View Full Version : Is there still a mafia and mob?

06-04-1999, 09:20 AM
Is there still a mafia and mob in the USA? I don't hear much about either. The only exception I can think of is that guy in NYC that was thrown in jail for mafia crimes a few years ago, what's his name?

Not that I want to join, but I was just wondering.

06-04-1999, 04:58 PM
No, there is no "mafia" or "mob" in the United States. There is not now, and there never has been, understand? Just to make sure you DO understand, Vito will be sending one of his legitimate business associates over to, um, talk with you...

Dr. Fidelius, Charlatan
Associate Curator Anomalous Paleontology, Miskatonic University
"You cannot reason a man out of a position that he did not reach through reason."

06-04-1999, 05:08 PM
Absolutely there is still mob and mafia in the US. The city I used to live in had this family that owned a bunch of restaraunts and stores. They seemed legit, but later it turned out that all of these shops and restaraunts were fronts for other illegal activities (i.e. drugs and pornography). If that's not mafia, I don't know what is!

Alias Incognito

06-04-1999, 05:11 PM

06-04-1999, 05:41 PM
Is there a mafia in the US? Ah, no it's located elsewhere:

Ma•fia \"ma-fe-e, "ma-\
island Tanzania in Indian Ocean S of Zanzibar area 170 sq mi (442 sq km), pop 16,748

Oh, maybe not that one, okay, the other one? Yes, well, of course there is, however by definition, no there is not:

Ma•fia \"ma-fe-e, "ma-\ noun [Mafia, Maffia, a Sicilian secret criminal society, fr. It dial. (Sicily)] (1875)
1 a : a secret criminal society of Sicily or Italy
b : a similarly conceived criminal organization in the U.S.; also : a similar organization elsewhere <the Japanese Mafia>
c : a criminal organization associated with a particular traffic <the cocaine Mafia>
2 often not cap : a group of people likened to the Mafia; esp : a group of people of similar interests or backgrounds prominent in a particular field or enterprise : clique

06-06-1999, 01:27 PM
Okay, CH. Serious answer.

In the 20 years following the demise of J Edgar Hoover (who, for whatever reason, was disinclined to take on organized crime) the FBI systematically pursued and brought to justice much of what was known as the Mafia. This task was made all the easier with racketering (RICO) laws that made it easier to bring the big guys (who just gave the orders, but didn't necessarily participate in the evil deeds) to trial. The Mafia's code of silence (there's an Italian word for this phrase that I can't think of right now) was all but shattered when several "middle management" thugs turned state's evidence and ratted out their former bosses at the drop of a hat.

Any members of the Mafia we all knew and loved in the 50s, 60s, and 70s, have all either been brought to justice or have been forced into legitamate businesses, like Las Vegas casinos.

This isn't to say organized crime doesn't still exist, it just doesn't have a Sicilian accent anymore. Most organized crime today is based on the cocaine trade and is dominated by street gangs who, since the 80s, have created nationwide networks for the sale of drugs.

The Mafia does still exist in Sicily, but the Italian police and army are slowly whittling away at their ranks. Every now and then you still hear about how they assasinated a judge or politician who refused to be bought.

06-07-1999, 12:50 AM
Thanks for the humorous responses. Everyone's a comedian.

Can anyone give me real answers, or are you afraid of the mafia putting a hit on you?

06-07-1999, 02:19 AM
To add on to the serious answer:

There may not be much of a Sicilian/ Italian Mafia around but there are plenty of other counterparts out there taking their place.


The Yakuza. Japanese Mafia. Enforcement in Drug Traffiking, Prostitution, the whole nine yards. The difference here is that they have big time ties in certain big name companies and they are very public..Super Public in fact (They do interviews with the head honchos sometimes on TV) Also they believe in honor to the ninth power and there has not been something like the teardown of the Italian Mafia.

The Triads. Chinese Mafia. Actually they are the main counterparts to the Yaks and have a pretty firm grip on the opium traffiking of Asia (big time commodity there)
They actually are made up of Korean, Chinese, and other non Japanese.

Russian Mafia- Heavies of the defunct country in the big time weapons dealing. They have raided most of the armories and nuclear arsenal and are selling to the highest bidders. And that is anyone that can come up with the cash may possess nuclear bomb making capabilities.

There are several other lessers. Turkish Mafia, Jamacian Mafia, Columbian Cartel, etc. etc.
What is the truth is that since the big busts of the Italians and others, the Mafias have really made themselves a lot more shielded and their operations a lot more hush hush. They are out there but they are not going to be hugely busted anytime soon

06-07-1999, 10:26 AM

Umm... where exactly do you live? I can tell you for SURE that the Sicilian mafia is alive and well in the New York City area. You see, they WANT you to think that they're not around anymore or have all been brought to justice. That's why the Cosa Nostra has been so successful over its run in the US. They don't wear "colors" or flash gang signs. They're smarter than that. This is exactly why John Gotti wasn't liked by most of the mafia... he was in the news too much.

No one, for some unknown reason, wants to admit that they exist or are a real threat to anyone.

You want to go one on one with The Great One?

06-07-1999, 10:42 AM
Could be, Rock. I live on the West Coast and most of the Sicilians I've met were, well, in Sicily.

From the news, I gather that the Mafia in this country has pretty well shot its bolt. If the papers have it wrong (always a possibility) then the mob has been doing a real good job of maintaining a low profile.

06-07-1999, 10:48 AM
Well, in California, most of what you're getting are the ones who DID get caught.

By the way, 99.9% of the heroin in this country is brought in by the Sicilian Mafia. Judging by the raw amount of heroin in the country, I'd say the Mafia is alive and well.

You want to go one on one with The Great One?

06-08-1999, 02:08 PM
Thanks for the responses. I did a Yahoo! search of 'Mafia' and found several links:

http://members.home.com/fig1/ - Da Mob - Information on the Chicago Mob. From general history to bios of major mobsters to the St. Valentine's Day Massacre.
http://users.aol.com/whizkid01/index.html - Unofficial Homepage of the New York Mafia - source for info on organized crime happenings in New York.
http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/1424/mafia.htm - Mafia Page.
http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Lot/6713/ - That Life - devoted to all that is the Mafia.

I didn't check all of them. They sound like pages actually RUN by the mafia and mob, but I presume they are pages ABOUT the mafia and mob. I checked the first link and it had recent articles about mafia in the news. In May in NJ, several suspected mafia members were indicted. Also, two suspected mafia men were found dead under suspicous circumstances in NYC. Other than that, the only news items for this year were about John Gotti. His is the name I was trying to think of in my OP.

Here is a quote from http://members.home.com/fig1/mob/history.htm
"Although the actions of the FBI have had a serious effect on the organized crime families of the Mob and natural attrition has taken it's toll on the original gangster members, the Mob is still alive and kicking and still making a tidy living from the gambling rackets of Chicago."

So, it appears the mafia and mob are still alive in the USA, unfortunately, but less active than they once were. That reminds me, have you seen the Simpson's episodes with Big Tony and his gang?

06-08-1999, 02:22 PM
"That reminds me, have you seen the Simpson's episodes with Big Tony and his gang? "

Fat Tony: "Oh great, the kiss of death, that's ALL I needed."

"A friend will help you move house. A best friend will help you move a body."--Alexi Sayle

06-09-1999, 02:18 PM
A lawyer for the mob became mayor of Las Vegas today:

"Mob lawyer wins Las Vegas mayor’s race"

ASSOCIATED PRESS LAS VEGAS, June 9 - A lawyer who became famous by winning verdicts for the likes of Meyer Lansky and Tony "The Ant" Spilotro won one for himself when he was elected the next mayor of Sin City. Oscar Goodman, a flamboyant criminal defense attorney and self-described mob mouthpiece, came out of nowhere with a campaign that culminated in a landslide win Tuesday over a veteran city councilman.

From ‘Mr. Mafia to Mr. Mayor?

06-10-1999, 01:02 AM
I don't know what you're talking about. Mafia? La Cosa Nostra? Never heard of them.

Me? I'm just a retired olive oil importer. A legitimate business. Capiche?

Don Vito
"I'll reason with him"

06-12-1999, 10:31 AM
I don't know much about the mob, but I have strong suspicions based on what we here at UK call the "Sir Pizza mystery". Here's the gist:

1.) There are nine Sir Pizzas here in Lexington, and one in each of the surrounding communities, each of which is a medium-sized, sit-down establishment. (By contrast, there are about as many Pizza Huts, and not nearly that many Papa John's or Domino's.)

2.) I have lived here in Lex for five years, and in the area for all 23. I have asked many people from many different walks of life, as have many of my friends. None of us has ever talked to anyone who has eaten at Sir Pizza. Every time I drive by one, I look and don't see anyone inside.

Perhaps they should change their name to "Legitimate Business Front".

Dr. J

06-12-1999, 11:15 AM
I live near Youngstown, Ohio. The mob is still around, trust me.

Our country sheriff is going on trial for violating the RICO laws and a bunch of other stuff in a couple weeks. There have been a couple "hits" on elected officals--the one that comes to mind is our county prosecutor--and rumor ahs it that just about everyone in local government has been "approached" by them.

An offer you can't refuse, huh?

06-12-1999, 01:22 PM
Something is definitely going on in Chinatown, NY.

They sell insurance. It protects your store from "accidentally" getting burnt down. The stuff in "the Corruptor" isn't all that fake.

I'm ready to meet Him
'Cause where I'm livin' ain't right
Black hate white
White hate black
It's right back to the same fight...


06-13-1999, 12:16 AM
Thats the tongs. hey are huge in Frisco's Chinatown and down here in the China District of Orange County. Big thing down here seems to be transporting high end computer parts and car theft

06-29-1999, 01:12 PM
Point taken, BI. I obviously overstated my point about the mob being forced into jail or legitamacy, however, I still believe the trend is in that direction.

I had hoped this thread would stay buried, so no one could call me on it!

06-29-1999, 02:29 PM
I would venture to guess that the Mafia has been hurt more by the government and corporate America's incursions on its previous criminal territories than all the RICO prosecutions that have taken place to date. For instance, gambling, prostitution, pornography and drug smuggling were traditionally the mob's big money rackets. One could argue that drugs (and maybe prostitution) is all they have left.

Take gambling, f'rinstance. Used to be gambling was illegal, with casinos only in Vegas and Atlantic City, which were run by the mob. Now, Vegas is corporate run, there are casinos in virtually every state, and government run lotteries everywhere. Poor Guido -- who want to play the numbers or shoot craps when he can go to the 7-11 and buy a $130 million Powerball ticket, or drive 40 miles to a casino. The one possible exception is sports betting.

Prostitution/pornography. The porno industry is getting corporatized and soft core porn videos are rapidly become huge. I have a friend who expects to see Disney enter the porno market (under some well-disgused subsidiary) any day. And what about our old pal internet porn. I'm willing to bet the circulation of "Big 'uns" has dropped hugely since about 1996. Prostitution is legal in Nevada, and a couch dance at one of the ubiquitous strip clubs isn't far from the act.

Just a theory. Also, the big money guys in the mob may have figure out that their $$$ was better invested in the Dow than in the Down and Dirty.

President of the Vernon Dent fan club.

06-29-1999, 10:00 PM
In reference to the above, I'd imagine there's still money to be made in protection rackets and high interest loans to people down on their luck. Also, the mechanic where I work used to be a truck driver for one of the major US trucking firms. He was telling me before about a lot of trucks that 'disappeared' under bypasses and the like. Basically, you'd get so far and a truck cab would pull in front of you and slow down until you were forced to stop (keeping in mind that no trucker is going to play hero at this point and try to run the other guy off the road or something). A car comes along as well, you're invited to get in, they drive you around for a bit, return you to your cab sans trailer and leave. You're not hurt, but your shipment is gone to who knows where. A lot of companies put tracking devices into the trucks to see where they are at any point, but a lot of truckers disable the devices (I won't get into it for brevity's sake) so the company doesn't know when they stopped at a bar or something ("I dunno why the device didn't work.. must be broken") so it's not that much protection. Just thought I'd mention it since it reminds me of the old "selling a truck o' cigarettes" from Good Fellas.

"I guess it is possible for one person to make a difference, although most of the time they probably shouldn't."

06-29-1999, 10:17 PM

06-29-1999, 11:29 PM
I dunno if this is true or not, but I read somewhere that the old mafia numbers rackets were similar to some current state-run lotteries, the difference being that the mob gave you better odds!


06-30-1999, 12:14 AM
[[Any members of the Mafia we all knew and loved in the 50s, 60s, and 70s, have all either been brought to justice or have been forced into legitamate businesses, like Las Vegas casinos.]] Pappabear

The American version, of course, is called La Cosa Nostra, and Pappa, I hate to tell you, but the Italian crime families and gangs are still around doing crime, albeit not like they used to be, and with more competition. Prosecutions are ongoing, investigations continue, and some remain wanted. Did you think that when they finally convicted Gotti all his "associates" went out and got regular jobs?

06-30-1999, 06:42 AM
I dunno if this is true or not, but I read somewhere that the old mafia numbers rackets were similar to some current state-run lotteries, the difference being that the mob gave you better odds!

What is a numbers racket? What does it mean to "play the numbers?" I hear it all the time in gangster movies and the like.

"It is impossible to defeat an ignorant man in an argument" - William McAdoo

06-30-1999, 07:41 PM
[[So, it appears the mafia and mob are still alive in the USA, unfortunately, but less active than they once were. That reminds me, have you seen the Simpson's episodes with Big Tony and his gang?]]

That's "Fat Tony," and he's a legitimate businessman.

06-30-1999, 11:46 PM
Numbers was a lottery that worked a neighborhood. Its a racket because they have a list of numbers you pick from (say like 1-1000). Only problem is that it may be missing the winning number or that the odds work toward it having a small payout vs what the take is. Usually its the former so that no one wins.

07-02-1999, 08:50 AM
In Detroit, my friend's, brother's, cousin's, college roomate's, ex-wife's, neighbor's, co-worker tells me that the mob completely owns the produce business around here.

The power of accurate observation is frequently called cynicism by those who don't have it.
George Bernard Shaw