseph Borea were Stamford-based associates of the Gambino Crime Family and Depreta reported to a Gambino “Solider,” a made member of the crime family who oversaw activities in Connecticut.
All of the defendants, except Norboe, are accused of being involved in a sports bookmaking operation in which gamblers placed bets with offshore Internet sports-gambling websites, particularly www.44wager.com based in Costa Rica, and the defendants collected and disbursed funds to and from bettors locally and transferred a portion of the proceeds to Depreta and Richard Uva. The U.S. Attorney said Depreta, Uva and others then sent payments in the form of Western Union money orders to Caffro in Florida for using www.44wager.com.
The indictment alleges that the illegal card gambling clubs were in operation at 514 Glenbrook Road in Stamford, 859 East Main Street in Stamford and 2965 State Street in Hamden and a portion of the profits from these clubs was transferred to Depreta and Richard Uva.
Court documents also state that “tribute” payments were collected from individuals who ran their own independent sports-gambling operations in Fairfield County, which permitted these individuals to operate their operations in territory controlled by the Gambino Crime Family.
The indictment also charges all 20 defendants with at least one count of operation of an illegal gambling business, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of five years and a fine of up to $250,000, on each count.
Reputed Gambling Ring Boss Denied Bond In Connecticut
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (AP) _ A federal magistrate judge in Connecticut has temporarily denied bond to the reputed boss of illegal gambling rings in southwestern Connecticut allegedly connected to the Gambino crime family.
The Connecticut Post reports that U.S. Magistrate Judge Holly Fitzsimmons in Bridgeport on Monday temporarily rejected a proposal by 44-year-old Dean DePreta of Stamford to post bond using more than $2 million worth of properties.
Fitzsimmons said she needed more time to talk with probation officials about DePreta’s conduct after he was released from prison in 2004 after serving time on similar charges. A bail hearing will resume Friday.
DePreta says he’s innocent.
The FBI and state and local police arrested 20 people including DePreta last week after a nearly two-year investigation into alleged Gambino crime family activities in Fairfield County.