Shortly after the unexpected mafia news broke that Gambino crime family leader Frank Cali has been gunned down the “who done it” theories began to surface. The 53-year-old mobster was killed execution-style in front of his home in Staten Island by a still unknown assassin. It’s still unclear as to whether or not Cali was the victim of a mafia hit or not. The murder was captured by a security camera outside his home according to reports and more info on that can be found in a previous report (Frank Cali murder captured on security camera video) at About The Mafia. The question that everyone’s asking from law enforcement on down is who killed the New York Mafia leader and why.
A popular theory that quickly found its way to various media outlets was that Cali was murdered due to an internal rift within the Gambino family. According to this theory veteran mobster Gene Gotti, the younger brother of former Gambino boss John Gotti may have been behind the move against Cali. Gene was recently released from prison after doing a 29-year stretch in federal prison for dealing drugs. Gene a captain in the Cosa Nostra family, when he went away, did his time without making any deals or cooperating with the feds in any way which by Mafia standards made him a stand up guy.
According to tradition, this meant that Gene was entitled to a role in the Gambino family that is if he decided he wanted back in. According to some sources, Gotti continued to oversee a lucrative loan sharking operation from behind bars. Could Gene have been bold enough to make a move against the alleged acting boss of the family in an effort to take control? Perhaps Gotti felt shorted by the families new leadership and expected more than what he was given? Could Gene have aligned himself with others like former Gotti associate John Carneglia who was also recently released from prison in a move to take control of the Gambino’s away from the families Sicilian faction?
The NY Mafia family which was once headed by the Dapper Don had been taken over by Cali and fellow Sicilian born mobsters like Domenico Cefalu. This put the family back under Sicilian control and word was that Cali was bringing over mobsters from Italy to bolster the ranks because he trusted them more. So could the Frank Cali hit have been a move orchestrated by Gene Gotti to put the infamous organized crime family back into the hands of the American Mafia? Could we actually see an American-vs.-Sicilian war break out from within the family? Those loyal to Cali like Cefalu and powerful Sicilian captain Lorenzo Mannino would surely strike back if Cali was taken out without permission so taking back control of the family wouldn’t end with one hit.
The fact is that so far there isn’t any evidence that Gene had anything to do with this or that any rift exists except for some claims from unconfirmed law enforcement sources. After being away for so long it seems like a longshot that Gotti would have the connections within the family to pull off this kind of move and not end up on a hit list himself. There have been no indications so far that Gene has stepped back into the life and he could very well have decided to retire and enjoy his remaining year with his actual family. But local law enforcement and the feds were certainly going to explore this as a possibility putting the Gotti name back in the headlines. And we know all too well that when it comes to the Mafia anything is possible.
There are some other conspiracy theories being bounced around the web as well covering everything from the Sicilian Mafia, Mexican drug cartels, and even criminal rivals like the Albanians. Cali had deep ties to the Gambino family along with Italy’s Sicilian Mafia namely the powerful Inzerillo mafia clan. He married into the Inzerillo’s and his brother in law Peter Inzerillo is also allegedly a made man in the Gambino family. Some believe that the hit on Cali may have been carried out by the Sicilian mob over an internal dispute of some kind within their ranks. This would certainly be a dramatic twist as Cali was known to be highly respected at home and in the old country.
Could one of the other NY Mob families be behind the hit on Cali? There have been rumors of late that the Mafia Commission once thought to be defunct was still around and functioning. The idea that another of the Five Families could have gotten a Commission okay to whack Cali because he breached mob etiquette in some way or committed a big enough offense for him to be taken out has also been tossed about. The Gambino family has also recently been tied to the Mafia in Canada leading to some even wilder theories that perhaps the hit on Cali had something to do with the Montreal Mafia War or other turf battles up there.
If this was what it seems to be a mafia related hit what happens next may answer some of the many questions being asked. When it comes to Cosa Nostra we often look for who had something to gain and at what happens next. Is more violence on the way do we see more bodies drop if those loyal to the slain mob leader strike back in what may end up leading to war? Could it be that this was something else altogether and not tied mob business?