How Chicago’s Historic Investigation Gave Closure to the Authors of “DEADLY ASSOCIATES.” • WildBlue Press

On July 27, 1998, a confidential letter was sent out to the FBI. Not just
would this letter arraign the well-known the mob distribute, the Chicago
Outfit, however it would go on to stimulate among the most historical trials in U.S. history, the
“Family Secrets” trial. This trial would consist of 2 hundred pieces
of proof, statement from one hundred twenty-five witnesses, and ultimately, eleven guilty decisions.

One of these accuseds, Joey “the clown” Lombardo, would deal with
several convictions of racketeering and serial murder. The day he was
sentenced to life jail time, Joey stood in the middle of the courtroom,
stone-faced. Behind him in the crowd sat 2 grown males, whose deals with slightly
looked like somebody Joey utilized to understand. Someone he had actually shot and delegated pass away in a puddle
of blood.

That somebody was Danny Seifert, and the 2 grown males were Danny’s
boys. They had actually seen their dad shot down, enjoyed him pass away, and went adrift
into their lives questioning if they would ever discover justice. Eventually, they
went seeking it. And because courtroom, on the day that Joey “the
clown” Lombardo was sentenced to life, these 2 grown males discovered it.

The Chicago Outfit

Before Chicago, there was New Orleans. The famous “La Cosa Nostra,” with its strong ties to Sicily, ran its very first corrupt mob offer through New Orleans’ second District method back in 1869. Because of the simple gain access to into the U.S. through New Orleans’s seaport, Sicilian immigrants flooded into the city, bringing with them their mobster roots of the old nation.

Decades later on, the widely known “Five Families” – Gambino, Lucchese, Genovese, Bonanno, and Colombo – had actually developed themselves in New York, with criss-crossing ties to each other through the “5-Points Gang.”  Led by Anotonio Vaccaerlli, likewise referred to as, Paul Kelly, the “5-Points Gang” hired and groomed gangsters such as, Jonny Torrio and Al Capone.  Eventually, Capone moved east to Chicago, ending up being well-known for his bootlegging and prohibited production. It was throughout restriction that Capone increased to prominence along side other harsh mob households, like, the Irish Mob.

The mob wars in between the Irish and Italians, eventually, climaxed with the St. Valentine’s Day massacre in 1929.  With no clear winner to the famous bloody massacre, the Irish picked to promote more elite positions in Chicago. Soon they were inhabiting a few of the most distinguished positions in politics and law, while the Italians continued with the mob ventures.

Soon, the Irish and the Italians started to do company with each other after seeing the shared advantage to the  marriage of their effective companies. The result was a deep corruption throughout Chicago’s upper departments of politics, banking, and law. The Irish utilized their positions for advantage of bribery payments, and the Italians utilized their well-known impact to take advantage of underground transactions. Soon these payments would protect city company licenses, licenses and agreements for Italian Mob, that made for simple access to cash laundering and racketeering plans. By the time Capone was at his height of power criminal and corrupt business poisoned the cops, the courts, business world, and the regional population, who were trying to find handouts or defense.

The ultimate combining of the “Chicago Outfit” and the Teamsters Union appeared unavoidable, and in early 1960 Chicago would need to handle the results of the Union as lawfully arranged and in your area acknowledged entity, which managed whatever from regional labor and earnings to the judicial departments to the regional drug trade. And as the scale of the Chicago Outfit’s company ventures ended up being bigger, the cash started to be more traceable. How does an arranged criminal business safe adequate cash to money a Las Vegas hotel? The FBI was figured out to discover.


A 2005 short article in the Chicago Tribune states, “The Chicago Crime Commission counts 1,111 Chicago-area [Mob-related] slayings since 1919, but only 14 have ended in murder convictions.”  Chicago has a long history of violence connected to arranged criminal offense.  And with countless lots of concrete structures being put for high-rise buildings over the last century in addition to the benefit of liing beside among the biggest fresh-water lakes worldwide, it’s really simple to make a body vanish.  Or, for those mobsters who wished to make a point, they would typically utilize a cars and truck bomb or leave a body in the trunk of a cars and truck and park it on Lower Wacker Drive, among the busiest streets in the nation.  But whether a body was discovered or not, tricks were generally kept and those accountable remained in the shadows.

Throughout most the 20th Century, nobody attempted break the Chicago Outfit, thus ensuring its tricks would go to the tomb.  But with the passage of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act in 1970, advances in monitoring innovations utilized by the Feds, and the ever-increasing usage of security electronic cameras all over, the Chicago Outfit needed to change their criminal operations to remain even more out-of-reach from the long arm of the Law.

Come early 1970’s, the Chicago Outfit started to run more privately under the veneer of genuine organizations, utilizing their power and impact to guide financially rewarding building and construction and circulation agreements to Mob-owned organizations.  Whether they got their cash through scams, extortion, prohibited betting, or agreements protected through hazards or bribery, the only thing that mattered was making money. Any hazard to those payments were met speedy violence.  Yet, as a brand-new millennium approached, things will alter: the Chicago Outfit would discover themselves threatened by internal forces, instead of external.

Family Secrets Investigation

In July of 1998, the FBI opened a typed, one-page note that just checked out: “I am sending you this letter in total confidentiality. […] IT [sic] is very important that you show or talk to nobody about this letter except who you have to.  The less people that know I am contacting you the more I can and will help and be able to help you.” The letter originated from Frank Calabrese Jr., the boy of Chicago Mob manager Frank Calabrese Sr. Frank Jr., jailed given that 1997, had actually chosen to turn on his dad and the whole Chicago Mob household.

Frank Jr.’s intent to work together appeared to be about desiring a much shorter sentence, however in truth, Frank Jr. desire to turn on his own dad originated from an individual vendetta versus his dad. Frank Sr. had actually been violent to Frank Jr., a lot so, that the last episode of violent rage had actually ended with Frank Jr. looking down the barrel of a weapon his own dad’s weapon. After considering the ins-and-outs of his dad’s violent, homicidal rage, Frank Jr. chosen to safeguard himself and petitioned the FBI to consider him their brand-new singing canary.

Ultimately, Frank Jr.’s flip would lead his uncle, Nicholas Calabrese, to likewise opening to the Feds.  Together, the 2 veteran mobsters would drop chests of Mob-associated details directly into the hands of federal detectives.  But maybe more significantly, Frank Jr.’s cooperation clarified the violent guideline of the Chicago Mob. His viewpoint was that of an expert who not just understood all the crucial gamers, however likewise their functions and duties.

On April 25, 2005, the Department of Justice launched a ground-breaking press statement concerning this examination that called fourteen accuseds being arraigned for “alleged organized crime activities;” consisting of, eighteen Mob-associated murders and one tried murder. The examination would be code-named “Operation Family Secrets,” and would eventually result in the biggest trial in U.S. history – both, in its scope and depth.

The Verdict

The resulting Family Secrets trial consisted of over 2 hundred pieces of proof, which were gathered over years of examinations, in addition to, statement from one hundred and twenty-five various witnesses.  Of the preliminary fourteen accuseds, eleven were founded guilty and provided sentences varying from twelve years to life jail time.

According to the FBI, Operation Family Secrets was among the most effective the mob examinations in their history of police.  It not just clarified a few of the darkest tricks of the Chicago Outfit’s internal operations, however it likewise went on to fix several murders, a number of which had actually stayed unsolved for years – consisting of, the murder of Danny Seifert. The conviction and sentencing of their dad’s killer, Joey Lombardo, in the Family Secrets trial supplied closure to Seifert household. And, while the Chicago Outfit wasn’t totally ruined, it will never ever once again run with a lot unchecked impunity.