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 Colombo Figure Given 25 Years On '80 Charges

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vinny nip

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PostSubject: Colombo Figure Given 25 Years On '80 Charges   Wed Feb 04, 2009 6:34 am

Colombo Figure Given 25 Years On '80 Charges


By LEONARD BUDER

Published: December 19, 1987



Alphonse (Allie Boy) Persico, a former leader of the Colombo organized-crime family who had been a fugitive seven years, until his arrest last month, was sentenced yesterday to 25 years in prison for a 1980 conviction on extortion charges.

''This sentence I'm getting now is a death sentence for me,'' Mr. Persico, 58 years old, told Judge Thomas C. Platt in Federal District Court in Brooklyn.

Mr. Persico, who was also fined $30,000, was convicted in May 1980 of using force and the threat of force to collect $10,000 lent at the rate of 2 percent a week. He could have received a maximum of 60 years in prison.

Seven weeks later, he failed to appear at a presentencing hearing - forfeiting bail of $250,000 - and was a fugitive until Nov. 9, when Federal marshals apprehended him in West Hartford, Conn., where he was living under an alias. Relationship With Brother

Before the sentence was announced, the head of the Justice Department Organized Crime Strike Force in Brooklyn, Edward A. McDonald, said Mr. Persico had emerged in the 1970's as the leader of the Colombo family, which he described as ''one of the most violent crime families.''

During his trial, Mr. Persico was described as the group's underboss, who had been acting boss while his brother, Carmine (Junior), now 54, was in prison.

Carmine Persico is serving a 100-year term on a conviction last year in Federal District Court in Manhattan, along with seven other defendants, for operating a ''commission'' that ruled the Mafia throughout the country.

Referring to Alphonse Persico's trial, Mr. McDonald said, ''He actually threatened a Government witness and engaged in a physical beating against him.''

Mr. Persico's lawyer, Frank Lopez, asked Judge Platt to take into consideration his client's poor health - he said Mr. Persico had a heart condition, cirrhosis of the liver and emphysema -and that he had led an exemplary life while a fugitive.

Judge Platt observed that the defendant had ''put on an extraordinary face'' while hiding out. But, he added, Mr. Persico had ''a very serious prior record'' and had ''displayed utter contempt for the judicial process'' by becoming a fugitive.
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