Modern mobsters ‘soft’ compared to old guard like Al Capone, mafia bosses say
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Modern mobsters are turning ‘soft’ according to veteran New York mafia bosses, as we revealed yesterday.
They worry that millennial gangsters prefer sending text threats to using fists, firearms, and face-to-face confrontations., with one crime family member moaning: “Everything is on the phones with them.”
It’s a far cry from some of history’s most brutal gangland villains as James Moore reveals…
SHARP EXIT: Henchman for Boston’s Patriarca mafia family in the 1960s, Joe Barboza was nicknamed The Animal. He once chewed off a man’s cheek, gnawed on a piece of skull from another victim and stabbed people who didn’t pay up “in the face.” He was himself gunned down in 1976.
PIZZA WORD: Working for New York’s Gambino family, ex-butcher Roy DeMeo was behind 200 murders in the 1970s using his ‘Gemini method’ to shoot, stab and chop up victims – often while eating pizza. One unlucky lad was the son-in-law of Gambino boss Paul Castellano, who was dumped in the ocean on the mob chief’s orders. Castellano later had DeMeo shot dead too.
LOW BLOW: Al Capone may have had seven of Bugs Moran’s gang gunned down in Chicago in 1929’s St Valentine’s Day Massacre, but his rival was even more twisted. He kidnapped a Capone bodyguard, hung him by his testicles using piano wire, then burned his eyes out with cigarettes.
MURDER INC: In the 1930s and 1940s this notorious mafia enforcement outfit undertook 1,000 contract killings. Among their ranks were Harry Strauss, who hacked a man to death in a cinema with an axe and Abe Reles, who plunged an ice pick into victims’ brains through their ear.
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COLD-BLOODED: US hitman Richard Kuklinski committed 200 murders, once feeding a victim a cyanide-laced hamburger. He was dubbed The Iceman for his cunning habit of freezing victims’ corpses to confuse police about their time of death. Later convicted, he died behind bars in 2006.
LAST ORDERS: With his brother Reggie, Ronnie Kray ran a ‘hands on’ criminal empire in 1960s London. In 1966 he coolly shot George Cornell in the forehead while the rival gangster sat at the bar of the city’s Blind Beggar boozer. Kray ended up serving life behind bars.
TOOTH HURTS: ‘Mad’ Frankie Fraser was an enforcer for London’s Richardson gang and was nicknamed ‘The Dentist’ as he would reportedly torture people by pulling their teeth out with pliers. He died in 2014 aged 90.
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NOSTRA COSY: In 1992 Italian hitman Giovanni Brusca blew up anti-mafia Sicilian magistrate Giovanni Falcone and four others in a career that saw him butcher scores of people and even torture and kill children. He was released from prison in 2021 after serving 25 years.
LUGS BAD: Tattooed Carlos Tiberio Ramirez, a cruel leader of the El Salvador M-13 gang, is said to have once bitten a man’s ears off, before having him boiled alive in acid.
BUM RAP: There have been plenty of ruthless drug lords in Latin America, but few surpass Mexican cocaine kingpin Heriberto Lazcano. The Los Zetas boss fed victims to lions and tigers at his ranch and even ate flesh from their buttocks! He died in a shoot-out in 2012.
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