NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) – Federal prosecutors on Thursday announced the arrest of 10 members and associates of the DeCavalcante organized crime family of La Cosa Nostra, which has long been thought to be the real-life inspiration for HBO’s “The Sopranos.”
They’re listed on the criminal complaint with nicknames like “Knuckles” and “Whitey,” and they’re accused of plotting to commit murder, distribute drugs and promote prostitution.
The suspects include reputed captain 71-year-old Charles Stango, of Henderson, Nevada, and 72-year-old Frank Nigro, of Toms River, a reputed consigliere, or adviser. The criminal complaint alleges the DeCavalcante family operates under the direction of New York’s Gambino crime family.
Prosecutors allege Stango sought and obtained permission from Nigro to kill a family member in New Jersey. Authorities say Stango discussed his plans with an undercover agent, telling him the man had insulted an acting boss of the family and was “out of control.”
The intended victim “had to meet death or you gotta maim him or you just gotta put him in a wheelchair for the rest of his life,” Stango told the agent, according to authorities.
Prosecutors claim Stango and his son, Anthony, also planned to operate a high-end escort service in the Toms River area.
Three other New Jersey men, 34-year-old John Capozzi, 23-year-old Mario Galli and 37-year-old Nicholas Degidio were also charged with cocaine distribution.
Some suspects are due in federal court Thursday afternoon in Newark. Stango is due to appear in a Las Vegas courtroom.
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