Reputed Gambino crime boss shot and killed outside NY home

Sergio Conner
March 16, 2019

Police work near the scene where an alleged leader of the Gambino crime family was shot and killed in the Staten Island borough of New York, Thursday, March 14, 2019.

USA media reported the 53-year-old's death marked the first murder of a NY mob boss in 34 years, since the death of Paul Castellano - another Gambino family boss - by order of John Gotti. According to a report published by CNN, Francesco "Frank" Cali was scooped up by investigators on the front steps of his Staten Island residence with fatal gunshot wounds across his torso.

Cali, also known as "Franky Boy", was shot six times, then hit by a blue truck in which the suspects fled.

He was pronounced dead at a hospital. Investigators haven't made any arrests in the hours that have passed but insists the case remains an open book until they publicly state otherwise. He served a 16-month sentence.

Paul Castellano, the Gambino family head at that time, was shot in the street on Manhattan's East Side.

Francesco "Franky Boy" Cali had only one criminal conviction, for extortion, but was believed to be the head of a family that was once the largest and most powerful organised crime group in the United States.

Cali was not only shot several times, his killers even ran over him with their vehicle, according to the New York Post.

Cops retrieve evidence from the scene where Mob boss Francesco Cali was clipped late Wednesday. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Cops retrieve evidence from the scene where Mob boss Francesco Cali was clipped late Wednesday. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

"Anybody who was making a move on boss of a crime family - besides a one-off renegade, you know, insane character - would have to have the backing of captains in that crime family".

After all, it had been 34 years since a Mafia don like him had been "whacked" on the streets of NY.

Federal prosecutors had referred to Cali in court filings in recent years as the underboss of the Gambino organization.

Staten Island's affluent Todt Hill neighbourhood is renowned for its crime connections.

Aggressive federal prosecutions in the past 25 years decimated the ranks of New York's five Mafia families.

"We thought those days were over", the city's mayor Bill de Blasio told journalists.

Last October, Bonanno crime family associate Sylvester Zottola, 71, was gunned down at a Bronx McDonald's drive-thru as he waited for a coffee.

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