Daniel Pagano, an alleged captain in the Genovese crime family was quick to agree to a plea deal last year just a few months after being indicted in a racketeering case which included gambling, extortion, and loan sharking charges.
According to reports, his decision was an especially easy one considering his attorney Murray Richman somehow negotiated a plea deal with the feds with suggested prison terms that were 14-18 months lower than they should have been. Pagano was sentenced to only two years in prison per the terms of this plea deal. This screw up by the feds may end up benefiting not only Pagano but also Genovese family underling and co-defendant Michael “Mikey P” Palazzolo according to a ganglandnews report.
Sentencing was delayed for the New York mafia underling because his recommended sentencing terms of his plea deal were calculated to be between 41 to 51 months which is what Pagano should have faced. But the deal Richman reached with federal prosecutors for Pagano which contained sentencing guidelines of only 27-33 months has left a major discrepancy between the two deals. Palazzolo’s defense attorneys are arguing that their client deserves a lesser sentence than his New York mob captain received. The Judge noted the differences in sentencing guidelines and acknowledged that Pagano’s numbers were wrong and then postponed the mobsters sentencing until next week.
Prosecutors acknowledged that Pagano was a captain in the NY mafia and Palazzolo was an underling, but argue that his propensity for violence called for a lengthier sentence. According to prosecutors, there was no evidence linking Pagano to violence in connection with his mob crimes, but Palazzolo used threats and showed the willingness to act violently in multiple extortion attempts during the three year long Cosa Nostra family probe. But there is a sentencing statute that calls for judges ”to avoid unwarranted sentence disparities among defendants with similar records who have been found guilty of similar conduct.”
The judge directed the defense and prosecutors to address the discrepancies between the two plea deals and asked if they believed it should alter the determination of Mikey P’s prison term in light of the previously mentioned statute. Defense attorney’s for Palazzolo are sure to renew their request for their client to receive a lesser sentence than Pagano received at the next hearing. This may cause prosecutors to lessen the respective sentencing guidelines for the mafia underling.