Colombo crime family captain Dino Calabro decided to turn on his mafia pals and become a government informant after he was arrested in 2008.
The 59-year-old mobster helped the feds take down various members of the New York mafia testifying at the trials of former Colombo family leaders Thomas Gioeli and Joel Cacace. Calabro made his way through the ranks of the mafia becoming a violent captain in the Colombo family. He was facing a sentence of life in prison but a Federal District Court judge made note of his assistance as a witness that helped to take down numerous wiseguys before handing down the more lenient 11-year sentence.
“Dino Calabro (during his 2008 arrest)”
By his own account, he was responsible for the deaths of at least eight people including New York City police officer Ralph C. Dols. According to prosecutors, Dols was killed on orders from Cacace because the cop was planning to marry his ex-wife and he saw this as an embarrassment. Calabro testified that he was part of a mob crew that stalked Dols and executed him outside his home in Sheepshead Bay. He also admitted to killing a Colombo associate in 1991 and two more members the next year after a bloody civil war erupted within the organized crime family.
Calabro has been in the witness protection program for the last five years as he continued to help authorities in their fight against Cosa Nostra. Prosecutor James Gatta told the court that Mr. Calabro had helped the government essentially incapacitate the Colombo family. But some family members of his victims saw this as just another instance of the feds making a deal with the devil. Afte he was sentenced Deno apologized to the relatives of his victims and his own family renouncing his past. He said that he had been “intoxicated by the greed, power and notoriety” that went with the gangster life and now was “mortified by the criminal culture” in which he had chosen to invest his “life and identity.”