Author Visit: Organized Crime in Chicago, Beyond the Mafia


Dr. Robert M. Lombardo discusses his latest crime book about Chicago in the large meeting room at the Niles Public Library on Wed., May 8, at 7pm.

Recently published by the University of Illinois Press, Dr. Lombardo’s Organized Crime in Chicago questions the prevailing view that organized crime can be traced directly to the Sicilian Mafia and explains its development as linked to political machines.

A thirty-five year police veteran and sociologist, Dr. Lombardo is a professor of criminology and criminal justice and a member of the Graduate Faculty at Loyola University in Chicago. He served thirty years with the Chicago Police Department and five years as the Deputy Chief of the Cook County Sheriff’s Police Department.

Registration for this Chicago Authors program is recommended by calling the Niles Public Library at 847-663-1234 or online at nileslibrary.org/calendar.

Source: chicagotribune.com

Joaquín 'El Chapo' Guzmán

Report: Mexican military blocked U.S. capture of Sinaloa Cartel leader

According to Mexican journalist Jesus Esquivel, the U.S. government offered to capture Sinaloa Cartel leader, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman in a “simple, fast and surgical” operation.

“The U.S. intelligence services have located him, they know where he is and are ready to trap him,” Esquivel said.

However, the Mexican military blocked the effort.

EFE reported:

President Felipe Calderon, who governed Mexico from 2006 to 2012, wanted the United States to capture the top boss of the Sinaloa drug cartel, but the Mexican army and navy “were opposed and stopped the operation” because only U.S. personnel would take part, Esquivel said.

Esquivel interviewed Drug Enforcement Administration agent Jose Baeza, who told him the DEA provided the Mexican government on two occasions with all the information it needed to capture Guzman, but the drug lord got away both times in four-wheel drive vehicles in the mountains.

The Mexican government knows where Guzman is hiding because it has received intelligence reports from the DEA and other agencies, as well as information from its own military and civilian intelligence services, and officials have a list of the drug lord’s properties, Esquivel said.

The Pentagon prepared a plan to capture Guzman in an operation similar to the one that ended with the death of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, Esquivel said.

“Washington has not discarded the plan” and will propose it to Enrique Peña Nieto, who became Mexico’s president on Dec. 1, the journalist said.

“The capture of this drug trafficker, if the Mexicans allow it, would be as easy as taking candy from a baby,” Esquivel said.

The United States considers this mission a “priority” because Guzman is the leader of the world’s most powerful criminal organization, Esquivel said, citing a U.S. Treasury Department analysis.

In 2011, Guzman was named to Forbes’ Magazine’s Most Powerful People in the World list.

The billionaire criminal ranked 55th on that year’s list of the world’s most powerful people.

Among others, the drug lord beat out for the distinction were Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and House Majority Leader John Boehner.

Then-Mexican President Felipe Calderón failed to make the list.

In 1993, Guzman (aka Shorty) was arrested on murder and drug charges, but escaped from a Mexican federal prison in 2001, and has remained at-large ever since. He is believed to be directing the powerful Sinaloa Cartel from the mountains of Mexico’s Pacific coast, surrounded by a virtual army of bodyguards.

The U.S. government currently has a $5 million bounty on Guzman, alleging that the Sinaloa organization is responsible for bringing most of the cocaine into this country from Mexico and Colombia.

In February, the Chicago Crime Commission named Guzman, as the city’s latest ‘Public Enemy No. 1.’

So, how does a Mexican crime boss earn such a title in a city more than 1,200 miles from the Mexican border?

By turning that city into a distribution hub for narcotics.

Jack Riley, the head of the DEA’s Chicago office, recently told the Associated Press: “This is where Guzman turns his drugs into money.”



Reputed gangster charged with hit at Vancouver hotel

A reputed Canadian mobster already charged with murder in Toronto was charged Wednesday with gunning down a rival at a Vancouver hotel.

Rabih “Robby” Alkhalil, 25, is fighting extradition from Greece, where he was arrested in February, The Vancouver Sun reported. Police in British Columbia said he is not likely to be returned there for trial for a considerable time, given that the Toronto charges have priority.

Sandip “Dip” Duhre was shot in front of a panicked crowd in January 2012 in the lobby of the Sheraton Wall Center in Vancouver.

Vancouver Police Superintendent Ralph Porteous said investigators used the same techniques to examine surveillance footage from the hotel lobby that they used after riots.

“There was thousands of hours of video that had to be processed,” Porteous said at a news conference Wednesday.

Porteous described the shooting as a “contract killing” that came from Alkhalil’s association with a coalition of motorcycle gangs, including the Hells Angels and Red Scorpions. He said Alkhalil left the country after the home he shared in Montreal with a Hells Angels leader was searched.

Alkhalil is charged in Toronto with killing Johnnie Raposo last year. He also faces drug charges in Montreal.


Dozens arrested in mafia-linked drugs trafficking bust in Italy

Catanzaro, 13 Feb. – Italy’s tax police said Wednesday they had broken up a drugs trafficking gang based in southern Calabria region and the north and arrested 43 people with suspected mafia links. A total 250 kiilos of hasish and 60 kilos of cocaine was seized in the operation.

The arrests were carried out in Calabria and in the northern business capital Milan – a Calabrian mafia stronghold – in other unspecified Italian provinces and in Spain, according to police.

The suspects are accused of international drugs trafficking between Spain and Colombia. They include alleged members of several of the Calabrian mafia or ‘Ndrangheta’s clans southern and northern Italy, police said.
Officers from Milan and from the tax police’s organised crime branch in the Italian capital, Rome, were involved in the operation.

Source: AKI


Shot Bulgarian Mobster Still in Critical Condition

The health condition of top Bulgarian mobster Baretata, who was shot Tuesday, is expected to deteriorate further, doctors now say.

Crime boss, Zlatomir Ivanov aka Baretata (The Beret, The Barret) was shot in broad daylight in the vicinity of the main courtroom building in the Bulgarian capital as he was going there for an appeals hearing in an illegal drugs distribution case against him.

After the shooting, Ivanov was taken to the emergency Pirogov hospital and underwent surgery for approximately four hours on Tuesday and his life was reported to still be in danger.

Doctor Stoyan Sopotnenski said Wednesday the patient’s condition is expected to become more complicated and additional surgeries will be needed to stabilize him.

Baretata is in the central life-support ward on respiratory apparatus and on cardiac medications.

“His condition is dynamic and we cannot say how it will develop and cannot issue certain forecasts about his life,” the Doctor is quoted saying.

A bodyguard, who returned fire, was also shot in the leg. He is in stable condition.


Mafia boss may be buried in Corleone mayor’s tomb

Palermo, – Sicilian prosecutors are exploring the possibility that remains found in the tomb of a former Corleone mayor could in fact belong to a local mafia boss, it emerged on Tuesday.

Investigations began after the town council reported that a skull found in the tomb of ex-mayor Bernardino Verro may be that of Calogero Bagarella, a close associate of former Cosa Nostra chiefs Toto’ Riina and Bernardo Provenzano, who is believed to have been shot dead during the so-called Viale Lazio attack on Palermo Mafia boss Michele Cavataio in December 1969.

Tests are now being carried out on the remains to establish if they can be dated to around the same period as the massacre. Verro, the first socialist mayor of Corleone and a symbol of the peasant struggle against the Mafia, died and was buried in Corleone in 1915 but his remains were moved to the family tomb in Palermo many years ago. It was the late mafioso-turned-informant Antonino Calderone who first suggested that Bagarella might be buried in his original tomb.


6 die in Zacatecas including 3 armed suspects

A total of six individuals have been killed or were found dead in ongoing drug and gang violence in Zacatecas state, including three armed suspects who died in an encounter with a Mexican Army unit, according to Mexican news accounts.

According to a news item posted on the website of El Sol de Zacatecas news daily, a unit with the Mexican 97th Infantry Battalion exchanged gunfire with armed suspects who were travelling aboard two vehicles Saturday morning.

The gun battle took place in a location about 20 kilometers west of Fresnillo municipality where the army unit was on patrol. The unit apparently crossed paths with the small convoy and were fired on as armed suspects attempted to flee. Mexican Army return fire killed three.

One unidentified Mexican Army soldier was wounded in the encounter.

An undisclosed number of armed suspects surrendered to the unit, and the two vehicles were seized.

Three other individuals were killed in Zacatecas state, according to news items posted on the website of El Sol de Zacatecas.

  • Two woman were found dead on a road in Zacatecas municipality Wednesday. They were identified as Gloria Guadalupe Gomez Ruiz, 25, Zacatecas and Laura Ivone Rodriguez Cervantes, 22 , of Guadalupe municipality. Both victims were found naked and had been tortured by a beating. They were strangled in the location they were found. Zacatecas Procuraduria General de Justicia or attorney general, Arturo Nahle Garcia later dismissed speculations that the women were part of a wave of femicides in the state, suggesting that the victims died from local criminal gangs.
  • An unidentified man was found beaten to death between Jerez and Fresnillo municipalities Saturday afternoon. The victim was found near the village of Purisima del Maguey with a message from organized crime. The content of the message was not disclosed in the news item. However, reports did say the victim was caught in an intergang struggle in the area.


By Chris Covert

Each Family has it's own rules

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