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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of New York

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Genovese Organized Crime Family Associate Convicted Of Murder Conspiracy And Other Racketeering Offenses

Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced the conviction in Manhattan federal court of SALVATORE DELLIGATTI, a/k/a “Fat Sal,” a/k/a “Jay,” for racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering, attempted murder in aid of racketeering, murder-for-hire conspiracy, participation in an illegal gambling operation, and a firearms offense.  The jury convicted DELLIGATTI yesterday on all six counts of the Indictment following a three-week trial before U.S. District Judge Katherine B. Forrest. 

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said:  “Salvatore Delligatti, in order to increase his standing in the Genovese Family, recruited a group of hitmen to murder an individual.  But Delligatti’s hitmen were caught red-handed by the Nassau County Police Department and the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office before they could carry out their hit.  Delligatti now stands convicted of this foiled murder plot and other crimes he committed with the Genovese Family.  We thank our partners in Nassau County and at the FBI.”

According to the Indictment, other filings in Manhattan federal court, and evidence presented in court during the trial:

From at least in or about 2008 through in or about May 2016, DELLIGATTI was an associate of the Genovese Organized Crime Family of La Cosa Nostra.  During this period, DELLIGATTI conspired with others to participate in and conduct the affairs of the Genovese Family through a pattern of racketeering activity that included a murder conspiracy, an extortion conspiracy, and the operation of an illegal sports betting business.  For example, as part of DELLIGATTI’s participation in the Genovese Family, DELLIGATTI committed the following crimes:     

From in or about May 2014 through in or about June 2014, DELLIGATTI conspired with Robert DeBello, a “made” soldier, and Ryan Ellis, an associate of the Genovese Family, to murder a neighborhood “tough guy” from the Whitestone section of Queens.  DELLIGATTI sought and obtained permission from DeBello to murder the intended victim.  However, instead of carrying out the murder himself, as DeBello had authorized him to do, DELLIGATTI hired a crew of hitmen from the Bronx to ambush and kill the intended victim at his residence.  DELLIGATTI provided the hitmen with a loaded .38 revolver and a get-away vehicle, and offered to pay them several thousand dollars for the murder.  As a result of wiretap surveillance of DELLIGATTI by the Nassau County Police Department and the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office, the crew of hitmen was apprehended in the get-away vehicle just a few blocks from the intended victim’s residence on June 8, 2014.  In their vehicle, law enforcement recovered the loaded revolver, a spray bottle containing a bleach solution, and other materials.

From in or about April 2014 through in or about May 2014, DELLIGATTI and others in the Genovese Family, including DeBello and Ellis, participated in a conspiracy to use threats of violence and economic harm to extort the owners and promoter of a night club located on the rooftop of a hotel in Queens.  


From at least in or about 2013 through in or about 2015, DELLIGATTI participated with others in the Genovese Family, including DeBello and Ellis, in a large-scale bookmaking and sports betting operation that took bets from bettors in Manhattan and Queens, among other locations, and made use of an offshore wireroom.  During and in furtherance of this gambling operation, DELLIGATTI and Ellis brought envelopes filled with cash to DeBello, the “made” soldier with whom they were committing these crimes.

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DELLIGATTI, 40, was found guilty of conspiring to participate in the Genovese Family through a pattern of racketeering activity, conspiring to murder and attempting to murder Joseph Bonelli in aid of racketeering, conspiring to commit murder-for-hire, possessing a firearm in furtherance of those crimes of violence, and participation in an illegal gambling operation.  DELLIGATTI faces a maximum potential sentence of life in prison.  DELLIGATTI is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Forrest on August 16, 2018.  

DELLIGATTI’s co-defendants, Robert DeBello and Ryan Ellis, previously pled guilty before Judge Forrest to racketeering conspiracy offenses for their roles in the murder conspiracy, the extortion conspiracy, and the illegal gambling operation that are described above.

Mr. Berman praised the outstanding investigative work of the Nassau County Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  He also thanked the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office and the United States Department of State, Diplomatic Security Service, for their assistance with the prosecution.  

The case is being prosecuted by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit.  Assistant United States Attorneys Samson Enzer, Jordan Estes, and Jason Swergold are in charge of the prosecution. 

Press Release Number: 
Updated March 29, 2018