Carmine Galante Biography

Carmine Galante was born on February 21, 1910 in Castellammare de Golfo, Sicily. His father was a fisherman and moved the family to the United States in 1919. After arriving, they settled in New York City's lower east side.

Carmine became involved in crime at the age of eleven, when he formed a street gang made up of teenagers and children. After prohibition started, he was welcomed into the mafia as an associate and started working as an enforcer. In 1930, he was caught trying to hijack a truck in Williamsburg by a police officer named Joseph Meenahan. A gunfight erupted that injured the police officer and a six year old girl.

Following the incident, Galante was arrested and sentenced to twelve and a half years in prison. He was paroled in 1939 and returned to his life of crime, this time working for Vito Genovese as a hitman. Eventually, he was appointed as Jospeph Bonanno's chauffer and, after that, promoted to the rank of capo in the Bonanno Family.

In 1962, he was apprehended by police again and sentenced to twenty years in prison for drug trafficking. He was released ten years later on parole and, learning that Bonanno had been replaced by Phillip Rastelli, he tried to take over the Bonanno Family. He was successful, mostly because Rastelli was sent to prison, and had control of the family by 1974.

One of his first acts was to order hits on eight members of the Gambino Family. The Gambinos were encroaching on the Bonanno Family's drug trafficking operations and the operation was successful. In 1978, he was sentenced to more prison time after being caught associating with criminals, but an appeal by his lawyer, Roy Cohn, managed to get him released.

On July 12, 1979, Carmine Galante was shot while he was eating lunch in a Brooklyn restaurant. The injury was fatal and reportedly ordered by members of the Bonanno Family, including Anthony Indelicato, the son of "Sonny Red". Anthony Indelicato was later convicted of the murder in 1986 and sentenced to twelve years in prison.

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