A mob snitch who helped bring down several made members of New York’s Bonnano crime family is still alive and well. In fact, he’s currently living in Miami, where he just opened a new night club called the FDR Lounge.
How do we know this (and how is this guy not buried under the Meadowlands right now)? Well, mafia rat Chris Paciello is featured in this week’s Miami New Times, one of the Voice’s sister papers.
Paciello’s FBI handlers credit him with bringing down mobsters even Joe Pistone (AKA Donnie Brasco) couldn’t get close to — all while partying with the likes of Madonna, Jennifer Lopez, and Sofia Vergara at various night clubs he owned in Miami.
Paciello wasn’t just some low-level snitch, either — his handlers credit him with fingering “two made members of the Bonanno family, which led ultimately to the
takedown of almost the entire upper echelon of the organization,
including family boss Joseph “Big Joe” Massino.”
From the Miami New Times:
Paciello’s cooperation with the federal government was “unprecedented,” according to a March 2004 letter by his then-lawyer, Ben Brafman,
to the court. Brafman estimated that “more than 70 people” had been
“prosecuted directly and indirectly as a result of [his] cooperation.”
This was largely confirmed in a subsequent letter sent by the U.S. District Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn.
If you’re into mob stuff, it’s a pretty good read — with a lot of local NYC flavor.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on March 22, 2012