More than a dozen members and associates of the Genovese crime family were arrested early Thursday on federal criminal charges, sources told NBC 4 New York.
Seventeen defendants, with nicknames like "Grandpa," "Lazy Eye," "Fat Sal" and "Birdie," were named in an eight-count indictment accusing them of racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit murder, attempted murder, operating an illegal gambling business and illegal use of firearms.
The suspects charged Thursday allegedly ran an illegal gambling operation, made murder threats and conspired to commit murder to futher the illegal operation, the indictment alleges.
The alleged mobsters known as Grandpa, Baldy and Fat Sal conspired together to kill someone in 2014, the indictment states. They did so, according to the charges, to be welcomed into the Genovese family and to increase their positions in the ranks of the operation.
Defendants known as Fat Sal, Lazy Eye, Grandpa, Zeus and others also allegedly ran a large-scale illegal bookmaking and sports betting operation, the indictment states. The gambling operation raked in more than $2,000 a day, the suit says.
Sources said 14 of the suspects were arrested Thursday as FBI agents, NYPD detectives and Nassau County police conducted raids in Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, the Bronx and Nassau County.
Those arrested were expected to appear in federal court in Manhattan later Thursday.