Top construction union boss allegedly had ties to John Gotti
James Cahill, who is currently under indictment for corruption charges, has been accused of having “extensive ties to members of organized crime,” according to federal prosecutors.
The accusation was made on Monday in a letter dismissing Cahill’s attempt to have his home confinement changed to an ankle-monitored curfew.
Cahill, the head of the New York State Building and Construction Trades Council, was charged with racketeering, bribery, fraud, and allegedly directing contracts away from his own unions. He was charged along with ten others.
Federal prosecutors have Cahill on wiretap bragging about accepting a $3,000 bribe and his mafia ties.
“John [Gotti] was like this [crossing his fingers]with my brother and brother-in-law and this guy, Bosko. That was his crew. That was his Irish crew,” he allegedly bragged on March 13th of this year.
The New York Post referenced the prosecutor and stated, “Cahill appeared to be referencing his brother Mickey Cahill, a member of the Westies — an Irish American crime gang that operated out of Hell’s Kitchen — his brother-in-law Buddy Leahy, and former head of the Westies Bosko Radonjic.”
Cahill reportedly called himself the “last of the Westies.”
James Coonan, the former leader of the group with connections to the Gambino crime family, was convicted of extortion and murder in 1988.
The filing also states that federal agents observed Cahill meeting with the leader of a Serbian crime family on more than a few occasions.
“Mr. Cahill does not have any ties to organized crime,” said his lawyer, Sam Talkin. “The Government cites ancient anecdotes and contradictory information in support of their claim, which demonstrates the weakness of the claim.”
Prosecutors are fearful that Cahill could use his reported ties to threaten witnesses if switched to a curfew. He currently has a $500,000 bond on home detention.
Cahill and his associates allegedly received over $100,000 in bribes since October 2018 so the union wouldn’t harass non-union workers, according to the filing.