New Rules for mafia 'made men' - only true blood italians need apply
By Donal MacIntyre
The recent hits taken by the Italian mafia in the U.S. courts has forced a change in the way that mobsters are ‘made’ and incorporated into the family firms that still run the mob, from Little Italy in New York to the old mafia heartland of Los Vegas.
As every avid mafia movie watcher knows being a ‘made man’ is the ultimate demonstration of trust and loyalty but as some of these men have turned whistleblower to the F.B.I. the families have changed the rules to protect themselves.
The acceptance of new ‘family’ members is now strictly limited by the mob.
While there is no list of mob members within families, it is now an accepted edict that a new member can only be inducted to replace a dead one.
In addition, each mafia family is allowed to appoint two new ‘made men’ at Yuletide, as a festive gift.
In a change to the old rules, all new inductees have to Italian parenthood on both sides where as previously, an Italian father was sufficient for acceptance.
All prospective members must be presented to the other key mafia families who are allowed a fortnight to object to the name. Any informants cannot be replaced as ‘made men’ until they are killed or die naturally.
According to the former Bonanno underboss Salvatore Vitale sometimes the families would claim they had lost members they never had to induct replacements.
“I would make up names of dead guys so we could induct more members than the rules allow,” adding that on at least one occasion, he got names “out of the phone book”, New York mafia commentator, Jerry Capeci, writes in the New York magazine.
The major families are the Bonanno family with up to 145 members, the Colombo family with 85 active servicemen, the Genovese Family with 225 loyal henchmen, the Luchese Family with 120 members and the De Cavalcante Family with 50 soldiers to the name.
While the names are old, there is still force in the old families yet and these new rules will protect them and their earnings for some time to come. Capeci calculated the numbers from Court records and testimonies arising out of recent mafia court cases.