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Vincent Alo

Vincent "Jimmy Blue Eyes" Alo (May 26, 1904-March 9, 2001) was a New York mobster and member of the Genovese crime family who set up casino operations with mob associate Meyer Lansky in Florida and Cuba.

Early years

Born in Manhattan, either in Harlem or the Lower East Side), Alo started working on Wall Street at age 14. Vincent Alo was a godson of Carlo Gambino who in the 1960's ran a garment district trucking firm and was a close friend of Carlo's son, Thomas Gambino. During the time that Joe Colombo and Carlo Gambino were allies and business partners Carlo Gambino had persuaded Joe Colombo to make his godson a capo. As a young man, Alo was convicted of armed robbery and sent to state prison (either at Sing Sing or Dannemora state prisons). In 1926, Alo became a made man, or full member, of Joseph "Joe the Boss" Masseria's powerful New York gang. Named a caporegime of the old Joe Adonis crew, Alo oversaw prostitution, narcotics trafficking, and illegal gambling in Brooklyn. Vincent Alo's Harlem-based crew consisted of Nicholas (Nicky Blanche) Belandi, not to be confused with Nicholas Blanda, Lawrence (Larry Black) Centore, Francesco (Frank Casino) Cucola, Aniello Ercole, Frank (Frank Gallucci)Galluccio, Angelo Iandosco, August (Jerry) Lasetta, Gaetano Martino, Aldo Duzzaratti, the father and sons team, Thomas Milo Sr., Louis Milo and Babato Milo, Rocco Perrotta, James Picarelli, Louis Phadu, Rudolph (Rudy) Prisco, Nicholas (Cockeyed Nick) Baterni, Batisto (Bart) Salvo, George Smurra, Gaetano Somma. In 1929, Alo was introduced Alo to Lansky by Luciano, one of Masseria's lieutenants. An old friend of Luciano's, Lansky's was a valuable money-maker for Masseria's organization and Luciano wanted Alo to guard him. However, Luciano may have wanted Alo to also monitor Lansky (a claim reinforced in Vincent Teresa's My Life In the Mafia and The Last Mafioso by Jimmy Fratianno). Both Lansky and Alo were introverted, bookish men who wanted to become legitimate businessmen. The two mobsters quickly became friends. After Joe Colombo was shot and terminally incapacitated from the shooting Carlo proposed that Vincent to be promoted to acting head of the Colombo crime family while Colombo was, in his terms, "convalescing".

Florida casinos

When Alo first met Lansky, Alo was involved in a setting up a casino in the town of Hallendale, Florida (now called Hallandale Beach). Immediately realizing that Alo would be a perfect partner for this venture, invited him to join. When Lansky and Alo arrived, they immediately started making contributions to local fraternal organizations and secret payments to politicians and law enforcement. When they opened their first casino, there was no opposition. Business in the first casino was so good that Alo and Lansky soon opened a second one in the same town. This cooperative relationship between the town and the mob would continue uninterrupted until 1947. As the town's economy became more diversified, public embarrassment about the illegal gambling increased. Alo and Lansky closed their Hallandale operations and started focusing on casinos in Cuba.

Later years

In 1970, Alo was convicted of obstructing justice. Robert M. Morgenthau, U.S. District Attorney for the Southern District of New York, stated that "Alo is one of the most significant organized crime figures in the United States. He is closely associated with Meyer Lansky of Miami, who is at the apex of organized crime." Alo was described as being charming and intelligent, wellliked by his associates.

On March 9, 2001, Alo died of natural causes in Florida at age 96. He was later buried in Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx.

References

  • Sifakis, Carl. The Mafia Encyclopedia. New York: Da Capo Press, 2005. ISBN 0-8160-5694-3

External links

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