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Category Archives: Gambino crime family

Joseph LaForte

Gang Land’s Jerry Capeci  writes

Joseph (Joe The Cat) LaForte, a longtime Gambino crime family soldier who amassed a small fortune in real estate and who for many years owned the Little Italy building where the late Mafia boss John Gotti held court at the Ravenite Social Club on Mulberry Street during his heyday, cashed in his chips last week at the ripe old age of 99.

Mr. Capeci writes,   LaForte hailed from Little Italy but moved decades ago to Staten Island where he ran the crime family’s lucrative bookmaking operations. He died in his sleep in the early morning of August 23 in the home where he lived alone on Scheffelin Avenue in the exclusive, historic Lighthouse Hill section of the island that was settled by Dutch, French and English farmers in the late 1600s.

Mr. Capeci writes, “They don’t make ’em like that anymore,” said one local denizen who knew LaForte, his background, and his family members for many years. “He was a low key, low-level soldier who made a lot of money and didn’t piss it away. He bought property in SoHo and Little Italy when you could get it for a song and he lived off it for the rest of his life.” Gang Land News