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Press Release

Acting Captain of the Bonanno Crime Family Sentenced to 14 Years’ Imprisonment for Racketeering Conspiracy

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of New York
Ronald “Ronnie G” Giallanzo Also Must Pay $1.25 Million in Forfeiture and Sell His Mansion in Howard Beach, Queens

Earlier today, in federal court in Brooklyn, Ronald “Ronnie G” Giallanzo, an acting captain in the Bonanno organized crime family of La Cosa Nostra, was sentenced by Chief United States District Judge Dora L. Irizarry to a total of 14 years’ imprisonment for racketeering conspiracy, including predicate acts of extortionate extension and collection of credit, as well as a related violation of the conditions of supervised release imposed for a prior racketeering conviction.  As part of his plea agreement with the government, the Court also ordered Giallanzo to pay $1.25 million in forfeiture and sell his mansion in Howard Beach, Queens, which was constructed using the criminal proceeds of the defendant’s loansharking business.  Giallanzo was also ordered to pay $268,000 in restitution to his victims.  Giallanzo pleaded guilty in March and June 2018.

Richard P. Donoghue, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), announced the sentence.

“Today’s sentence punishes a violent mobster for running a massive loansharking operation that victimized a community and earned him millions in illicit profits,” stated United States Attorney Donoghue.  “Giallanzo is headed to prison, forced to sell his mansion built on ill-gotten proceeds and held responsible for brazenly committing many of his crimes from behind bars while serving another organized crime-related sentence.  Together with our law enforcement partners, this Office will continue to vigorously investigate and prosecute members and associates of organized crime.”  Mr. Donoghue thanked the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, the New York City Police Department and the U.S. Probation Department of the Eastern District of New York for their assistance in the investigation.

“Members of these mafia families continue to prey upon the people of their communities, lining their pockets on the backs of victims through intimidation and acts of violence,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Sweeney.  “While these criminals lead lavish lifestyles, their victims struggle through years of financial distress and the constant fear of what will happen to them when they can no longer pay. The FBI New York Joint Organized Crime Task Force has been doggedly tracking members of the mafia for decades, and our work to round them up and put them in prison will not stop.”

Between 1998 and 2017, including eight years while incarcerated on a prior racketeering conviction and for nearly two years while on supervised release, Giallanzo ran a loansharking operation in which he loaned millions of dollars in cash at exorbitant weekly interest rates.  Giallanzo then directed a crew of Bonanno family soldiers and associates to  enforce the collection of the debts through violence and threats of physical injury.  Giallanzo used more than $1 million of the extortion proceeds to purchase, reconstruct and furnish a mansion, which featured five bedrooms and five bathrooms, radiant heated floors, high-end appliances, a built-in aquarium, wine cellar, home gym, three kitchens and a salt water pool with a waterfall.

The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Organized Crime and Gangs Section.  Assistant United States Attorneys Lindsay K. Gerdes and Keith D. Edelman are in charge of the prosecution.

Defendant Sentenced Today:

Age:  48
Queens, New York

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 17-CR-155 (S-1) and 06-CR-181 (DLI)

Defendants Previously Sentenced:

EVAN GREENBERG (also known as “The Jew”)
Age:  46
Queens, New York

RICHARD HECK (also known as “Richie”)
Age:  46
Queens, New York

MICHAEL HINTZE (also known as “Mike”)
Age:  52
Queens, New York

ROBERT TANICO (also known as “Chippy” and “Chip”)
Age:  50
Queens, New York

ANTHONY CUMINALE (also known as “Cubo”)
Age:  28
Queens, New York

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 17-CR-155 (S-1) and 06-CR-181 (DLI)

Defendants Pending Sentence:

MICHAEL PADAVONA (also known as “Mike”)
Age:  50
Queens, New York

MICHAEL PALMACCIO (also known as “Mike”)
Age:  47
Queens, New York

CHRISTOPHER BOOTHBY (also known as “Bald Chris”)
Age:  39
Brooklyn, New York

NICHOLAS FESTA (also known as “Pudgie”)
Age:  40
Oceanside, New York

ROBERT PISANI (also known as “Rob”)
Age:  45
Queens, New York

Age:  44
Queens, New York

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 17-CR-155 (S-1) (DLI)


John Marzulli
Tyler Daniels
United States Attorney’s Office
(718) 254-6323

Updated August 15, 2018

Violent Crime