Montreal Mafia at a crossroads with release of another key figure

 

The recent release of Andrew Scoppa put another potential key player in the Montreal mafia back on the streets.

Authorities consider Scoopa to be the head of an independent Calabrian mafia clan and an increasingly important mobster in Montreal. He was busted back in 2017 on drug charges and had been held without bail until last Friday. He was released after the Crown mysteriously announced it would no long prosecute him on the current charges. The 54-year-old mobster was facing an extended stay behind bars had he been convicted.

 

“Andrew Scoppa”

 

Earlier this year Rizzuto crime family leaders Leonardo Rizzuto and Stefano Sollecito were acquitted of gangsterism and drug trafficking charges as reported here. It’s unclear as to whether or not Scoopa had any part in the strike against the Rizzuto family that led to the ongoing Montreal mafia war. The Rizzuto family as it once was may no longer exist but the Sicilian clan does and remains a factor in the changing Montreal underworld. But the question of who controls the mafia in Montreal today is a difficult one.

A prominent theory is that a breakaway faction from within the Rizzuto family was backed by the Ndrangheta in an effort to take control from the Rizzuto family. Even though Scoopa seemingly operated independently from any of the other major crime groups his Calabrian roots could have put him at odds with the Rizutto’s if he was forced to pick a side in the fight. Recorded conversations collected by authorities during the investigation were rather interesting when it came to the Rizzuto’s and the Montreal mafia war.

Sûreté du Québec Det-Sgt. Christian Ouimet testified at the bail hearing for Scoopa last year according to the Montreal Gazette report. He testified about Scoopa’s place in organized crime in Montreal and his growing drug empire. Authorities were able to bug Scoopa’s car capturing some very interesting conversations about the Rizzuto’s and the mob war. According to Ouimet Scoopa at times seemed to mock Sollecito and Rizzuto.

He appeared to take some satisfaction in the uneasy situation that Sollecito was in Quimet paraphrased Scoopa as saying “The Godfather is up against a wall, what will happen? What will happen with Mr. Sollecito now?” But he never admitted to or gave any clear indication of being behind any the strikes against members of the Rizzuto family. While he may not have been involved initially he could very well have been poised to take advantage of the current disarray and put himself in a more powerful position.

We seem to still have way more questions than answers when it comes to the current status of the Montreal mafia. Does Sollecito still have control over what remains of the Sicilian faction and what role is Rizzuto now playing if any? Scoopa was seen by some as having the potential to be in the mix for control in Montreal after so many other key pieces were off the board could he still be in a position to make that kind of move? The Montreal mafia war has calmed and a lull in violence has occurred over the past months. Will tensions be renewed with these leaders back on the streets?

While many see these latest developments as just more twist and turns that will lead to even more chaos. Perhaps they will have the exact opposite effect and actually bring closure to the chaotic feud. With key members back in place, it could make it easier for all sides to find an end to the war. There may be some kind of truce or understanding already in place bringing everyone to the table to hash out a way to move forward and get back to business. The crime landscape has certainly changed and the unrest has diminished the mob’s grip on things allowing other organizations like the Hell’s Angels to benefit.

It may be time for the powers that be to find peace instead of continuing to lose ground fighting amongst each other. Does what remains of the Rizzuto’s have to be completely destroyed before a new era can begin? We may have our answer sooner rather than later!

 

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