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Velentzas Crime Family
The Velentzas crime family was a Greek-American criminal organization operating in the New York City area.Jerry Capeci. ''Jerry Capeci's Gang Land.'' (pg.170-172) ''The Man Gotti Never Got''. October 12, 1994/ref> The gang was mostly active in the 1980s and 1990s and specialized in illegal gambling operations. After the conviction of its leader in 1992, the criminal organization gradually become defunct. Spiros Velentzas The group originated from the ''Kourakos clan,'' a Maniot-Greek family led by Peter Kourakos. The gang rose to prominence in the late 1980s under the leadership of Spyredon "Spiros" Velentzas. The Velentzas family mainly operated in the Greek-American neighborhood of Astoria, Queens. With over 30 members at its peak, the group gained power in other Queens and Brooklyn neighborhoods in the 1980s and the 1990s by setting up and taking over illegal gambling rackets that included dice games and horse-racing parlors. Veletzas had a close working relationship with membe ...
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New York City
New York City (NYC), often simply called New York, is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2019 population of 8,336,817 distributed over about , New York City is also the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the State of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass. With almost 20 million people in its metropolitan statistical area and approximately 23 million in its combined statistical area, it is one of the world's most populous megacities. New York City has been described as the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world, significantly influencing commerce, entertainment, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, art, fashion, and sports, and is the most photographed city in the world. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplom ...
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Rudaj Organization
The Rudaj Organization is the Albanian mafia in the New York City metro area, named for the man accused of being its kingpin, Alex Rudaj of Yorktown, New York. The Rudaj Organization, called "The Corporation" by its members, was started in 1993 in Westchester and spread to the Bronx and Queens. Prosecutors say the Albanian gang was headed by Alex Rudaj and an Italian named Nardino Colotti who both had ties to the late Gambino soldier Phil "Skinny" Loscalzo. Organization Alex Rudaj (also known as Sandro Rudovic, Allie Boy, Uncle Rudaj, Xhaxhai,) of Yorktown, New York is the alleged boss of the Albanian mafia's Rudaj Organization, based in the New York City metro area. Rudaj is an ethnic Albanian from Ulcinj, Montenegro who immigrated to the United States in 1987. Federal prosecutors said Rudaj was the triggerman in a 1996 shooting of another organized crime figure after a high-speed chase in the Bronx. Rudaj hung out the sunroof of a car and fired at Guy Peduto as he fled in anoth ...
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Federal Correctional Complex, Allenwood
The Federal Correctional Complex, Allenwood (FCC Allenwood) is a United States federal prison complex for male inmates in Pennsylvania. It is operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, a division of the United States Department of Justice. Facilities The complex consists of three facilities: * Federal Correctional Institution, Allenwood Low (FCI Allenwood Low): a low-security facility * Federal Correctional Institution, Allenwood Medium (FCI Allenwood Medium): a medium-security facility * United States Penitentiary, Allenwood (USP Allenwood): a high-security facility FCC Allenwood is located approximately north of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, the state capital. Notable inmates *Andrew Auernheimer, hacker better known as "weev" * Carl Andrew Capasso, convicted of tax fraud; died in 2001 * James Holmes, Aurora Theatre shooter * Raymond Lederer, Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives, representing Pennsylvania's 3rd congressional district from 1977 to 1981. Con ...
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Gambino Crime Family
The Gambino crime family (pronounced ) is one of the "Five Families" that dominate organized crime activities in New York City, United States, within the nationwide criminal phenomenon known as the American Mafia. The group, which went through five bosses between 1910 and 1957, is named after Carlo Gambino, boss of the family at the time of the McClellan hearings in 1963, when the structure of organized crime first gained public attention. The group's operations extend from New York and the eastern seaboard to California. Its illicit activities include labor and construction racketeering, gambling, loansharking, extortion, money laundering, prostitution, fraud, hijacking, and fencing. The family was one of the five families that were founded in New York after the Castellammarese War of 1931. For most of the next quarter-century, it was a minor player in organized crime. Its most prominent member during this time was its underboss Albert Anastasia, who rose to infamy as the operat ...
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Brooklyn
Brooklyn () is a borough of New York City, coextensive with Kings County, in the U.S. state of New York. It is the most populous county in the state, the second-most densely populated county in the United States, and New York City's most populous borough,2010 Gazetteer for New York State
United States Census Bureau. Retrieved September 18, 2016.
with an estimated 2,648,403 residents in 2020. If each borough were ranked as a city, Brooklyn would rank as the
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Queens
Queens is a borough of New York City, coextensive with Queens County, in the U.S. state of New York. It is the largest borough of New York City in area and is adjacent to the borough of Brooklyn at the western end of Long Island, with Nassau County to the east. Queens also shares water borders with the boroughs of Manhattan, the Bronx, and Staten Island (via the Rockaways). Queens is the second-largest in population of the five New York City boroughs with a population of 2,230,722 as of the last official U.S census count in 2010. Approximately 47 percent of the residents of Queens are foreign-born.QuickFacts for Queens County (Queens Borough), New York; New York City, New York; United States ...
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Astoria, Queens
Astoria is a neighborhood in the western portion of the New York City borough of Queens. Astoria is bounded by the East River and is adjacent to three other Queens neighborhoods: Long Island City to the southwest, Sunnyside to the southeast, and Woodside to the east. , Astoria has an estimated population of 95,446. The area was originally called Hallet's (or Hallett's) Cove after its first landowner William Hallet, who settled there in 1652 with his wife, Elizabeth Fones. Hallet's Cove was incorporated on April 12, 1839, and was later renamed for John Jacob Astor, then the wealthiest man in the United States, in order to persuade him to invest in the area. During the second half of the 19th century, economic and commercial growth brought increased immigration. Astoria and several other surrounding villages were incorporated into Long Island City in 1870, which in turn was incorporated into the City of Greater New York in 1898. Commercial activity continued through the 20th centu ...
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Maniot
The Maniots or Maniates ( el|Μανιάτες) are a Greek ethnic group native to the Mani Peninsula, located in western Laconia and eastern Messenia, in the southern Peloponnese, Greece. They were also formerly known as Mainotes and the peninsula as ''Maina''. Maniots are described as descendants of the ancient Dorian population of the Peloponnese and as such related to the ancient Spartans. The terrain is mountainous and inaccessible (until recently many Mani villages could be accessed only by sea), and the regional name "Mani" is thought to have meant originally "dry" or "barren". The name "Maniot" is a derivative meaning "of Mani". In the early modern period, Maniots had a reputation as fierce and proudly independent warriors, who practiced piracy and fierce blood feuds. For the most part, the Maniots lived in fortified villages (and "house-towers") where they defended their lands against the armies of William II Villehardouin and later against those of the Ottoman Empire. N ...
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Greek-American
Greek Americans ( el|Ελληνοαμερικανοί, ''Ellinoamerikanoí'' , ''Ellinoamerikánoi'' ) are Americans of full or partial Greek ancestry. The lowest estimate is that 1.2 million Americans are of Greek descent while the highest estimate suggests over 3 million. 350,000 people older than five spoke Greek at home in 2010. Greek Americans have the highest concentrations in the New York City, Boston, and Chicago regions, but have settled in major metropolitan areas across the United States. In 2000, Tarpon Springs, Florida, was home to the highest per capita representation of Greek Americans in the country (25%). The United States is home to the largest Greek community outside of Greece, ahead of Australia, Cyprus, Albania, Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom. History Early history The first Greek known to have been to what is now the United States was Don Doroteo Teodoro, a sailor who landed in Boca Ciega Bay at the Jungle Prada site in present-day St. Petersbu ...
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Lucchese Crime Family
The Lucchese crime family (pronounced ) is one of the "Five Families" that dominate organized crime activities in New York City, United States, within the nationwide criminal phenomenon known as the American Mafia. The family originated in the early 1920s with Gaetano Reina serving as boss up until his murder in 1930."The Lucchese Family: Blood and Gravy"
by Anthony Bruno TruTV Crime Library
It was taken over by Tommy Gagliano during the Castellammarese War, and led by him until his death in 1951. Known as the Gagl ...
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Astoria, New York
Astoria is a neighborhood in the western portion of the New York City borough of Queens. Astoria is bounded by the East River and is adjacent to three other Queens neighborhoods: Long Island City to the southwest, Sunnyside to the southeast, and Woodside to the east. , Astoria has an estimated population of 95,446. The area was originally called Hallet's (or Hallett's) Cove after its first landowner William Hallet, who settled there in 1652 with his wife, Elizabeth Fones. Hallet's Cove was incorporated on April 12, 1839, and was later renamed for John Jacob Astor, then the wealthiest man in the United States, in order to persuade him to invest in the area. During the second half of the 19th century, economic and commercial growth brought increased immigration. Astoria and several other surrounding villages were incorporated into Long Island City in 1870, which in turn was incorporated into the City of Greater New York in 1898. Commercial activity continued through the 20th centu ...
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Gambling
A gambling stand in Paris Gambling (also known as betting) is the wagering of money or something of value (referred to as "the stakes") on an event with an uncertain outcome, with the primary intent of winning money or material goods. Gambling thus requires three elements to be present: consideration (an amount wagered), risk (chance), and a prize. The outcome of the wager is often immediate, such as a single roll of dice, a spin of a roulette wheel, or a horse crossing the finish line, but longer time frames are also common, allowing wagers on the outcome of a future sports contest or even an entire sports season. The term "gaming" in this context typically refers to instances in which the activity has been specifically permitted by law. The two words are not mutually exclusive; ''i.e.'', a "gaming" company offers (legal) "gambling" activities to the public and may be regulated by one of many gaming control boards, for example, the Nevada Gaming Control Board. However, this di ...
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Extortion
Extortion is the practice of obtaining benefit through coercion. In most jurisdictions it is likely to constitute a criminal offense; the bulk of this article deals with such cases. Robbery is the simplest and most common form of extortion, although making unfounded threats in order to obtain an unfair business advantage is also a form of extortion. Extortion is sometimes called the "protection racket" because the racketeers often phrase their demands as payment for "protection" from (real or hypothetical) threats from unspecified other parties; though often, and almost always, such "protection" is simply abstinence of harm from the same party, and such is implied in the "protection" offer. Extortion is commonly practiced by organized crime. In some jurisdictions, actually obtaining the benefit is not required to commit the offense, and making a threat of violence which refers to a requirement of a payment of money or property to halt future violence is sufficient to commit th ...
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Loansharking
A loan shark is a person who offers loans at extremely high interest rates, has strict terms of collection upon failure, and generally operates outside of local authority. Loan sharking is usually illegal, but predatory lending with extremely high interest rates such as payday or title loans is sometimes considered loan sharking. An unintended consequence of poverty alleviation initiatives can be that loan sharks borrow from formal microfinance lenders and lend on to poor borrowers. Loan sharks sometimes enforce repayment by blackmail or threats of violence. Historically, many ''moneylenders'' skirted between legal and criminal activity. In the recent western world, loan sharks have been a feature of the criminal underworld. Japan The regulation of moneylenders is typically much looser than that of banks. In Japan, the Moneylending Control Law requires only registration in each prefecture. In Japan, as the decades-long depression lingers, banks are reluctant to spare money and ...
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Racketeering
A racket, according to the current common and most general definition, is an organized criminal act or activity in which the criminal act or activity is some form of substantial business, or a way to earn illegal money either regularly, or briefly but repeatedly. A racket is therefore generally a repeated or continuous organized criminal operation or enterprise. Conducting a racket is racketeering. However, according to the original and more specific definition, a racket or racketeering generally involves extortion or criminal coercion. Originally and often still specifically, a "racket" in this sense refers to an organized criminal act in which the perpetrators fraudulently offer a service that will not be put into effect, offer a service to solve a nonexistent problem, or offer a service that solves a problem that would not exist without the racket. In many other cases, traditional racketeering may also involve perpetrators or racketeers offering an ostensibly legitimate service ...
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