Constantino Paul "Big Paul" Castellano (June 26, 1915 – December 16, 1985), also known as "The Howard Hughes of the Mob", was an American gangster who was boss of the Gambino crime family from 1976 until 1985, when he was gunned down outside Sparks Steak House in a hit orchestrated by his successor, John Gotti.
Castellano was born in Brooklyn in 1915, to Giuseppe Castellano and Concetta (née Casatu). Giuseppe was a butcher and an early member of the Mangano crime family, the forerunner of the Gambino family.
Castellano's sister Kathryn was married to Carlo Gambino, his cousin and a future boss of the Gambino crime family. Castellano was married to Nina Castellano; the couple had three sons (Paul, Philip, and Joseph Castellano) and one daughter, Constance Castellano.
Castellano often signed his name as "C. Paul Castellano" because he hated his first name, Constantino. Eventually he became known as Paul. Standing 6' 6" and weighing over 300 pounds, Castellano intimidated other mobsters with his massive size. Despite his immense size, Castellano wasn't a particularly tough guy, even admitting that he'd never been in a street fight, never punched anyone, and against longtime mafia rules and tradition never ever had to personally kill anyone before or after becoming a made man, claiming, that one of his associates killed the target for him, he was only present during the murder he was ordered to commit in order to become a made man. He is the only known mobster that never had to take part in a murder to become a made man, against mafia ritual. Unlike most mobsters, he wasn't a fighter, killer or intimidator. Though, he wasn't a killer, he was an immense money-maker, able to make an extraordinary amount of money in very short periods of time. Being such an incredible money-maker is how Castellano got in the other mob bosses good graces, and how he became a made man. He was making millions, even billions of dollars when he was just a soldier for his cousin and boss Carlo Gambino, he became a multi-million sure while he was a small-time associate, soon becoming a billionaire, and made Carlo Gambino a billionaire as well with his incredibly lucrative businesses and organized crime activities, such as extortion, loan-sharking, gambling, truck hijacking, aircraft hijacking, prostitution, pornography, cigarette smuggling, bookmaking, numbers racket, labor unions, and construction and he brought enormous wealth to other bosses over the years as well. As a soldier, Castellano was one of the biggest money-makers of the Five Families.
His nephew was actor Richard Castellano, who played Pete Clemenza in the Godfather (according to: http://www.famously-dead.com/criminals/paul-castellano.html).
Castellano himself was the son of a Bensonhurst butcher and small-time racketeer who, along a stretch of 17th Avenue, controlled the sale of tickets for the Italian Lottery—a popular game in the 1920s among Italian immigrants, with the winning number drawn in the old country.
Young Paul quickly demonstrated an ineptitude for street crime. In 1934, he was arrested in Hartford, Connecticut, for an armed robbery that was right out of a Keystone Kops comedy. He and two pals were on their way to a July Fourth celebration in Massachusetts. Passing through Hartford, they suddenly decided to stick up a clothing store.
The cash register turned out to be empty. As they were relieving the owner of the contents of his wallet, customers walked in through the front door, which they had neglected to lock. With Castellano waving a pistol, the trio escaped in his car, the license plate of which was immediately noted. The take for each amounted to $17. Arrested back in Brooklyn, Paul refused to name his accomplices and was sentenced to a year in jail. He served three months and returned to Bensonhurst with the reputation of being a stand-up guy.Paul’s father was an early member of Cosa Nostra. But it was underCarlo Gambino that Paul began his rise in the family’s ranks.
Paul Castellano dropped out of school in the eighth grade to learn butchering and collecting numbers game receipts, both from his father.
In July 1934, Castellano was arrested for the first time in Hartford, Connecticut for robbing a haberdasher and stealing a car. The 19-year-old Castellano refused to identify his two accomplices to the police and served a three-month prison sentence. By refusing to cooperate with authorities, Castellano enhanced his reputation for mob loyalty.
In 1937, Castellano married the sister-in-law of mafia don Carlo Gambino, Nina Manno. For the next several years Castellano was involved in gambling and bootlegging, but otherwise kept a relatively low profile.
In 1957, Carlo Gambino did his brother-in-law the honor of taking him along to the great Cosa Nostra conclave in Apalachin at which, among other items on the agenda, Carlo’s ascension as a new family boss was to be confirmed. There Paul would be able to mingle with such Cosa Nostra powers beyond New York as the Buffalo boss, Stefano Magaddino; Chicago’s Sam Giancana; Nick Civella from Kansas City; Cleveland’s John Scalish; the Florida boss, Louis Trafficante; Philadelphia’s Joseph Ida; and journeying all the way from California, the Los Angeles boss, Frank DeSimone, and the San Francisco boss, James Lanza.
Castellano was one of those who, in trying to escape the state police roadblock, stumbled unsuccessfully through the surrounding woods and brambles until he was finally detected wandering along a country lane, his overcoat torn, tie askew, his shoes mud-caked. But despite the ignominy of the event for Cosa Nostra’s overlords, it was not without benefits for Paul Castellano’s reputation. At age forty-two, he was one of the select few to have been present. And it didn’t have to be whispered about. It was right there on the public record for the edification of anyone who did business with him.On January 13, 1960, Castellano was sentenced to five years in prison for conspiracy to withhold information. However, in November 1960, Castellano's conviction was reversed by an Appeals Court.
Rise in Gambino family
The United States Government listed Paul Castellano as a family capo as early as 1960. In 1966, Castellano, then a powerful capo based in Brooklyn, was appointed acting boss while Carlo Gambino temporarily re-located to Florida to avoid pressure from law enforcement and immigration officials. At the same time, Joseph N. Gallo and Aniello Dellacroce replaced Joseph Biondo and Joseph Riccobono as the family's consigliere and underboss, respectively. Gambino remained the family's boss while giving day-to-day authority to Castellano. Gambino would return to New York, and resume control of the family, however, relying on Castellano more and more.
In 1975, Castellano allegedly ordered the murder of Vito Borelli, his daughter Constance's boyfriend. Someone had reported to Castellano that Borelli had compared him to Frank Perdue, the owner and commercial spokesman for Perdue Farms. Castellano considered this an insult because of Perdue's balding, elderly appearance and his comically awkward mannerisms. Borelli was murdered by John Gotti.
On July 1, 1975, Castellano was indicted on loansharking charges and with tax evasion for not reporting the profits from his illegal racket.
Castellano saw himself more as a businessman than a mobster; in fact, Castellano took control of non legitimate businesses and turned them into highly lucrative legitimate empires. However, Castellano's many businesses and empires, and those of his sons, only thrived due to their mob ties.
By then, with his butcher’s background, he had launched a moderately profitable wholesale meat operation. With his growing clout, he built this into a much larger enterprise called Dial Meat Purveyors, Inc., that specialized in the distribution of poultry to more than three hundred local retail butchers. He had his eye, however, on a much larger market—the supermarket chains. And he soon had two of them completely under his thumb. One was the Key Food Cooperative, on the board of directors of which sat a Gambino captain, Pasquale (Pat) Conte. The other was the Waldbaum chain. It wasn’t Castellano’s business acumen or competitive pricing that got him prime shelf space. When the immensely wealthy owner of the Waldbaum chain that bore his name was asked by a presidential commission on organized crime how he could have knuckled under to the Mafia, he replied, “Don’t forget I have a wife and children.”
Paul had turned over Dial’s day-to-day operations to two of his sons, Paul Jr. and Joseph. Because his long-range goal was legitimacy, neither son was inducted into La Cosa Nostra. Nor was a third son, Philip, whom he set up in a Staten Island cement company, ScaraMix.
Dial’s amazing success did not require analysis by business-school academics. Should an independent butcher complain about Dial’s prices, the upshot was no deliveries from Dial—or anyone else. If, say, a poultry producer elected not to use Dial, he would soon find that his chickens were missing from supermarket displays and promotions. And if supermarkets did not go along with Dial’s recommendations, they could find themselves being picketed by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, whose leadership enjoyed a cozy relationship with Paul Castellano. No extortion threats were made. They realized that it was a fact of life—and in the end,the costs were simply passed on to the consumer.
Sammy would often find Castellano seated on a balcony of the White House, in his robe and slippers, reading the New York Times and the Wall Street journal. “I thought he was the best thing since sliced bread,” Sammy said. “He was incredibly intelligent, extremely sophisticated, astute, business-wise, perceptive, creative, ingenious, and resourceful. He knew how to control people, he knew how to overcome difficulties, and he knew how to create, invent or orginate ingenious ideas and ways of making enormous amounts of money in a very small period of time. He was a genius. He was a bigger genius than Bill Gates or Warren Buffet when it came to business. He had that mannerism, that way about him. He was extremely articulate, clever and persuasive. Matter of fact, Fat Tony Salerno the boss of the Genovese family once was at a meeting we had. Fat Tony was listening to him and he said, ‘Paul, you talk so beautiful and sophistcated. I wish I could talk like that.’ So he was very, very articulate, compelling, and knowledgable, very, very, very smart, very, very, very sophisticated, very, very, very rich, he seemed very fair too, he was a multi-billionaire, he was an extremely powerful and influential man with endless political power, he was untouchable and invincible at one point, he had a'lot of politicians, law enforcement and government officials in his pocket, he had hundreds, possibly over a thousand cops, judges and politicians in his pocket. He was worth tens of billions of dollars so we all thought, with all of his wealth and power that he was going to run a real good show and rule America, and we thought he would do a great job at ruling the Gambino family, and keeping law enforcement and the government off of all of our backs. .
“The only thing was that he wasn’t a gangster and he didn’t understand gangsters. He was very, very fucking greedy and unfair, he was beyond greedy, it didn't matter to him as long as he got it all, and he wanted everything and anything, he didn't care about the organization, he didn't care about his soldiers or his underlings that were out every single day trying to earn livings and keep the family in power, or trying to put food on their tables, he was a greedy, scumbag, he didn't care about anybody or anything except money and power, he'd take anything and everything from you, it didn't matter to him if you went broke or lost everything. It was bullshit, none of us could understand how a billionaire, with all of that unlimited wealth and power could be so greedy, and want it all, and want more and more wealth and power, he didn’t understand what the fuck it was to be a gangster, to have to go out and rob, extort, hijack, murder, cheat, and do certain things to earn a living. He didn’t understand what a gangster was all about, obviously. I mean, he didn’t really understand gangsters like John Gotti and Angie Ruggiero or me or Frank DeCicco, anybody who is a real tough guy or gangster in that sense of the word.
“Like for Paul, John Gotti was into hijacking, armed robbery, extortion, prostitution, drug trafficking, contract killing. He was a thug. But you can’t be a thug forever if you want to get ahead. Somewhere along the line, you have to learn to be a racketeer as well. You can be both. Gangsters can have certain rackets they control because they have street knowledge. A racketeer could have all kinds of rackets because he’s very smart, but he can never be or understand what the fuck it is to be a gangster. He don’t know what it is to rob tires. He don’t know what it’s like to sit in your in-laws’ house with one room for you, your wife and your kids and you can’t pay rent or buy a car. Paul don’t know these things.
As Castellano became more powerful in the Gambino crime family, he started to make enormous amounts of money from construction, concrete, the ports, garbage businesses, trucking companies, meat, produce, and fish companies, labor unions, and building trade unions. Castellano's son Philip was the president of Scara-Mix Concrete Corporation, which exercised a near monopoly on construction concrete on Staten Island. Castellano also handled the Gambino interests in the "Concrete Club," a consortium of mafia families that divided revenue from New York developers. No one could pour concrete for a project worth more than $1 million without the approval from the Concrete Club. Finally, Castellano supervised Gambino control of Teamsters Union Local Chapter 282, which provided workers to pour concrete at all major building projects in the state of New York.
On October 6, 1976, Carlo Gambino died at home of natural causes. Against expectations, he appointed Castellano to succeed him over his underboss Aniello Dellacroce. Gambino apparently felt that his crime family would benefit from Castellano's focus on white collar crime. Dellacroce, at the time, was imprisoned for tax evasion and was unable to contest Castellano's succession.
Castellano's succession was confirmed at a meeting on November 24, with Dellacroce present. Castellano arranged for Dellacroce to remain as underboss while directly running traditional Cosa Nostra activities such as extortion, robbery, and loansharking.While Dellacroce accepted Castellano's succession, the deal effectively split the Gambino family into two rivaling factions.
In 1978, Castellano allegedly ordered the murder of Gambino associate Nicholas Scibetta. A cocaine and alcohol abuser, Scibetta participated in several public fights and then insulted a female cousin of Frank DeCicco. Since Scibetta was Gravano's brother-in-law, Castellano asked DeCicco to first notify Gravano of the impending hit. When advised of Scibetta's fate, a furious Gravano said he would kill Castellano first. However, DeCicco managed to calm Gravano down and accept Scibetta's death.
In February 1978, Castellano invited Irish Mob leader Jimmy Coonan and his underboss Michael Featherstone to a meeting at a Brooklyn mob owned restaurant. present at the meeting was Castellano, underboss Aniello Dellacroce, capo Carmine Lombardozzi and capo Anthony Gaggi. They made an agreement between the Gambino family and the Westies, an Irish-American gang from Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan. Castellano wanted hitmen that law enforcement could not tie directly to the Gambino family. The Westies wanted Gambino protection from the other Cosa Nostra families. The Gambino-Westie alliance was set in a meeting between Westies leader James Coonan and Castellano. According to Westies gangster Mickey Featherstone, Castellano gave them the following directive:
"You guys got to stop acting like cowboys - acting wild. You're going to be with us now. If anyone is going to get killed, you have to clear it with us."
Castellano also created an alliance with the Cherry Hill Gambinos, a group of Sicilian heroin importers and distributors, they are an elite death squad fir the American Mafia also. With the Westies, the Cherry Hill Gambinos, and the Gambino crime family, Castellano commanded a massive army of vicious killers and professional assassins.
In 1979, Castellano allegedly ordered the murders of Gambino capo James Eppolitto and his son, mobster James Eppolitto Jr. Eppolitto Sr. had complained to Castellano that Anthony Gaggi was infringing on his territory and asked permission to kill him. Castellano gave Eppolitto a noncomittal answer, but later warned Gaggi about Eppolitto's intentions. In response, capo Anthony Gaggi and soldier Roy DeMeo murdered James Eppolito Sr. and his son James Eppolito Jr.
In September 1980, Castellano allegedly ordered the murder of his former son-in-law Frank Amato. A soldier and hitman for the Gambino crime family, Amato had physically abused Connie Castellano when they were married. According to FBI documents, Gambino soldier Roy DeMeo murdered Amato, cut up his body, and disposed of the remains at sea.
In the late 1970s, Castellano met twice with businessman Frank Perdue, the alleged cause of the 1975 Borelli murder. Perdue wanted Castellano's help in thwarting a unionization drive at a Perdue facility in Virginia. However, according to Perdue, the two men talked, but never agreed to anything.
Wealth and power
In 1978, Castellano became worried about the ambitions of John Gotti,the protègé of Dellacroce. Castellano repeatedly made it clear that he would kill anyone who was dealing in narcotics—knowing that Gotti was doing just that.
Paul, however, as the new boss of all bosses, had constructed a $52 million luxury mega mansion on the highest part of Staten Island, exclusive Todt Hill, which commanded a spectacular view of the Verrazano Narrows Bridge arching over the entrance to New York’s Upper Bay.Castellano became a recluse, rarely venturing outside the mansion.
With its grand portico, wiseguys started calling the mansion the White House, an analogy that Castellano did not find displeasing. The elaborately landscaped grounds featured an Olympic-size pool and a manicured boccie court. The interior furnishings, rococco and heavy on brocade, may have bordered on the vulgar, but the marble was Carrara and the inlaid floors and notched moldings reflected exquisite workmanship.
But Castellano’s mansion on the hill perfectly symbolized a growing reclusiveness that over time would ultimately prove to be his undoing. By effectively abandoning his presence in the family’s social clubs, he began to lose touch with the pulse of the streets, with a rank-and-file engaged in traditional hijackings, loan-sharking and bookmaking—the nitty-gritty of mob life that he cared so little about. He saw himself as a man of substance with far-flung business interests. This led to a widening division between the so-called Castellano and Dellacroce factions in the family.
Castellano, ironically, never had any notable personal difficulties with his underboss, but he would with those who had allied themselves with Dellacroce, especially John Gotti. Carmine Fatico, Gotti’s aging captain, had expressed a desire to reduce his activities, and Dellacroce appointed Gotti the crew’s acting captain. Although Castellano didn’t hesitate to use Gotti on a hit contract, he considered Gotti no more than a thug.
Almost as if he needed a perverse reminder of the wellsprings of his strength, he constantly kept at his side a capo he had appointed named Tommy Bilotti. They made an incongruous pair. The boss, Paul, with his imposing Roman nose, a big man some six feet two, envisioning himself increasingly as a captain of industry, a member of the capitalist establishment, a man who favored satin dressing gowns and velvet slippers at home, who in public wore conservatively cut business suits and who carried himself with studied dignity—and Bilotti, who was Castellano’s main liaison with the violent side of Cosa Nostra, a foul-mouthed, bellicose, not overly bright hoodlum, with an ill-fitting toupee that he believed no one knew about. He had started out as Paul’s driver, bodyguard, personal executioner, and chief enforcer, and despite his elevated status still served essentially in that capacity with the dog-like devotion of a pet pit bull
Castellano was closest to a five-man-panel, consisting of capos Thomas Gambino, Daniel Marino, James Failla, Joseph Corrao and Thomas Bilotti. All of these men were Castellano loyalists. When not entertaining guests, Castellano wore satin and silk dressing gowns with velvet slippers around the house.
The extravagance of Castellano's mansion and lifestyle only served to increase resentment and envy within the Gambino family. This disaffection was concentrated among Dellacroce supporters, who were struggling to make money in the traditional family rackets. Typically, mob capos give 10% of their earnings to the boss. However, Castellano began to demand as much as 30% or 40% in some cases, which infuriated most Gambino mobsters. In addition, Castellano banned family members from running lucrative drug trafficking rackets, hypocritically, he was personally accepting massive drug payoffs from the Cherry Hill Gambinos and the DeMeo crew.
Many complaints originated from capo John Gotti, a prominent Dellacrocce supporter. Gotti fed this discontent that was rising in the family. In addition, Gotti defied Castellano by secretly distributing drugs, although it was no secret to Castellano. Gotti was ambitious and saw himself as a future family boss. However, as long as Dellacroce was alive, Gotti would not try to overthrow Castellano.
In 1983, Castellano allegedly ordered Roy DeMeo's murder. Castellano knew that DeMeo had a severe cocaine dependency and doubted his loyalty in an upcoming car theft trial. DeMeo was found shot to death in the trunk of his Cadillac Coupe De Ville.
In March 1983, the FBI obtained a warrant to install secret listening devices in Castlellano's house. Waiting until Castellano went on vacation to Florida, agents drugged his watch dogs, disabled his security system, and planted devices in the dining and living rooms. These devices provided law enforcement with a wealth of incriminating information on Castellano.
On March 30, 1984, Castellano was indicted on federal racketeering charges in the Gambino case, including the Eppolitto murders. Other charges were extortion, narcotics trafficking, theft, and prostitution. Castellano was released on $2 million bail.
In early 1985, Castellano was one of many Mafia bosses arrested on charges of racketeering, which was to result in the Mafia Commission Trial. Castellano was released on $3 million bail.
Paul Castellano didn't mind being tagged as a murderer. However, according to the book "Murder Machine" by Gene Mustain and Jerry Capeci, Castellano got offended when he thought that a police officer had implied that he was less than a gentleman. When Detective Kenneth McCabe placed him under arrest, he did not protest. But when McCabe mentioned to Castellano that his late cousin, Carlo Gambino had been a "real gentleman", Castellano looked hurt and then responded, "What? I'm not a gentleman?"
Later Years and Assassination
Sammy Gravano said “Now I’m supposed to be a racketeer, Paul wants me to be a racketeer, but I’m still a gangster in my heart. I’m a gangster in every inch of my body. I not only own this club, but I’m every fucking thing in it, in the middle of everything. Paul don’t know what that is. He never went through major hard times. He started out as a butcher in his father’s shop and then they started branching out. He was extremely wealthy right off. He was a captain for like a hundred years. He was a captain under Anastasia. He never knew what it was really like to go out and rob, what it was like when I would come home and look at my wife and have to say, ‘Deb, what’s the matter?’ And it’d be that the landlord called again. Son of a bitch! Three hundred is due on the rent and I couldn’t pay it. I gotta figure out what I can do. I don’t want to take out another fucking loan because I know, sooner or later, with all these loans, that I’m going to have to go rob again to pay them off. That’s the cycle you get into.
“Paul has no idea what it’s like to break open the piggy bank of oneof your kids to eat. What we would eat was that fucking pasta with ricotta night after night. It’s not that I didn’t like it. But every fucking night! I remember I’d come home and say, ‘No more ricotta, please.’ Deb would say, ‘No, tonight I made pasta with garlic and oil,’ and I’d say, ‘Oh boy, that’s good, that’s great.’ You know what I mean? Paul never knew what that was like.
“That’s what Paul’s downfall was. He didn’t have enough gangster in him. Even with Frankie DeCicco, when there was a business partnership we wanted to go in, Paul says, ‘Frankie? Frankie’s a gambler. He’s a street dog, Sammy.’ This was Paul’s mentality. “As time went on, in mob matters, he went with decisions that were more and more stupid. He would be fed dumb information by Tommy Bilotti. If he had kept Frankie DeCicco close by and listened to him, what was going on, maybe he would still be alive.
On December 2, 1985, Dellacroce died of lung cancer. Castellano then made two major mistakes. First, he did not attend Dellacroce's funeral - which was viewed as highly disrespectful by the Dellacroce/Gotti loyalists. Second, Castellano then named his bodyguard and driver, Thomas Bilotti, as the new underboss. Although Bilotti was a loyal mobster, he was also a brutish loanshark with little of the diplomatic skill required to hold such a high rank within the organization.
Within two weeks of Dellacroce's death, on December 16, Castellano and Bilotti were shot to death outside Sparks Steak House in Manhattan on the orders of John Gotti. They had been lured there supposedly to a meeting with Gotti in order to iron out their differences. The hit team included Vincent Artuso, Joseph Watts, Salvatore Scala, Edward Lino, and John Carneglia, with backup shooters positioned down the street including Dominick Pizzonia, Angelo Ruggiero and Anthony Rampino, Gotti and Gravano observed from a car across the street.
Controversy dogged Castellano even in death, as the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York refused to grant him the last rites of the church, citing the notorious circumstances surrounding both his life and death, leading many Italian-Americans, including New York State Governor Mario Cuomo, to accuse the predominantly Irish-American archdiocesan hierarchy of applying a double standard, citing the case of Brian O'Regan. O'Regan, an allegedly corrupt New York City police officer fearing impending arrest, committed suicide in a Long Island motel room the same year as Castellano's death; O'Regan received a Mass of Christian Burial despite his suicide note's authenticity being established beyond doubt. Castellano was buried in the Moravian Cemetery, a non-sectarian cemetery located in the New Dorp section of Staten Island.
The Castellano murder enraged Genovese crime family boss Vincent Gigante because Gotti never received permission from the Mafia Commission. Gigante solicited the help of Lucchese crime family boss Anthony Corallo to kill Gotti. On April 13, 1986, a car bomb meant for Gotti exploded outside a Bensonhurst, Brooklyn social club underboss Frank DeCicco was killed instantly Vittorio Amuso and Anthony Casso watched the murder from a car parked across the street.
During his life, Castellano was able to set up his sons in successful businesses that made them legitimate multi-millionaires. Although their companies benefitted from their father commanding a network of over 50,000 "made" members and hundreds of thousands of associates. One such business, Scara-Mix concrete, based in Staten Island, dominates the borough's concrete pouring industry. In 2006, during the racketeering trial of Gotti's son John A. Gotti, former captain Michael DiLeonardo testified that he was the bagman for the family and collected thousands of dollars per year from the brothers Peter and Philip who operated Scara-Mix.
John Gotti succeeded Castellano as Don of the Gambino crime family, which was confirmed by Salvatore Gravano, Gotti's underboss, when he entered into a plea bargain with the government in 1991. Gotti was later convicted of ordering Castellano's murder, along with many other crimes.
In popular culture
- Richard C. Sarafian plays him in the 1996 HBO network original film Gotti.
- Abe Vigoda plays him in the NBC network TV movie Witness to the Mob (1998).
- Sam Coppola plays Paul in the 2001 Canadian-American TV movie The Big Heist.
- Chazz Palminteri plays him in Boss of Bosses, a 2001 film on the TNT network.
- Donald John Volpenhein starred as Castellano in the 2018 biopic Gotti.
Paul Castellano on Life
“This life of ours, this is a wonderful life. If you can get through life like this and get away with it, hey that's great. But it's very unpredictable. There’s so many ways you can screw it up." Paul Castellano
"There are certain promises you make that are more sacred than anything that happens in a court of law, I don't care how many Bibles you put your hand on. Some of the promises, it’s true, you make too young, before you really have an understanding of what they mean. But once you've made those first promises, other promises are called for. And the thing is you can't deny the new ones without betraying the old ones. The promises get bigger; there are more people to be hurt and disappointed if you don't live up to them. Then, at some point, you’re called upon to make a promise to a dying man." Paul Castellano
“If the president of the United States, if he's smart, if he needs help, he’d come. I could do a favor for the president..." Paul Castellano
Paul Castellano on The Law
“We're not children here. The law is-how should I put it? A convenience. Or a convenience for some people, and an inconvenience for other people. Like, take the law that says you can't go into someone else's house...I have a house, so, hey, I like that law. The guy without a house-what's he think of it? Stay out in the rain, schnook.That’s what the law means to him..." Paul Castellano
People Murdered by Paul Castellano
1.Thomas Eboli/Capo/Genovese crime family/July 16th 1972/Ordered It/ Eboli was killed because he owed Gambino and Castellano $4million and refused to pay it back.
2.Vito Borelli/None/Independent/1975/Ordered It/ Castellano had Borelli murdered because he disrespected Castellano.
3.Nicholas Scibetta/Associate/Gambino Crime Family/1978/Ordered It/ Scibetta was killed because he was involved in a dispute with George DeCicco's daughter.
4.James Eppolito/Capo/Gambino Crime Family/October 1st 1979/Ordered It/ Eppolito was murdered because his charity scam had been exposed and had brought heat on the gambino crime family.
5.James Eppolitto Jr/Soldier/Gambino Crime Family/October 1st 1979/Ordered It/ He was killed along with his father to avoid leaving witnesses.
6.John Simone/Capo/Philadelphia Crime Family/March 1980/Ordered It/ Simone was murdered because he was involved in the unsanctioned murder of Philadelphia crime family Boss Angelo Bruno.
7.Frank Amato/None/Independent/September 19th 1980/Ordered It/ Castellano had Amato murdered because he had assaulted his wife, she was Castellano's daughter Connie.
8.Frank Piccolo/Capo/Gambino Crime Family (Connecticut)/September 19th 1981/Ordered It/ Piccolo was murdered because he brought heat on the gambino crime family.
9.Roy DeMeo/Soldier/Gambino Crime Family/January 10th 1983/Ordered It/ Castellano had DeMeo murdered to cover his tracks because DeMeo's car theft ring had brought heat on the gambino crime family and brought criminal charges against Castellano.