Reputed boss of Gambino crime family shot dead in NY

Gotti died while in prison in 2002 of throat cancer and Gambino died in 1976.

The reputed boss of New York's Gambino crime family was gunned down outside his home, dying a virtual unknown compared with his swaggering 1980s-era predecessor, the custom-tailored tabloid regular John Gotti.

According to local media in NY, he took the helm of the Gambino family in 2015, replacing Domenico Cefalu.

Cali becomes the first Mafia boss murdered in NY since Paul Castellano was gunned down outside Sparks steakhouse in Midtown in 1985.

A law enforcement official briefed on the investigation told ABC News that detectives are attempting to determine if Cali's killing signaled the revival of a "mob war".

Shea said the mob boss emerged from his home around 9:15pm. after the gunman backed his pickup into Cali's Cadillac SUV, damaging it. Police are now investigating the matter and have yet to arrest anyone in connection.

The New York Daily News reported Cali, also known as "Franky Boy", was shot six times then hit by a blue truck in which the suspects fled.

NY media reported that 53-year-old Cali was shot multiple times outside his vehicle on Staten Island on Wednesday evening, local time, by an unidentified man who then fled the scene in a blue auto.

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Detectives stand over body of reputed mob boss Paul Castellano, after execution on 46th St. Body of Castellano's chauffeur, Thomas Bilotti, lies partially covered in the street, far left.

The Gambino operation is said to be one of the five historic Italian-US mafia families in NY.

The Gambino Family was once among the most powerful criminal organizations in the USA, but federal prosecutions in the 1980s and 1990s sent its top leaders to prison and diminished its reach. An Italian mobster said Cali was "everything over there" in NY and referred to him as "a friend of ours".

Meanwhile, on March 13, two heads of the Bonanno family, Joseph Cammarano Jr. and John Zancocchio, were acquitted in court on conspiracy and racketeering charges, the New York Times reported. He died at the Duke University Medical Center last Thursday.

A prosecutor echoed those sentiments at a 2008 bail hearing, saying Cali was seen "as a man of influence and power by organized crime members in Italy".

Cali had served 16 months in prison following a 2008 extortion conviction.

"Papa! Papa!" one man yelled, a witness said.

  • Sonia Alvarado