Mobsters: Paul Castellano

Mobsters: Paul Castellano


Castellano was born in Brooklyn in 1915, to Giuseppe Castellano and Concetta (née Casatu). Giuseppe was a butcher and an early member of the Mangano crime family, the forerunner of the Gambino family.[1]Paul Castellano was the first cousin to Major General Vito Castellano[2] a commander of the New York National Guard and chief of staff for Governor Mario Cuomo.[3]

In 1934, Castellano was arrested for the first time. The 19-year-old Castellano refused to identify his two accomplices to the police and served a three-month prison sentence. By refusing to cooperate with authorities, Castellano enhanced his reputation for mob loyalty. Castellano often signed his name as “C. Paul Castellano” because he hated his first name, Constantino. Eventually he became known as Paul. Castellano was a big man standing at 6’2 1/2″ (189 cm) and weighed a hefty 270 pounds; with this stature many other mob guys steered out of his way.

In the 1940s, Castellano became a member of the Mangano family. He became a capo under boss Vince Mangano’s successor, Albert Anastasia. In 1957, after Anastasia’s murder and Carlo Gambino’s elevation to boss, Castellano attended the abortive Apalachin Conference in Apalachin, New York. With his butcher’s background, Castellano launched a successful wholesale poultry distribution business that, at its height, supplied 300 butchers in New York. His customers included two of the largest supermarket chains in the city, Key Food and Waldbaum’s.[1]

In 1975, Castellano ordered the murder of his daughter’s boyfriend, Vito Borelli. Someone had reported to Castellano that Borelli thought he resembled Frank Perdue, the famous owner and commercial spokesman for Perdue Farms. Castellano considered this an insult, due to Perdue’s balding, elderly appearance and his comically awkward mannerisms. Ironically, Perdue would later call on Castellano for assistance with union issues at one of his processing plants, a decision Perdue later said that he regretted. In 1980, Castellano allegedly ordered the murder of his son-in-law Frank Amato for abusing his daughter Connie. Amato disappeared and was never seen again. According to FBI documents, Gambino soldier Roy DeMeo murdered Amato, cut up his body, and disposed of the remains at sea.

Added on: January 27th, 2012


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