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March 14, 2022

New York State of Mind - Raymond Patriarca


New England mafia boss Raymond Patriarca returns as he attempts to play power games with the New York mafia families, and closer to home in Massachusetts. Spoiler: it ends badly!

Episode 21

Episode 22

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Lara & Nina

Transcript

Lara:

 

Hi everyone! Today, Nina and I are going to be discussing Raymond Patriarca’s relationships with the New York Families. Some of these events were of his own creation and others he inserted himself into. This episode will be shorter than our recent ones. We figure our listeners need a rest from the both of us!



Nina:

 

Actually I think you needed a break from writing!




Lara:

 

Not exactly! My work schedule this week didn’t leave me with much free time.



Nina:

 

Is this where we ask for donations, so you don’t have to work so many hours?



Lara:

 

Hey, we received our first donation last week! Thank you! 

 

So yes, if any of our listeners want to help us cover expenses and upgrade our equipment you can do so on our website. I’ll put the link in the show notes. 

 

Back to business! Next week we’ll be the first of two episodes dedicated to Teddy Deegan, his murder, the men responsible for his death and the men wrongfully convicted. In our research for those episodes, we realized that Raymond’s role as the boss of New England, wasn’t limited to giving permission to the assortment of men flowing through his office seeking approval for the hits and crimes they wanted to commit. He was also actively involved in other dealings outside of his territory, often involving himself in the affairs of the five families in New York.



Nina:

 

Raymond’s relationship with the Bonanno family in NYC may or may not have played a role in Raymond’s passive approach to Jimmy Flemmi and Joe Barboza’s desire to kill Teddy Deegan. We’ll discuss Teddy’s connection to the Bonanno family in next week’s episode. Roughly five months before Teddy’s murder, Raymond was heard on the wiretap describing Joseph Bonanno as “power crazy.” In October of 1964, Raymond instructed Henry Tameleo to travel to Boston to meet with Joseph Lombardo and Joe Anselmo to instruct them that no one in their organization was to have anything to do with Bonanno or anyone in Bonanno’s Family. Bonanno was an outcast according to the Commission which Raymond was a member of. When Tameleo asked Raymond where Bonanno was, Raymond said, “he went to the old country.”



Lara:

 

Sam Cufari was instructed to pass the same message on to the crew in the Worcester area. Raymond wanted Johnny Foto also to get the message about Bonanno in case they crossed paths in Arizona. Raymond speculated that Bonanno and Joseph Profaci were plotting something against the Commission. And of course Raymond told Jerry Angiulo to also instruct everyone not to do business with any of the Bonanno family members. Even Joe Modica had to report to Raymond to get the message about the Bonanno situation. It must have taken a week to tell everyone!




Nina:

 

But Raymond also inserted himself into the affairs of the Genovese, Colombo, Profaci and Gambino families. Let’s start with a topic that we touched on in episode 21, the assassination of Albert Anastasia. This is one instance, I believe, where Raymond inserted himself most likely after the fact as the conversations about Anastasia’s murder were picked up on the wiretap at the Coin-O-Matic over 5 years after the hit took place. But the wire never actually recorded Raymond saying he lent out Jackie Nazarian, but rather only that the “New York Families” approached him for a hitter. Raymond claimed that the Genovese family contacted him to assist in the assassination of Anastasia and he sent Nazarian to accompany Crazy Joe Gallo. Congressional reports and House hearings ran with that snippet. Including that when New York needed a hitter they went to RI. Like Lara mentioned in a previous episode, we believe that Carlo Gambino orchestrated Anastasia’s death in order to take over the Anastasia Family which would go on to become the Gambino Family. 



Lara:

 

When Joseph Barboza testified in 1972 during the Organized Crime in Sports Hearings, he testified that Jackie killed Anastatsia at the behest of Raymond and was responsible for 26 murders. Barboza also testified that Frank Costello directed Raymond to kill Walther Reuther in 1938, but he shot the refrigerator instead. 



Nina:

 

But Raymond was in the can in 1938! And as we mentioned before, that incident didn’t even happen in 1938.



Lara:

 

Do I need to say Barboza was a liar?!

 

The theory that it was Raymond’s relationship with Costello that caused the Genovese family to reach out to him doesn’t make sense considering Vito Genovese had Vinny “The Chin” Gigante try to whack Frank Costello outside of Costello’s apartment building earlier that year in May. The bad blood between Costello and Genovese went back to the 1940s when Lucky Luciano was the head of the Luciano family. Costello took over the family after Lucky was deported to Italy after WWII. Genovese wanted control, and he saw his opportunity in 1956 after Joe Adonis was also deported.



Nina:

 

So the idea that Genovese would trust Raymond, a long time ally of Costello seems a bit of a stretch. The theory that Genovese needed to take out Albert Anastasia in order to take control of the Luciano family and make it his own really doesn’t make sense. As I mentioned, Carlo Gambino was the one who had something to gain from taking out Anastasia as Gambino was Anastasia’s underboss. Whether or not Genovese was behind the Anastasia hit, he found himself in Federal Prison in 1959 after being sentenced to 15 years for heroin trafficking. The rumor was that Luciano had him setup for his duplicity. Genovese was sent to the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary where most organized crime figures served their time, and where Raymond would spend time the following decade. 



Lara:

 

Let’s get back to the Bonanno drama. Later in October of 1964, an associate of Carlo Gambino sent word to Raymond that Gambino wanted to see him, but Raymond was busy.



Nina:

 

Busy with what, gossiping?




Lara:

 

Hey, all that chattering must have been exhausting!

 

Nicky Bianco reported to Raymond that he had met with Carlo Gambino’s brother Joe who informed him that the Bonanno crew was distancing themselves from the Gambino crew. Bianco went on to tell Raymond about which members of Bonanno’s crew were staying loyal and who was jumping ship. The number of defectors topped 150 at that time. Bianco added that Joe Profaci had about 120 men allied with him. Raymond explained to Nicky that Bonanno only had the old timers on his side because of Bonanno’s father.



Nina:

 

Nicky Bianco had become a mademan in 1963, and was a reputed soldier in the Colombo Family. How this was even possible is still a mystery to us. The Commission closed the books in late 1957, and they weren’t opened again until 1976. 

 

Raymond told Henry Tameleo that he was going to NYC on Monday September 23rd, 1963 to make Nick a member of the family on the 25th at the Roma. Patriarca instructed Tameleo to go to Boston to tell Jerry Angiulo what was happening, and that the Commission had ok’d the making of “this kid” Nick. Supposedly, Raymond obtained permission from Tony, presumably Salerno, to make Nicky a member.  Raymond claimed that if it weren’t an emergency the Commission wouldn’t recognize Nicky as a member. The induction ceremony took place at 4pm on September 25th, 1963.



Lara:

 

Do you actually buy that story? Supposedly, Raymond straightened out Nicky to broker some peace deal with the Gallo-Profaci Family by making Nicky the temporary head of the Magliocca Family. On February 16, 1964, Nicky contacted Raymond and said that he would be inclined to back Joe Colombo as boss of the Magliocca family. 



Nina:

 

I can’t see the Commission making this one exception just for Raymond. Raymond supposedly refused to make guys who weren’t 100% Italian. But Denny Raimondi would later claim that he was made by Raymond also, and Denny was Polish. Raymond was later caught on the wiretap saying that because of the prohibition on inducting new members, he was using Irish and Poles to do his dirty work referring to them as suckers, so I just don’t buy the emergency induction ceremony story.  But it is poetic justice that half-Irish Frankie Salemme would go on to be the boss of the Patriarca Family.



Lara:

 

Oh Raymond must have been rolling over in his grave. 

 

And speaking of Denny Raimondi, his stepfather was also a frequent visitor of the Coin-O-Matic.

 

Anthony Raimondi wanted to know what was happening with Bonanno. Raymond explained that he was called to New York three weeks prior during which time the fate of Bonanno was discussed. The Commission decided that Bonanno was no longer a Boss or Commission Member. They also put out the word that no one  was to have any business dealings or association with any members of the Bonanno Family. Patriarca believed that Bonanno was still alive and hadn't been killed by the opposing faction in the Bonanno Family. Raymond pointed out to Raimondi that if the opposing faction wanted Bonanno dead they would’ve done so when they grabbed him on Park Avenue. Kidnapping Bonanno and killing him later made no sense to Raymond, so he was of the opinion that Bonanno was still alive, and that Bonanno engineered his own alleged kidnapping. 



Nina:

 

Raymond told Raimondi that he spoke to the Commission members in New York on behalf of Raimondi and told them that because his son, Denny, was with him, meaning Raymond, no one was to touch either of them. Raimondi, a Bonanno member himself, told Raymond that Gus Marino was thrown out, apparently by the Bonanno group. Patriarca, the eternal blabbermouth told Raimondi  that when Bonanno didn’t appear before the Commission when requested on eight or nine different occasions he was given one additional chance. Instead of Bonanno himself appearing he sent his son, Bill, but the Commission told Bill that they did not want to talk to him, but rather his father. Raymond continued to say that about half of the Bonanno crew had turned themselves in to the Commission, and that even Bonanno’s brother-in-law had voted him out. In Raymond’s opinion, Bonanno was the cause of his own downfall because of his own greed.

 

And then Raimondi asked Raymond to make sure that Denny called his mother and send her some money!




Lara:

 

Denny’s mother’s finances weren’t the only thing on Raymond’s mind, he also wanted to kill Joe Valachi!

 

Raymond recruited two men from Chicago and two from Detroit to take out Valachi. The man from New Jersey that he contacted to organize the hit was an informant. Obviously the hit never happened, but it did spark the interest of the Feds who interviewed another inmate where Valachi was being held. Louis H. Perrini reported to the FBI that the Mafia was making men in the New Jersey State Prison back in 1956 and identified the participants in the ceremony. 



Nina:

 

You know I think the informant was Butchy Miceli, a member of the New Jersey faction of the Gambino family. We’ll get more into Butchy in later episodes, but Raymond really couldn’t help creating drama. At least there was one person who refused to get wrapped up with Raymond, Meyer Lansky. When Lansky was staying in Boston that Fall, he refused to make a trip to RI to visit his daughter who was studying there as he didn’t want to be associated with Raymond. Lansky knew he had surveillance on him and didn’t want the added heat.




Lara:

 

Do you blame him?

 

Not one to be left out of the drama, the following month, Henry Tameleo was picked up by the feds and questioned about singer Buddy Greco’s hotel room in Boston getting robbed. Greco had been performing at Blinstrub’s Village. Some of our local listeners might remember it as Blinstrub’s Old Colony Inn. Tameleo denied any knowledge of the robbery to the Feds. But he later explained to Raymond that it was Ronnie Cassesso’s score.

 

Ronnie and an accomplice had forced open 20 pieces of luggage and scattered clothes and other items around the Grecos’ room at the Fenway Motor Hotel on Commonwealth Ave. They’d managed to escape with $20,000 worth of furs and jewelry, including two mink coats, a mink hat and a jewelry case with diamonds and pearls from Mrs Greco and Buddy Greco’s watch from Jerry Lewis and ring from Frank Sinatra.

 

Tameleo informed Raymond that Ronnie eventually sold the stuff back to Buddy Greco.

 

Tameleo also told Raymond that the Feds questioned him about the disappearance of Joseph Bonanno, and Tameleo told the Feds that he didn’t know Bonanno. Raymond told Tameleo that he had learned that Bonanno had disappeared of his own free will. 

 

According to SA Kehoe, Tameleo was told that the Feds needed an updated photograph of him and that’s why he had been picked up. Then they used that as an excuse to ask him about Ronnie Cassessa and Bonanno.





Nina:

 

In November, the Bonanno saga was still the topic of conversation. Raymond informed Jerry Angiulo that Joe Bonanno “took it on the lam himself.” He also told Jerry that Bonanno had put on a great act in front of the lawyers referring to Bonanno’s fake kidnapping, and that Bonanno’s attorneys had no idea the kidnapping was staged. Sammy Granito also wanted to know the latest info on Bonanno’s whereabouts. As an added bonus, Raymond called Joe Modica “the Italian con man” (31.28)



Lara:

 

As the Bonanno drama was dying down in early 1965, Raymond headed for New York City.

True to form, Raymond made a production of his journey. Little did he know that no matter how many trains and taxis he changed during his trip, the Feds knew exactly where he was going thanks to their wiretap at the Coin-O-Matic. Raymond announced on the wiretap that he would be going to stay at the Park Sheraton as he usually did.The special agents of the Boston Field Office would track him to New York where the agents of the New York office would take up the surveillance of Raymond.

 

On January 20th, Raymond had lunch with Sam Ginacana of Chicago and Salvatore Celembrino of the Genovese family. But rather than just stroll over to D'Angelo's, Raymond went on a covert mission. He took the New Haven Railroad train and arrived at Grand Central Station, where he took a taxi to the Park Sheraton and entered on the 56th St side. After staying inside for a few minutes he exited through the 55th St exit and took a 4 minute stroll to the restaurant. A lot of good that did.



Nina:

 

What cracks me up is Raymond later relayed his genius plan to Jerry upon his return to Federal Hill. Giving endless details about how he eluded the authorities. Raymond told Jerry the same story about how he entered through one side of the Park Sheraton Hotel, but added that he hid  in the men’s room for a few minutes, then went out another exit, only to return through the first exit and stop in the bar. After feeling sure he wasn’t being followed, Raymond would walk to the Edison Hotel and repeat the same ritual! Finally, Raymond would head to his scheduled meeting. Jerry and Raymond both concluded that if there was a leak or if someone was being followed it had to be the New Yorkers! 







Lara:

 

Raymond was supposed to return to New York for a meeting in March, but he refused because he was fearful of receiving a subpoena while in NY to appear before a Federal Grand Jury there. 

 

On April 6, 1965 during a conference between NY FBI Field Office SAC William M. Alexander and the US Attorney of the Southern District of NY, Alexander pointed out to the US Attorney that on several occasions in 1964 and 1965 meetings were held at D’Angelos Restaurant and Patsy’s Restaurant, both in New York City, between Raymond Patriarca, Thomas Luchese and other individuals. The US Attorney felt that since these meetings could be substantiated to some degree by Agent testimony and photographs, this would provide an excellent avenue for the issuance of subpoenas for Luchese, Patriarca, Steve Magaddino and Carlo Gambino. 





Nina:

 

While the authorities in New York were trying to build a case against the mob, Raymond was busy trying to make more men in his crew. Sam Cufari, Nicky Camerota and Jimmy Collaro wanted to make Pinky Panarelli. Raymond described how he made Frankie “Skyball” Scibelli and “turned him over” to New York. Jerry Angiulo recalled how he remembered some of the guys being made at the Monte Christo in Worcester, but at the time he had no idea what was actually happening. 

 

So Jerry wasn’t even made either! This is beyond a farce now. They were larping



Lara:

 

Well, he must have been made at some point in time, but when, who knows?



Nina: 

 

Not one to miss out on an opportunity to gossip Jerry told Raymond that Pinky was at the Indian 

Meadow Golf Course recently and wasn’t getting along with some of the other guys including Sam Cufari who became enraged. Raymond regaled Jerry with a story from the 1920s about a heist that didn’t involve any of the men in the argument, but somehow believed that was the cause of the beef 40 years later. I just wish there was a good Raymondism in that story!




Lara:

 

There’ll be more of those to come.

 

Raymond was also busy “transferring” mademen from New York to Boston. One of these men was John Biele aka Johnny Foto, a capodecina from the Genovese Family. Jerry Angiulo was concerned about whether or not he needed to contact New York about the transfer of Johnny, but Raymond assured Jerry that he had the power to make the transfer without contacting New York. Johnny Foto didn’t have a happy ending though in his new home. He was shot to death on March 17, 1967 while in Miami Beach, Fl. No one was ever charged for his killing.



Nina:

 

Back to New York for a minute. Not only was the Coin-O-Matic and Jay’s Lounge in Boston wired up, Patsy’s Restaurant in New York City was under surveillance. Raymond, Tommy Luchese and Thomas Eboli were observed meeting there in June of 1964. But Raymond wasn’t just lending his assistance, if you could call it that, to New York, he occasionally needed their help. A perfect example of that was his problem with Willie Marfeo and his dice game. We briefly touched on Willie Marfeo’s murder in epsiode 22. No one was ever convicted of Willie’s murder although Rudy Sciarra was brought to trial and acquitted. Lara and I both believe we know who killed Willie and why his identity was kept a secret all of these years.



Lara:

 

Thanks to Nina’s diligence, we both believe that Gregory “the Grim Reaper” Scarpa was the hitter. Scarpa was a made member of the Profaci family which would later become the Colombo family. He officially became an informant on November 21, 1961. In an FBI 302 dated July 29, 1965 informant number NY-3461-C-TE, Gregory Scarpa reported that he was contacted, presumably by Nicky Bianco, to go to Providence at Raymond’s request. Scarpa had reported a conversation to the Feds in August of 1964 that he had with Joe Colombo. Scarpa told Colombo that Nicky Bianco sent his regards. Colombo was quick to tell Scarpa that Nicky was not a member of the Colombo family but rather under Raymond’s protection. No mention was made of whether Nicky was actually a mademan. 



Nina:

 

Scarpa told his FBI handler that he knew Raymond personally and was familiar with how Raymond operated. The odd request was that Scarpa demanded that his handler accompany him on his trip to Providence where he would likely spend a week. He wanted to be ensured that his handler was nearby at all times. Upon his arrival in Providence, Scarpa was to meet with Butsey Morrelli. But before leaving New York two of Raymond’s associates whose names were redacted went to New York to meet Scarpa. One of the RI men told Scarpa that he was concerned that there was an informant in Raymond’s crew as law enforcement knew their every move. At this point the wiretap had been in place over a year, but as we mentioned before Raymond was convinced there was an informant in his midst. He had no idea he was essentially informing on himself. It would be another year until Willie was killed on July 13, 1966. 



Lara:

 

Scarpa’s story and how the events unfolded definitely makes me believe that Scarpa was Willie Marfeo’s killer. It also explains why any discussion of the hit is missing from the wiretap at the Coin-O-Matic. The Boston Field Office was made aware of Scarpa’s Rhode Island adventures in 1964, and of course they would have protected his identity. There are nearly a thousand pages of 302s pertaining to Scarpa on the FBI Vault website. We’re going to have to sift through at least the ones from the 60s to see what other bits of information might be in them. As for Raymond’s adventures in New York, there’s more to come this season that will be woven into several episodes. 



Nina:

 

Next week we hope you join us for the first episode about Teddy Deegan and his murder. We’ll be looking at Teddy’s early days, crimes and murder. Thank you all for listening.

 

Lara and Nina:

 

BYE!!