Mafia death squad leader Vito Guzzo, who is serving a 38-year sentence for five murders in the 1990s, said that he’s a changed man and wants an early release from jail.

In a court filing, he described himself as “completely rehabilitated” and someone who “has matured from a rash young man pursuing a lawless lifestyle, to a reflective, empathetic middle-aged adult.” According to New York Daily News, he is trying for compassionate release under the First Step Act criminal justice reform bill. It was signed into law by former President Donald Trump in 2018.

Gangsterism Out reported that federal prosecutors aren't impressed. According to them, “multiple government sources” said that he was inducted into the Colombo crime family within the past 10 years. At the time, he was at the federal prison in Danbury, Connecticut.

Assistant U.S. Attorney James McDonald wrote in a filing this month that in joining a "notoriously violent criminal enterprise as a made member, Guzzo swore to a lifelong commitment to commit crime to advance the interests of the crime family." He noted that Guzzo promised, among other things, to "follow the directions of superiors in the crime family, including to commit murder when instructed." McDonald further wrote that in view of the demonstrated history of violence by the inmate, there can be "little question that he would follow such instruction if given upon his release.”

Guzzo referred to himself as “elderly” in his request for release. He described his serious injuries from two shootings in 1990 and 1996. They left him with the loss of sight in one eye. They also led to the removal of part of his left lung. He said that he fears continued exposure to coronavirus in jail will kill him.

Guzzo had copped to the five murders as part of a 1998 guilty plea. He was the leader of the Giannini Crew, which is a team of mobsters from several Cosa Nostra families. They used the former Caffe Giannini in Ridgewood as their home base.

In January 1992, the mob killer, now 57, and his crew lured pot dealers John Ruisi and Steven Pagnozzi to a Queens social club. They forced them to their knees and demanded they reveal where they kept their drugs and cash. Ruisi and Pagnozzi didn’t tell Guzzo what he wanted to know. So he shot Ruisi in the head. Another crew member, Anthony Tabbita, did the same to Pagnozzi, said prosecutors. Guzzo and his crew put both the victims in a car and burnt it. One of the victims might have still been alive as they burned, said prosecutors.

About seven months later, he fatally shot Gambino associate Ralph Campione Sciulla, who died for not giving the Giannini crew a cut of his drug dealing and fraud money.

In November 1992, Guzzo orchestrated the shooting of Colombo associates Anthony Mesi, Paul Schiava and Vincent Ricciardo. Guzzo suspected that it was Ricciardo who had killed his father in 1987.

In October 1996, Tabbita and Guzzo killed Genovese crime family associate John Borelli. He was dating Guzzo’s ex-girlfriend, according to New York News.

This is a representational image. Ichigo121212/Pixabay

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