John “Big Man” Venizelos has been sentenced to 11 years in prison after pleading guilty to running a mafia linked marijuana trafficking ring. Prosecutors say Venizelos is an associate of the Bonanno crime family and was one of the biggest New York customers of Jimmy “Cosmo” Cournoyer an alleged Canadian drug kingpin. The operation was an alliance between the Bonanno family, Montreal mafia namely the Rizzuto family, and the Hells Angels according to prosecutors.
“Jimmy Cournoyer and John Venizelos”
Federal agents busted up the ring back in 2013 seizing more then $150,00 of drug money along with illegal narcotics, guns, and encrypted blackberry devices. Venizelos also got into trouble for attempted witness tampering when he was caught sending encrypted messages from a blackberry to colleagues telling them that Cournoyer was bankrolling a murder fund to whack informants.
Cournoyer also arrested in that 2013 bust is still awaiting sentencing.