Home New York Press Releases 2010 Acting Boss of Genovese Crime Family Pleads Guilty in Manhattan Federal Court to Racketeering Offenses

Acting Boss of Genovese Crime Family Pleads Guilty in Manhattan Federal Court to Racketeering Offenses

U.S. Attorney’s Office January 27, 2010
  • Southern District of New York (212) 637-2600

PREET BHARARA, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that an Acting Boss of the Genovese Organized Crime Family, DANIEL LEO, a/k/a "The Lion," and his nephew and primary lieutenant, JOSEPH LEO, pleaded guilty to racketeering charges today in Manhattan federal court.

According to the Indictment filed in Manhattan federal court:

Beginning in about 2005, DANIEL LEO became the Acting Boss of the Genovese Organized Crime Family, from his previous post as a member of the Family’s ruling panel. During the time DANIEL LEO served as Acting Boss, he continued to supervise a "crew" of Genovese Organized Crime Family members and associates, including JOSEPH LEO and others, who committed loansharking, extortion, and illegal gambling offenses under DANIEL LEO's direction.

Both defendants pleaded guilty today to Counts One and Two of the Indictment, which charged them with participating in, and conspiring to participate in, the affairs of the Genovese Organized Crime Family through a pattern of racketeering activity. Specifically, both defendants admitted during today's plea proceeding that they participated in the affairs of the Genovese Organized Crime Family by engaging in loansharking, and that they conspired to operate an illegal gambling business.

These two defendants entered their guilty pleas before United States Magistrate Judge RONALD L. ELLIS. They are scheduled to be sentenced by United States District Judge RICHARD J. HOLWELL on April 2, 2010. Each defendant faces a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense.

DANIEL LEO and JOSEPH LEO are currently serving prison sentences of 60 months and 46 months, respectively, based on their prior convictions in Manhattan federal court on extortion charges in October 2007.

Three other defendants charged in the Indictment have pleaded guilty: FELICE MASULLO, ANTHONY MASULLO, and ANGELO MASULLO. Each of them pleaded guilty on November 6, 2009, before Magistrate Judge THEODORE H. KATZ, to a superseding information captioned United States v. Felice Masullo et al., S2 08 Cr. 874 (RJH) (the "Information"). As alleged in the Information, FELICE MASULLO was an associate of the Genovese Organized Crime Family who had been proposed to be made a Soldier. FELICE MASULLO was charged with participating in, and conspiring to participate in, the affairs of the Genovese Organized Crime Family through a pattern of racketeering activity. In connection with his plea, FELICE MASULLO admitted that he participated in the affairs of the Genovese Organized Crime Family through his participation in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine, a conspiracy to extort a victim (identified as Victim-8 in the Information), and a conspiracy to operate an illegal gambling business. In addition, two of FELICE MASULLO's brothers—ANTHONY MASULLO and ANGELO MASULLO—also pleaded guilty to participating in a conspiracy to extort Victim-8.

FELICE MASULLO, ANTHONY MASULLO, and ANGELO MASULLO are scheduled to be sentenced by Judge HOLWELL on February 19, 2010. FELICE MASULLO faces a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense. ANTHONY MASULLO and ANGELO MASULLO face maximum sentences of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense.

Mr. BHARARA praised the efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New York City Police Department in this investigation.

Assistant United States Attorneys DAVID B. MASSEY, AVI WEITZMAN, BRIAN JACOBS, and SHARON FRASE are in charge of the prosecutions.