Thursday’s big news was a seriously big bust involving The Latin Kings street gang, along the East Coast.
Charges include Federal Racketeering and various drug and firearms offenses.
Lots of top leaders were arrested, but this may only be the tip of the proverbial iceberg.
The Latin Kings have known ties to the Italian Mob (La Cosa Notra) in America.
BOSTON (AP/WHDH) — Federal authorities announced racketeering, drug and firearms charges on Thursday against more than 60 members of the Latin Kings, including the leaders of the street gang’s East Coast operations, following “Operation Throne Down,” which was the largest takedown in FBI Boston history.
Among those arrested is Michael Cecchetelli, a 40-year-old Springfield, Massachusetts resident with ties to the Genovese crime family who oversaw the gang’s operations from Massachusetts down to Florida, according to Joseph Bonavolonta, head of the FBI’s Boston office.
Authorities said Cecchetelli and other gang leaders ran the gang with a Mafia-style hierarchy, with a council of leaders and as many as 11 chapters across Massachusetts alone. They say the leadership approach has become a model for other Latin Kings regions in the country.
The Latin Kings have also grown to become the largest gang in Massachusetts prisons, with an estimated 400 members, including leaders who face charges for continuing to coordinate criminal activity outside the prison, authorities said.
“It’s a big hit precisely because we are able to take out all of the leadership,” said U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling of the five-year investigation by the FBI and the State Department. “It will be extremely difficult for the gang to regroup in the region.”
A lawyer who represented Cecchetelli in a prior federal case didn’t respond to an email seeking comment.
The majority of Thursday morning’s arrests took place across Massachusetts, but some gang members and associates were also arrested in Rhode Island and Connecticut, Bonavolonta said. The gang’s operations also stretched into New York, New Jersey, and Maryland.
WCVB reports that The Latin Kings have ties to Italian Mobsters.
Who is La Cosa Nostra?
In short it is an extension of Italian mafia in AMERICA.
The Sicilian Mafia, referred to by its own members as Cosa Nostra (“our thing”), is an organized crime syndicate in Sicily, Italy. It is a loose association of criminal groups that share a common organisational structure and code of conduct. The basic group is known as a “family”, “clan”, or cosca. Each family claims sovereignty over a territory, usually a town or village or a neighbourhood (borgata) of a larger city, in which it operates its rackets. Its members call themselves “men of honour“, although the public often refers to them as mafiosi. The Mafia’s core activities are protection racketeering, the arbitration of disputes between criminals, and the organizing and oversight of illegal agreements and transactions.
Here’s another video that goes into greater detail.
This is a huge bust that could grow legs and take down some really, really big fish.
Time will tell.