News and commentary on organized crime, street crime, white collar crime, cyber crime, sex crime, crime fiction, crime prevention, espionage and terrorism.
Monday, September 12, 2016
My Washington Times Review Of 'Chin: The Life And Crimes of Mafia Boss Vincent Gigante'
My review of Larry McShane's Chin: The Life and Crime of Mafia Boss Vincent Gigante appeared today in the Washington Times.
In the history of America’s criminal organization Cosa Nostra, popularly known as the Mafia, Vincent “the Chin” Gigante stands out not only as one of the most powerful and successful bosses, he also stands out as one of the most peculiar.
The New York tabloids covering the Cosa Nostra “goodfella” criminals called Vincent Gigante “the Oddfella” due to his habit of walking the streets of Greenwich Village in New York City in pajamas, slippers, a ratty robe and an old cap. Helped along by an escort, he would mutter incoherently to himself.
Larry McShane, a reporter with the New York Daily News, offers an interesting look at this unusual gangster in “Chin: The Life and Crimes of Mafia Boss Vincent Gigante.” The book details how Gigante rose from a professional boxer to be a driver, bodyguard and hit man for crime boss Vito Genovese, and eventually became the Genovese crime family boss himself. The book also explains how his public “crazy act” kept him out of prison.
... By 1985, when Gigante was surreptitiously running the Genovese family, and Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno took the law enforcement heat as its straw boss, the family’s assorted illegal enterprises included gambling, extortion, loan-sharking, and bid-rigging,” Mr. McShane writes. “The Genovese influence extended to the garbage, concrete, construction, and music industries; they held an iron grip on the labor that allowed them to dominate the New Jersey waterfront, the Javits Convention Center and the Fulton Fish Market.”
The Chin ruled more than 400 mobsters and his influence extended to Philadelphia, Miami and other areas far from New York.
You can read the rest of the review via the below link:
Paul Davis is a writer who covers crime. He has written extensively about organized crime, street crime, sex crime, cyber crime, drug crime, white collar crime, crime fiction, crime prevention, espionage and terrorism. Paul Davis' "Crime Beat" column covers crime in both fact and fiction. His online column offers his Q&As with cops, crooks and crime writers. He is also a regular contributor to the Washington Times and Counterterrorism magazine. His work has also appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News and other newspapers, magazines and online publications. Paul Davis has been a student of crime since he was a 12-year-old aspiring writer growing up in South Philadelphia. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy when he was 17 in 1970 and served on the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk during the Vietnam War. He also served two years on the Navy harbor tugboat USS Saugus at the U.S. nuclear submarine base at Holy Loch, Scotland. After serving in the Navy, he went on to do security work as a Defense Department civilian employee and he later became a freelance writer. You can read Paul Davis' Crime Beat columns, crime fiction and magazine and newspaper pieces on this website. You can also read his full bio by clicking on the above photo.