He is facing bookmaking and loan sharking charges which could put him behind bars for several years if convicted. The 60-year-old mobster claims the mafia rat set to testify against him had too cozy of a relationship with his NYPD handlers. In newly filed court papers he claims that federal prosecutors improperly supplied New York Mafia turncoat Peter Lovaglio with evidence. According to a NY Daily News report Zancocchio’s lawyer John Meringolo claims that he planned to use communications between Lovaglio and his handlers to challenge the turncoat’s credibility.
“John (Porky) Zancocchio”
But prosecutors gave Lovaglio all the recordings of phone calls and texts with his handlers damaging his ability to do so. He called those actions an abomination that amounted to prosecutorial misconduct. He claims the recordings were under a protective order but prosecutors insisted that they followed protocol and there was nothing improper about handing over the recordings. The communications were given to Lovaglio last year after he filed a civil lawsuit against the feds after their relationship ended.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason Swergold said the evidence or facts given to Lovaglio was nothing he didn’t already know. He said that it followed proper protocol and there was nothing improper about a witness reviewing his own statements before testifying. Peter who’s also known as Pug has been used as a cooperating witness by the feds for some time including taking the stand against Philly Mafia boss Joey Merlino. He is currently serving an eight-year sentence for a 2015 assault.
But Meringolo said, “It is beyond defense counsel’s comprehension as to why prosecutors flagrantly handed materials to (Lovaglio) that are so critical to the defense and the impeachment of this witness at trial.” According to court documents, Lovaglio can be heard on one of the recordings telling an agent he wouldn’t supply information unless he got money in return saying “Without the money don’t bother.” In another recording, he claims “They’re trying to get my sentence vacated. So we’re working on it.”
In what seems like a long shot Zancocchio wants all the charges against him dismissed because of the feds comfy relationship with Lovaglio. He is set to go on trial next month if his efforts to get the charges thrown out are unsuccessful. Zancocchio is currently out on bail after convincing a judge that prison food was so bad for him that he needed to be let out while awaiting trial. The Bonanno family has definitely had its share of hits from the feds over the year due to the help of various turncoats. The elder Cosa Nostra leader hopes to avoid adding to that total.