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Three New Defendants and Multiple Counts Added to Genovese – ILA Racketeering Indictment.

December 15, 2011

            NEWARK, N.J. – Three additional defendants were arrested today and charged in a superseding indictment that adds dozens of counts to a previous indictment charging multiple defendants – including an alleged member and associates of the Genovese organized crime family – with racketeering and related offenses, New Jersey U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman and Eastern District of New York U.S. Attorney Loretta E. Lynch announced.

            A 103-count superseding indictment was unsealed this morning in Newark federal court in which previously-charged defendants Stephen Depiro, a soldier in the Genovese organized crime family of La Cosa Nostra (the “Genovese family”), and three Genovese family associates – Albert Cernadas, former President of International Longshoremen’s Association (“ILA”) Local 1235 and former ILA Executive Vice President; Nunzio LaGrasso, the Vice President of ILA Local 1478 and ILA Representative; and Richard Dehmer – are charged with racketeering conspiracy, including predicate acts of conspiring to extort Christmastime tributes from ILA members on the New Jersey piers. The superseding indictment includes, as part of the racketeering conspiracy charge, 61 additional predicate acts of extortion of various ILA members by Cernadas and 12 additional predicate acts of extortion of ILA members by Nunzio LaGrasso. In addition to the Christmastime extortion scheme, LaGrasso is charged with the extortion of an ILA dock worker so that the worker could retain a supervisory job at the port.

            The superseding indictment also charges newly added defendants Michael Nicolosi, Julio Porrao and Rocco Ferrandino – all current or former ILA supervisors – with extortion conspiracy and extortion. Nunzio LaGrasso and five other defendants, including Thomas Leonardis, the President of ILA Local 1235 and ILA Representative; Robert Ruiz, the Delegate of ILA Local 1235 and ILA Representative; and Vincent Aulisi, former President of ILA Local 1235, are charged with additional counts of extortion of ILA members. Ruiz is also charged with obstructing justice by impeding a grand jury investigation. In total, the superseding indictment contains allegations regarding the extortion of 28 victims.

            The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jacquelyn M. Kasulis and Jack Dennehy of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of New York, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony Mahajan, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of New Jersey.

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