by WorldTribune Staff, March 14, 2019
Gambino crime boss Francesco “Franky Boy” Cali was rubbed out in a gangland hit outside his home in Staten Island on March 13.
“Cali, 53, was shot several times and run over in front of his brick mansion in the lavish Todt Hill neighborhood at about 9:20 p.m.,” the New York Post reported. His wife and young children were inside, police sources told The Post.
New York has experienced a resurgence in mob activity in recent months. In October, Bonanno associate Sylvester Zottola was gunned down at a Bronx McDonald’s drive-through.
Cali had steered the focus of the Gambino syndicate to trafficking heroin and OxyContin, sources told The Post in September.
In August 2015, the New York Daily News reported that Cali had taken over as de facto boss of the Gambino family.
Cali is the first mob boss to be slain in New York City since John Gotti ordered the murder of then-Gambino boss Paul Castellano in 1985 at Sparks steakhouse in Midtown, the Post noted.
John Gotti’s brother Gene, was recently put back on the streets after spending 29 years in prison for dealing heroin.
A source told the New York Post that the hit on Cali was seen as “disrespectful” because it took place near his family home in an outer borough of New York City.
“Even Gotti had more respect,” one police source told The Post. “He did it out in Manhattan.”
Investigators, including the FBI, are investigating if the rub out of Cali was sanctioned by the commission of New York’s five mob families, or whether it was carried out by a “cowboy” gunman.
Cali, a native of Sicily, was believed by Mafia watchers to be the opposite of exuberant former boss “Dapper Don” John Gotti, because “no one ever sees him,” the Post noted.
Cali “was a real quiet old-school boss,” a police source told The Post.