An alleged member of the Mafia's Colombo crime family and three men in the "crew" he headed were indicted today on federal racketeering charges in Boston.Ralph F. DeLeo of Somerville, allegedly a "made member" of New York's Colombo family, led the DeLeo Crew, prosecutors alleged in the indictment handed up today in US District Court in Boston.
"What we're seeing here is the Colombo family has grabbed a foothold in this area," Warren Bamford, the special agent in charge of the Boston FBI office, said at a news conference at the US Attorney's office.
The members and associates of the crew allegedly engaged in drug trafficking, extortion, and loansharking, in Massachusetts, Arkansas, Rhode Island, New York and Florida, according to the indictment.
Also named in the indictment were Franklin Goldman of Randolph; Edmond Kulesza of Somerville; and George Wylie Thompson of Cabot, Ark.
The FBI's Bamford didn't offer any details on why the Colombo family might be moving into Massachusetts.
US Attorney Carmen Ortiz said law enforcement efforts have weakened the New England Mafia. But she added, "You just can't come to the conclusion or the assumption that they are no longer in business."
Eastern District of Arkansas Assistant US Attorney Laura Hoey said the investigation began as a probe into illegal gambling in Arkansas and investigators found that the organization's tentacles extended to Massachusetts.
Ortiz said the indictment sent a message: "If you're going to come into
If convicted on the racketeering conspiracy charge, the men each face up to 20 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and a $500,000 fine.
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