Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso is currently serving thirteen consecutive life sentences plus 455 years at a federal prison in Colorado. Now, for the first time, the head of a mob family has granted complete and total access to a journalist. Casso has given New York Times bestselling author Philip Carlo the most intimate, personal look into the world of La Cosa Nostra ever seen. This is his shocking story.
From birth, Anthony Casso's mob life was preordained. Michael Casso introduced his young son around South Brooklyn's social clubs, where "men of honor" did business by shaking pinkie-ringed hands--hands equally at home pilfering stolen goods from the Brooklyn docks or gripping the cold steel of a silenced pistol. Young Anthony watched and listened and decided that he would devote his life to crime.
Casso would prove his talent for "earning," concocting ingenious schemes to hijack trucks, rob banks, and bring into New York vast quantities of cocaine, marijuana, and heroin. Casso also had an uncanny ability to work with the other Mafia families, and he forged unusually strong ties with the Russian mob. By the time Casso took the reins of the Lucchese family, he was a seasoned boss, a very dangerous man.
It was a great life--Casso and his beautiful wife, Lillian, had money to burn; Casso and his crew brought in so much cash that he had dozens of large safe-deposit boxes filled with bricks of hundred-dollar bills. But the law finally caught up with him in his New Jersey safe house in 1994. Rather than stoically face the music like the old-time mafiosi he revered, Casso became the thing he most hated--a rat. It broke his family's heart and made the once feared and revered mobster an object of scorn and disgust among his former friends. For it turned out that a lifetime of street smarts completely failed him in dealing with a group even more cunning and ruthless than the Mafia--the U.S. government.
Detailing Casso's feud with John Gotti and their attempts to kill each other, the "Windows Case" that led to the beginning of the end for the mob in New York, and Casso's dealings with decorated NYPD officers Lou Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa--the "Mafia cops"--Gaspipe is the inside story of one man's rise and fall, mirroring the rise and fall of a way of life, a roller-coaster ride into a netherworld few outsiders have ever dared to enter.
One of the most dangerous, intriguing Mafia chieftains ever, Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso served as an apprentice thief and killer before rising to boss of the infamous Lucchese crime family, according to Carlo, a childhood neighbor of the South Brooklyn native. Carlo (The Ice Man) depicts a violent teen doted on by his gangster father and his mob godfather, Sally Callinbrano, groomed in the art of the kill and Cosa Nostra values. As his enterprises in hot goods and drugs prospered, Casso became the chief enforcer and mob royalty, able to buy a stylish lifestyle as well as an assortment of crooked cops and FBI agents. Tucked away in this book's blood-drenched pages is a picture-perfect love story between Anthony and his wife, Lillian Delduca. And for Mafia-obsessed readers, there are fascinating tidbits from the now jailed Casso about mob bosses John Gotti and Paul Castellano, Sammy "The Bull" Gravano, Hoover's FBI, the Russian mob and several thug rubouts. This powerful story is required reading for anyone with a yen for the Mafia, the criminal underworld and a law enforcement system struggling to keep up. 8 pages of b&w photos. (July) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
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June 29, 2008
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