Mobsters shook down a Queens labor union for two decades, prosecutors say

Andrew “Mush” Russo is shown here in an undated, vintage photo. (Photo: SOURCE, Graphic: Ethanb822)

A sweeping indictment was unsealed Tuesday in a federal court in Brooklyn, charging 14 defendants, including members and associates of the Colombo crime family, with labor racketeering, extortion, and money laundering in an alleged 20-year plot to take over a Queens labor union and its employee health insurance program.

Those charged with racketeering include Andrew “Mush” Russo, the family’s boss, as well as underboss Benjamin Castellazzo and consigliere Ralph DiMatteo. Other notable individuals charged are family captains Theodore Persico, Jr., Richard Ferrara, and Vincent Ricciardo, as well as soldier Michael Uvino and associates Thomas Costa and Domenick Ricciardo. …


In an opinion essay published in the New York Times on Friday, former ABC executive producer Shelley Ross accused CNN primetime host Chris Cuomo of sexual harassing her in 2005. The accusation against the younger Cuomo comes after his older brother, the former governor of New York, resigned following a state investigation that found he sexually harassed 11 women in various ways.

Ross wrote in the Times that she had been socializing with work friends while at a party in an upper west side bar when Cuomo entered, greeting Ross with a hug before dropping one hand to “firmly squeeze”…

John Durham (Photo: Public Domain / US Attorney’s Office, Graphic: Ethanb822)

John Durham, the special prosecutor assigned with probing the US Government’s 2016 investigation into Russian election interference, has charged a Democrat-tied cybersecurity lawyer with lying to the FBI.

An indictment unsealed Thursday charged Michael A. Sussmann, a partner of Perkins Coie LLP in Washington, with one count of making a false statement to the FBI. The federal case against the lawyer comes as the second prosecution tied to Durham’s probe, which has been in action for two-and-a-half years.

The indictment accuses Sussmann of lying to the FBI during a 2016 meeting at the bureau’s headquarters between Sussmann and the bureau’s…


California governor Gavin Newsom survived a long-awaited recall election on Tuesday evening and will remain in office, Ethanb822 projects. The prediction comes after several media outlets, including the Associated Press and CNN, called the election in favor of the governor and was calculated using publicly available election data.

Newsom, 53, is now the second governor in the history of the country to survive a recall election. The Republican-led effort to oust him picked up serious steam in the midst of the governor’s strict COVID-19 policies, a duplication of the national political divide over the infectious virus.

Newsom was backed by…

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (PHOTO: Legal team of Khaled Sheikh Muhammad via New York Times)

Two decades after the September 11 attacks, a series of coordinated terrorist attacks on US soil that have been etched into the memories of countless Americans, the plot’s admitted mastermind has yet to be convicted as his trial slowly grinds on.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, 57, appeared in a Guantanamo Bay military courtroom last week in his first trial appearance since COVID-19 began to ravage the United States. …

PHOTO: Office of Governor Gavin Newsom

President Joe Biden hit the campaign trail on Monday evening alongside incumbent Governor Gavin Newsom on the eve of election day. Biden was welcomed with rousing chants of ‘Joe’ from the crowd and opened up by reiterating his support for Newsom.

“Of course, the reason I’m here, and you all are here, is to thank and support our friend, Governor Gavin Newsom,” Biden said. “One of the best governors in the country.”

Biden told the crowd that the “eyes of the nation” are on California, and likened leading Republican frontrunner Larry Elder to former President Trump — a comparison Newsom…

Republican gubernatorial candidate Larry Elder speaks during a campaign stop outside a restaurant in San Diego, Calif., September 3, 2021. (Mike Blake/Reuters)

In a newly-added section of his campaign website, the conservative frontrunner in the California recall election, Larry Elder, rips a page out of former President Trump’s playbook by floating baseless claims of election fraud. The new website page was first reported by the Sacramento Bee.

The new section of the website, which redirects to a petition and a link to report “discrepancies in the California Election”, comes as incumbent Gavin Newsom’s numbers rise in recent polls. The latest poll, released Friday by UC Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies, shows Newsom up by almost 22 points. Around 60.1% of voters plan…

Kenneth Petty, the husband of multiplatinum rap artist Nicki Minaj, pleaded guilty on Thursday to failing to register as a California sex offender, according to documents unsealed in a federal court in California.

He faces a maximum sentence of 10 years behind bars, supervised release for the rest of his life, and a fine of $250,000. The offense comes as the latest in a slew of charges across Petty’s life, including a manslaughter conviction following a street corner shooting in 2002.

Petty was initially indicted on the federal charge in February of 2020 after moving from California to New York…

A Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office honor guard members stand at attention next to the casket of Lt. Chris Cunningham during his Aug. 15 funeral at Paxon Revival Center Church. The 48-year-old died of complications from the coronavirus on Aug. 5. [ DEDE SMITH | Dede Smith ]

Despite COVID-19 being the leading cause of death among law enforcement officers, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA) is opposing the Biden administration’s federal vaccine mandate.

Biden’s order, announced from the White House on Thursday, placed vaccine requirements on as many as 100 million Americans, including private sector employees and federal contractors. Also affected are employers with over 100 workers, as well as around 17 million workers who receive federal Medicare or Medicaid.

“We’ve been patient but our patience is wearing thin and your refusal has cost all of us,” the president said of unvaccinated Americans. “This is not…

AFP via Getty Images

Attorney General Merrick Garland announced Thursday that the United States Department of Justice is suing the state of Texas over Senate Bill 8, a controversial law also known as the Heartbeat Act, which bans abortion after just six weeks of pregnancy. The unveiling of the lawsuit comes just two days after Garland said the department was “exploring all options” to challenge the law following public outcry concerning its constitutionality.

S.B. 8 has made waves since it was instituted after the Supreme Court’s refusal to intervene. The law makes no exemption to allow abortions in cases of rape and incest, only…

Ethan Biando

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