Rizzuto murder causing shakeup in Bonanno Crime Family
The murder of Nicholas Rizzuto Jr the son of powerfull Montreal Mafia boss Vito Rizzuto may have happened miles away from New York but its impact is still being felt. The murder has become the topic of choice among new york city wiseguys and more so for the Bonanno Crime family for which Rizzuto and the Montreal Mafia are closely alligned. It is being reported by organized crime experts that ever since the Rizzuto hit that Bonanno Family members have been meeting all over New York having discussions about the happening in Montreal and the Family Leadership void. Since the acting Bonanno Family boss Sal “the ironworker” Montagna was deported back to Canada the Bonanno Family has yet to appoint a new boss.
The Bonanno Family has been split into two factions one being the old guard of the family and the other being its sicilian couterparts or “zips” (Sicilian born Bonanno Family Members) who have started to gain more momentum inside the family. With a Rizzuto clan poised to strike at whoever they find guilty of the Rizzuo Jr murder many organized crime experts believe this could even lead to bloodshed in New York. Having the family leadership in limbo is dangerous in this type of situation as it could turn into a power struggle within the Bonanno Family and have impacts in both New York and Canada.
The Rizzuto Family on Montreal had already began to work more independently from the Bonanno Family since 1999 after the killing of family capo Gerlando Sciascia ordered by then boss Joe Massino, Sciascia was from Canada and has close ties to Vito Rizzuto. Then when family acting boss Sal Montagna – “Sal the Ironworker” was deported to Canada Rizzuto made it clear that he would not be answering to Montagna even if he was to be located in Canada as he considered Montagna a lightweight flunky and only held his position because of his association with a Massino appointed crony.So it is easy to see that there has been tension between the Bonanno Family leadership in New York and Canada which could now boil over. Especially since the Rizzuto Family and the Bonanno Family “Zips” have alligned somewhat for a more controlling hand in mob family business.
Since the Rizzuo murder current high ranking Bonanno family members in New York have been reportedly meeting with members of the Sicilian “Zip” and Montreal factions to try and come to a peaceful agreement. It’s reported that Bonanno Family Capo’s Nicholas Santora – “Nicky Mouth” and Anthony Rabito – “Fat Anthony” have been meeting with the Bonanno factions and are supporting Vincent Asaro a Bonanno Capo to take over as the new family boss. Asaro based out of queens is a long time Bonanno family gangster is said to be respected not only by the Bonanno Family old guard but also by the Sicilian “Zip” factions. Asaro is also said to have close ties and backing from members of the Lucchese , Gambino, and Genovese Mafia families.
Another key player in the recent talks to fill the leadership void is said to be Vito Grimaldi who is said to speak on behalf of the Sicilian faction of mobsters within the Bonanno Family. Grimaldi has ties to both sides as his daughter is married to the son of long time Bonanno Capo Joe Saunders Sr. Many think that Asaro has enough backing and clout within the Bonanno Family from both sides that Grimaldi will also back him being appointed as new Boss of the Bonanno’s. Although there is also some that believe Vincent “Vinny TV” Badalamenti may also be a candidate in which the Sicilian “zip” faction could possibly be pushing for as boss. It is still too early to tell who will become the new Bonanno boss but one thing is pretty clear that the last Massino appointed boss Vincent Basciano and once acting boss Sal Montagna are both out of the picture. Sources have been quoted as saying “Joe’s word don’t count no more” so there is without a doubt change ahead for the once mighty Bonanno Crime Family.