If movies like The Godfather and Goodfellas have taught us anything, it’s that the mob often launders its money and masks its nefarious dealings through innocent looking “fronts.” For Don Corleone, it was via the Genco Olive Oil Co. And now, for the Gambino crime family, it’s through a 64 year old Sicilian who works for a baking supply company and still lives with his mother.
I guess it doesn’t get more innocuous-looking than that, right?
Yes, the Gambino crew went from “Teflon” to “Cupcake” with Brooklyn resident Domenico Cefalu, who has reportedly become the new boss of the crime mob once run by the late and notorious John Gotti.
The move to name Cefalu as the next Don of the Gambino crime ring is reportedly due to the fact that, as a born-Sicilian, Cefalu is “old-school” enough not to “snitch” like his allegedly “fat, lazy” Italian American counterparts. And not surprisingly, the decision has reportedly caused waves in gangland. The NY Daily News reports:
“I think they picked a Sicilian because they’re tired of the old, fat, lazy American Italians who turn into rats,” said a law enforcement source.
Cefalu’s ascension, first reported by the Gang Land News website, comes at a sensitive time for the crime family – but even more so for the convicted felon. Two fellow gangsters on the family’s ruling panel – Bartolemeo (Baboots) Vernace and Daniel Marino – are in jail, leaving Cefalu as the lone made man standing.
Cefalu is also still on supervised release for a 2008 extortion conviction and was warned at his sentencing by Federal Judge Jack Weinstein not to associate with any mobsters.
Cefalu is a low-key wiseguy who couldn’t be more different than the flamboyant Gotti.
He lives with his mother in Bensonhurst and says he’s a salesman for a baking supply company. He’s also served time for a heroin conviction and for refusing to answer questions before a grand jury about his then-captain Pasquale Conte.
Lewis Kasman, the late Gotti’s so-called “adopted son,” disputed the opinions of law enforcement experts who say Gotti hated Sicilian mobsters.
“I think John was not a fan of [Cefalu] because of his involvement with narcotics,” Kasman told the Daily News.
“John always said the Sicilians did the best work.”
So given his baking background, will Cefalu’s moniker become “The Cupcake” Don?