Robert Ranieri, 37, of Glendora, N.J., pleaded guilty today to committing loan sharking activities on behalf of the Philadelphia La Cosa Nostra (LCN) Family.
Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Zane David Memeger of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and Edward J. Hanko, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division, made the announcement after the plea was accepted by U.S. District Judge Eduardo C. Robreno in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
Through court documents and statements made in court, Ranieri admitted that he conspired with Philadelphia LCN Family capo Anthony Staino and others to make a usurious loan to an undercover FBI agent and used threats of violence to collect payments on the loan.
At sentencing, scheduled for Sept. 25, 2013, Ranieri faces a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison.
The case was investigated by the FBI, the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, the Pennsylvania State Police, the New Jersey State Police, the Philadelphia Police Department, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration. Additional assistance was provided by the New Jersey Department of Corrections.
The case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney John S. Han of the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Frank A. Labor III and Suzanne B. Ercole of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Valuable prosecutorial assistance was provided by the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General.