The racketeering re-trial of reputed Philadelphia mafia boss Joseph “Uncle Joe” Ligambi and his nephew and fellow mobster George Borgesi is now in hands of the defense team. Prosecutors rested their case after presenting the jury with testimony from 28 witnesses including turncoat mobsters like Louis “Bent Finger Lou” Monacello along with numerous secretly recorded conversations and photos of reputed mobsters. The one major hurdle the prosecution faces is that all of this evidence and testimony was used in the original trial which led to both defendants being found not guilty on an array of charges and a hung jury on the main racketeering charges. Now the re-trial has shifted over to the defense team which will once again focus on discrediting the governments witnesses.
“Lou Monacello (left) and Joe Ligambi (right)”
The defense team began its attack focusing on the governments key witness Monacello calling former political aide Jerry Davis and multiple FBI agents to the stand. The defense in the original trial was fairly successful at poking holes in Monacello’s testimony and it hopes that it can once again do enough to bring his credibility into question. The testimony of former government witness Frank “Frankie The Fixer” DiGiacomo now being called as a witness for the defense could play a key role. He seemed almost like a defense witness when testifying in the original trial ripping Monacello as somebody who should of been dead a long time ago and calling Ligambi and Borgesi good people. Now the defense looks to take advantage of DiGiacomo’s testimony once again themselves calling him to the stand.
Closing statements are expected to be delivered next Monday or Tuesday with judge Eduardo Robreno then delivering his charge and then the case will be in hands of the jury. The Philly mafia could see a shift in power based on the outcome of this re-trial.