Two Mafia Members Sentenced to Life Imprisonment for Murder, Witness Tampering
By: Jim Kouri, CPP
(The following news story is based on reports and documents obtained by the National Association of Chiefs of Police from the US Department of Justice’s Criminal Division.)
Colombo organized crime family acting boss Alphonse â€œAllie Boyâ€ Persico and administration member John â€œJackieâ€ DeRoss were sentenced to life imprisonment for their roles in the 1999 murder of Colombo underboss William â€œWild Billâ€ Cutolo, and for tampering with witnesses. The sentencing was held before United States District Judge Joanne Seybert, at the U.S. Courthouse in Central Islip, New York.
During an eight-week trial in late 2007, the evidence established that Persico and DeRoss ordered that Cutolo be murdered because they believed he was about to take control of the Colombo family from Persico, and to serve as retribution for Cutoloâ€™s actions during the bloody â€œColombo Warâ€ in the early 1990s.
During the war, Cutolo, on behalf of the faction loyal to Vic Orena, tried to wrest control of the Colombo family from Alphonse Persico and his father, Carmine â€œThe Snakeâ€ Persico, the familyâ€™s official boss. As part of the murder plot, Persico summoned Cutolo to a meeting on the afternoon of May 26, 1999. That afternoon, an auto mechanic dropped Cutolo off at a park near 92nd Street and Shore Road in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, the designated place for the meeting with Persico.
Cutolo was never seen or heard from again. That evening, DeRoss kept watch over Cutoloâ€™s crew at Cutoloâ€™s Friendly Bocce Social Club in Brooklyn, where the crew was awaiting Cutoloâ€™s arrival for their traditional Wednesday dinner. When Cutolo failed to show for dinner, DeRoss feigned surprise and directed Cutoloâ€™s son, William Cutolo, Jr., to telephone his father. Early the next morning, May 27, DeRoss, on Persicoâ€™s orders, arrived at Cutoloâ€™s home and began questioning Cutoloâ€™s wife, Marguerite Cutolo, about the location of Cutoloâ€™s money.
Persico and DeRoss were also found guilty of tampering with witnesses Marguerite Cutolo (Cutoloâ€™s widow), Barbara Jean Cutolo (one of Cutoloâ€™s daughters), and William Cutolo, Jr., after Cutoloâ€™s disappearance. The trial evidence included a recording that William Cutolo, Jr. secretly made of DeRoss threatening the Cutolo family in March 2000, several months after it was publicly disclosed that the FBI was investigating Persico in connection with the Cutolo murder.
During the meeting, DeRoss ordered the Cutolo family to provide false, exculpatory information to a private investigator hired by Persico. DeRoss threatened that if the Cutolo family did not assist Persico, Marguerite Cutolo could be â€œhurt,â€ as could the â€œlittle . . . kids,â€ a reference to Barbara Jean Cutoloâ€™s seven- and five-year-old daughters.
Marguerite and Barbara Jean Cutolo both testified at trial that, as a result of DeRossâ€™s threats, the Cutolos withheld information about the murder from law enforcement authorities for years. The information included a statement that Cutolo, Sr. made to Marguerite Cutolo on May 26, 1999, that he believed he was going to meet that day with Persico.
Further investigation following the defendantsâ€™ convictions led to the recovery of Cutoloâ€™s body on October 6, 2008, from a field in Farmingdale, New York, where the defendantsâ€™ mafia underlings had buried Cutolo after shooting him.
â€œTodayâ€™s life sentences bring to a close the criminal careers of two of New Yorkâ€™s most powerful mafia figures, who chose to settle old scores through murder and then tried to cover up their deed by threatening the victimâ€™s family members, including his wife, children, and grandchildren,â€ stated United States Attorney Campbell. Mr. Campbell praised the work of the agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the agency that led the governmentâ€™s investigation.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he’s a staff writer for the New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he’s the former blog editor for the House Conservatives Fund’s weblog. Recently, the editors at Examiner.com appointed him as their Law Enforcement Examiner. Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty.
He’s former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed “Crack City” by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He’s also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He’s a news writer for NewswithViews.com and PHXnews.com. He’s also a columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he’s syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. He’s appeared as on-air commentator for over 300 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. If you wish to receive Kouri’s emailed law enforcement and intelligence reports, write to him at COPmagazine@aol.com. Simply write “Free Subscription” on the subject line.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he's a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he's a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News Radio affiliate KGAB (www.kgab.com). Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He's a news writer and columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he's syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. Kouri appears regularly as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Fox News Channel, Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, etc. To subscribe to Kouri's newsletter write to COPmagazine@aol.com and write "Subscription" on the subject line.