Vincent Asaro, 85, is getting out of the slammer.
Escaping a guilty conviction in 2015 for the notorious 1978 Lufthansa heist as depicted in the Martin Scorsese mobster epic “Goodfellas”, a Brooklyn judge ordered him released from prison stating concerns about the mafioso’s declining health in conjunction with the current pandemic.
Capo to the Bonnano family, Asaro pleaded guilty in 2017 to ordering his associates, one of which was the grandson of the late Gambino boss John Gotti, to set fire to the car of a man who cut him off in Howard Beach.
Brooklyn federal Judge Allyne Ross wrote in the ruling “Asaro’s age, in combination with his deteriorating health, constitutes an extraordinary and compelling reason for his release. In addition, the combination of the COVID-19 health crisis and Asaro’s age and pre-existing conditions constitutes an extraordinary and compelling reason for his release.” The judge determined that Asaro no longer posed any real threat to society if released.
Currently being held at a federal medical facility in Missouri, Asaro suffered a stroke in 2019 and as such, he struggles to speak in complex sentences. He is also unable to feed himself or go to the bathroom on his own. His defense attorney’s also stated that he even forgot the names of his children.
Judge Ross continued to write “While I do not know whether Asaro currently has the ability or the power to command others in his organization to carry out criminal acts at his will, I do not believe that, given Asaro’s current state, his release would put the public at a significantly increased risk of danger. And, considering his impairments … he is not likely to be orchestrating complex criminal schemes.”
There are federal authorities who opposed his compassionate release and, according to a spokesperson, are currently reviewing the decision and contemplating their legal options.