Rizzuto crime family the dominate force of the Montreal mafia over several years now was once considered a branch of the powerful Bonanno crime family of the New York Mafia.
The Rizzuto family paid tribute to the Bonanno family in New York for years until the killing of Montreal mobster Gerlando Sciascia in New York ordered by then boss Joseph Massino in 1999. Sciascia held the rank of capo in the Bonanno family and was killed because of internal beef with Massino who felt he was challenging his authority and overly supporting Montreal boss Vito Rizzuto. The Rizzuto family viewed the killing of one of their own as betrayal and it’s believed they broke away from any major connections to the New York mob refusing to pay any more tribute after the incident.
Salvatore “Sal the Ironworker” Montagna the former acting boss of the Bonanno family returned to Montreal from New York back in 2009 on an extradition order. Upon his return he tried to use his standing as an acting boss of a New York mafia family as weight attempting for form an alliance to take over control of the Montreal mafia. But his attempt and murder now shines as an example of how not to do things in Canada and how the mob there now does their own business. Its reported that his stature in NY held no sway with mobsters there and he was isolated for most part through out his stay and often mocked and laughed at behind his back.
Montagna seems to have tried to form an alliance with anti-Rizzuto factions and Ndrangheta clans of the Calabrian Mafia in an attempt to over throw the Sicilian backed Rizzuto’s. But his lack of respect and pull lead to him being murdered on orders of former Rizzuto mobster and partner Raynald Desjardens after he attempted to double cross Desjardens in a failed hit. Sal the Ironworker was born in Montreal but left as a kid for Sicily and then New York and never really had any roots there so was looked at as an outsider from America when he returned. It was also reported that his funeral was attended by family and friends but had no significant mafia presence a direct showing of disrespect in mob circles.
Many still debate as to the influence the Bonanno family still has over the Rizzuto family and the connections of the mafia in New York to the Canadian mob families. The Montagna murder along with other events would seem to strengthen reports that the Rizzuto family no longer has dominate ties to the Bonanno’s and the mafia in New York. The Gambino crime family reportedly has ties to mobsters in Toronto and possibly Montreal currently but also does not play a dominate role in the region.
Even after the death of long time powerful mob leader Vito Rizzuto the Rizzuto family remains the power in the Montreal underworld with new leaders now in place.