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Daily Archives: June 15th, 2010

John Franzes Jr

The rat son of legendary Colombo mob boss tried to write a book about his gangster dad in the hopes of profiting off the story and was even called up to help as a consultant on a realty TV show about mob life.

The theory — put forward by a defense lawyer for of one of Colombo underboss John “Sonny” Franzese’s co-defendants — argued in Brooklyn federal court that John Franzese Jr. wrote an 80-page book proposal that he was peddling.

A former wiseguy-turned-FBI informant, Franzese defended himself on the stand, saying he was not trying to make money off his father’s alleged life of crime.

“They were aware of my father’s lifestyle and they were interested in gangsters,” he said, without elaborating when asked about the show by attorney Raymond Colon.

The name of the show or what network it was set to appear on was not mentioned during the testy testimony.

The makers of the show had promised him $1,500 per episode, Franzese Jr. said.

Asked about his 75-year-old mother, Cristina Capobianco, being evicted from her Long Island home in 2002 and how she has been forced to work, Franzese Jr. clammed up.

“I don’t want to discuss my family’s business,” he said.

But Franzese Jr., a recovering drug addict, has had no problem spilling his guts — and making money — when it comes to rating on his dad, according to the defense.

He is already making $400,000 as a government informant. He is currently in the witness protection program with the feds paying for his travel expenses and HIV treatment.

As for the book — with the working title “The John Franzese Story: Family, crime, drugs and redemption” — was co-written with a friend of Franzese Jr. named Steve Anderson, whom he met while in drug-rehab.

“Being in Hollywood … that’s the marketing tool,” Franzese explained.

Last week, Franzese Jr., 50, testified that his 93-year-old gangster father was once so feared that even Frank Sinatra  reportedly kissed his ring in public. He said dad introduced him to a life of crime when he was just 16.

Franzese Sr. is standing trial on racketeering charges, accused of shaking down a pair of strip clubs and a pizzeria on Long Island. He is on trial alongside four other accused mob associates.

The younger Franzese recalled becoming a Colombo bagman by age 18, with all the trappings and riches that came from being connected to a powerful mobster. He descended into drug addiction, according to his testimony, and to turn his life around, moved to California, where he eventually decided to begin informing for the FBI.

Franzese Jr.’s druggie lifestyle led him to contract HIV, he said last week.

Franzese Sr. even dozed off at the defense table during his son’s first day on the witness stand last week.

Franzese Jr. said he could never really make lots of money on his family’s story since he’s in the witness protection program.

“I assure you that some of you are never going to see me again anywhere,” he vowed.

Asked about why he was has testified against his father, Franzese said, “I am here to testify because he is a member of organized crime.”