Friday, October 28, 2011

Montreal's Top 10 gangland murders: #1 Nick Rizzuto

     Of all the rub-outs, icings, hits, murders, slayings committed by underworld sleazebags in this burg, the most epic is undeniably the one that occurred almost precisely one year ago. 
    Sicialian Nick Rizzuto climbed his way to the top of the ridiculously wealthy cut-throat world of graft, extortion, drug importation and bullying that is the Mafia by knocking off the previous overlords run by the Calabrian Paolo Violi.  
    His multi-decade reign ended when a sniper shot blasted through the window of his solarium of his house  one of the dozen ornate houses on on Rizzuto Row (Antoine-Berthelet Avenue). It came from a hunting rifle set up in the adjacent Saraguay woods, just as the 86-year-old was chowing down for supper on Wednesday November 10, 2010, apparently with blinds wide open.
      Unlike the other murders on this list, the killer here remains unknown. The poetic irony in the killing of the Rizzutos lie in the fact that they reflect their heavy-handed evisceration of the Violi clan that they replaced. Not only was leader Paolo Violi killed, so too were his two brothers, the last of which was done in a very similar fashion as this, at home by sniper-shot, something that goes against the customs of the Mafia. 
Nick Rizzuto bought his house in 1981 for $33,654.
It's now evaluated at $714,000
     Rizzuto, a onetime avid golfer, was struck in the jaw by a .300-calbre bullet, which pierced the double-glass of his home, narrowly missing his wife Libertina. His daughter Maria (whose hubby Paolo Renda has also been missing and presumbly killed) was also in the home. The slug itself did not do much damage to the old man but the jacket cut his aorta. The bullet, which would usually be used to take down a moose, killed the old retired Montreal Mafia chief on impact.  
      So many of the Rizzuto gang have been killed over the last while that it is hard to keep count. The latest being Larry Lopresti, aka Lorenzo Lopresto whose father Giusseppe, Big Joe, was also killed in 1992 (and whose funeral was attended by Lino Saputo).  
    The reason the Rizzutos are being killed remains unclear. It seems highly-unlikely that street gangs could have organized such a professional hit. Whatever Mafiosi that has benefited from their demise would possibly be a good place to start investigating. 
    One theory has it that rival Mafioso suspect that his son Vito rolled on others in an effort to shorten his sentence, which ends next year in Colorado. When the former leader of the Montreal Mafia gets out, he will be without both Nicks, his son and father, who were both killed in the gang war. 

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Gotta agree with that one. Its straight out of gangster movies. With the Hells, Rizzutos so weak, its really war out there.

Nick said...

I doubt they paid $33k for that house in '81. The houses there are much better than our street where my dad paid over $100k in '82 for our cottage (2-storey + basement). But yeah those houses go for high hundreds if not a mil nowadays.