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John William Tuohy lives in Washington DC

John Tuohy's History of Organized Crime in Chicago (F)


                                               F

Fisher Ralph: A name used by the Fischetti brothers in various legal corporations they controlled. Rocco Fischetti used the name most frequently.
Farming Life: Tony Accardo owned a farm as did Paul Ricca, who, among other properties, had a summer estate located near Long Beach, Ind., worth about $75,000.(In 1959) as well as an 1,100 acre farm in Kendall County, Ill., In the 1940s. the farm was managed by Francis Curry and was held under  the name of Nancy DeLucia. Louis "Little New York" Campagna, also has farms in Berrien Springs, Mich., and Fowler, Ind.
Frestel, James: 7936 South Wolcott Street. A partner in the Mid-West News, an outlet for Continental news service

Fischetti’s Charles, Called “Trigger Happy Charlie” in the mob, had an arrest record that dated back to 1912 when he was arrested for carrying a concealed weapon. . He was fined him $300 and gave him a year in jail, but the sentenced was mysteriously over turned on appeal. A year later, Fischetti was arrested for the murder of Sidney Masser but he walked free from the charges. Several weeks later Fischetti was picked up for the killing Frank Caponi but that didn’t stick either
    Charlie Fischetti was a genuine, slicked down, cold as ice killer who was suspected of having taken part in at least fifteen murders. He was a surly, humorless, mean hood. Unlike most gangsters in Chicago, refused to recognize the rules generally observed by the underworld. Fischetti threatened news reporters he didn’t like, beat up anyone who crossed his path and would happily kill a policeman if the odds worked in his favor. He spread around cash to politicians and poured a fortune into the state and national Democratic Party.
    In the 1930’s, Charlie and his brothers took control of the gambling concession on the Chicago’s North Shore and in suburban Lake County. They set up casinos, which they supported by running special gambling trains in from the city.
It was Charlie Fischetti who discovered that some Asian businessmen were willing to pay enormous money to import blond, blue-eyed western women into their countries for sex. Fischetti, working with New York’s Frank Costello and other mafia leaders across the country, organized the first white slave export market for prostitutes out of the United States and into Asia.
   Over the years, as he grew rich, Fischetti tried to change his image and buy respect for himself. He took offense at being called a gangster. He preferred that the newspaper people call him “An American success story that lived his life as a patron of the arts”.  Whenever a newspaper article appeared that Fischetti didn’t like, the writer got a call from a surely Fischetti, demanding an explanation for the story.  Fischetti complained so much, that by 1950, according to legendary Chicago newsman Jake Lait, there was an understanding between the city newspaper editors and the Fischetti’s that Murray Humphreys and Jake Guzak would get blamed for everything bad that happened. “The Hump and Jake Guzak are from the old school,” wrote Jake Lait “and don’t mind much, as it makes them big shots in the only circles where they would be welcome. Charlie Fischetti, a man now in his 50’s, is a dude and a snob. He platinas his gray hair to give it a platinum blond effect and wears elevator shoes to make himself taller. He usually goes by the name “Dr. Fisher” and sometimes “Fish” and gives his occupation as art
collector.”  That article cost Lait a savage beating at the hands of five unknown hoods late one night as Lait walked home one night from a Chicago salon.
      Brother Rocco Fischetti was present at the all-important mob meeting held in Chicago in April of 1932 when Chicago police who raided the meeting at Congress hotel seized Lucky Luciano, Meyer Lansky, Chicago Paul Ricca and Fischetti. The hoods were released after being booked and printed since the police had no reason to hold them.   A few years after that, in the late 1930s, when Charlie and Joe Fischetti were heading up the mob’s prostitution rackets, Virginia Hill, who became Bugsy Siegel’s (1905-1947) girlfriend, fell under their command.
   The Fischetti’s and Frank Sinatra backed two Chicago related hoods in a yellow gossip sheet called Hollywood Night Life Magazine. Many speculate that the magazine was actually owned by the Fischetti brothers and was dreamt up by them as an extortion tool against celebrities that they wanted to control.  The editor in chief of the paper was Jimmy Taratino, who was considered, by the California attorney general’s Office, to be a made member of the mob. His salesman on record in the paper was another known mobster, Joe Tenner, a convicted pimp who had also done time in San Quiten prison on a morals charge.
   By 1950 Charlie Fischetti, no longer called “Trigger Happy Charlie” to his face, was considered to be second in charge of the Chicago syndicate.  Eventually Charlie and brothers took control of the gambling concession on the North Shore and then bribed and beat their way into Lake County. There, they set up casinos in Deerfield and ran special gambling trains in and out of Chicago. 
    In the late 1950s, the brothers helped to make Chicago the national center for fencing stolen jewelry, by fronting a fence/ jewelry store on Adams.  They also kept a luxurious business suite at 3100 Sheridan roads, a place once rented by Mayors Big Bill Thompson and Ten Per Cent Tony Cermak, where some of the organizations meetings were held. Other were held at Jake Guzak’s suite in his down town hotel or at the Owl Club, a gambling joint down in Calumet City said to be owned by Tony Accardo.
   Otherwise, Fischetti, a genuine slicked down cold as ice killer suspected of having taken part in at least fifteen murders, busied himself by taking over the North Shores gambling, Dion O’Bannon’s old territory and by building up the organizations white slave trade to the Orient where they were starting to pay big money for young American women with blonde hair.
  All three brothers were known to have a fascination for showgirls with blond hair and long legs. They had their problems with women of course. Rocco was dating a former Miss Chicago, she moved in with him in 1945. After a few months Rocco got tired of her and told her to move out. She refused so he beat her senseless and tossed her out on to the street half naked. Joe Fischetti preferred movie stars and became involved with a starlet called Peggy Maley.
   When the winter months come, the Fischetti never broke their old bootleggers’ habits of retiring for the winter to Havana where they used to have major gambling concessions and later to Florida’s west coast. Joe Fischetti fancied himself quite deep-sea fisherman and spent days causing the islands off of Florida trailed by Narcotic Enforcement officer and the Coast Guard.  Fischetti said he was looking for big fish, the Fed’s said he was smuggling in dope provided by Lucky Luciano.
Rocco Fischetti died in 1964. By that time he was a mob outcast, a relic from the past owing huge sums of money to Sam Giancana, Ralph Pierce, Les Kruse and Johnny Drew.  Charlie, also a degenerate gambler, died just a broke and powerless as did his brothers.

Ferraro Frank AKA Strongy. Ferraro was Sam Giancana’s underboss in the 1960s. He was instrumental in helping to plan the ill fated mob conclave at  Joseph Barbara's house.

Figel Harry: In 1959, the Chicago mobs cop, Richard Cain, and his partner were arrested for the murder of an ex-convict named Harry Figel. Cain said it was “a square shot out” in the middle of the streets of Chicago. Figels family lawyers said, Cain took Figel downtown and “plugged him and then dragged him back out to the streets.” The charges were dropped but Cain was picked up again for shaking down $30,000 from an old hooker named Grace Van Scoyk. He was suspended for using electronic surveillance equipment on members of Mayor Daly's staff. From there he ended up in Miami training anti-Castro Cubans for the Bay of Pigs invasion.

FiDanzi, Guido: Born 1927. Resided at 220 Arquilla Drive, Chicago Heights. Murdered on August 9, 1972. FiDanzi had been released from prison several months before from a  two year sentence on federal tax charges and was desperate to stake a claim in Chicago’s booming loan sharking rackets. Less then 11 months after his parole, FiDanzi was indicted again for his role in a  multi million dollar loan shark operation and needed money for his lawyers. He took a job working as a collector for Jimmy Catura who had assumed control Frankie LaPorte’s extensive gambling empire, but apparently that wasn’t enough and without permission, he began his own shylock operations in suburban territories long held by other mob bosses. But he was probably killed because of his desperation. The bosses assumed he would lose his pending case and, faced with a longer jail term,  would turn informant. FiDanzi was called to a party owned by his brother-in-law, Tony Renzetti. When he arrived he was shot five times with one bullet in the head, one in the chest and three in the groin.    

Flatten: Chicago Mob speak for murder. Mob informant Nicholas Calabrese said that once mob boss Angelo LaPietra was so eager to have one man killed in 1983 that he was willing to have the man's companion - a complete stranger - gunned down as well.
"Wrong place, wrong time?" the federal prosecutor asked
"Yes," Calabrese said softly. Calabrese said he had some misgivings but went ahead with the killing of a stranger who had done nothing to offend the mob but went ahead with the killing. "In my mind, I knew I had to do this because if I didn't, my brother would have flattened me," he testified. "I would have been left there."
"Flatten?" the federal prosecutor asked
“Yeah” Calabrese said “in mob slang means its means "kill"

Fortune Magazine: In 1985, Fortune Magazine named Tony Accardo as the second wealthiest mob boss in the country behind Fat Tony Salerno in New York of the Genovese family. The magazine estimated Giancana’s wealth at nearly 100 million.
Galiano, Dominic: A soldier in the mob. He was executed in 1966 as a suspected informant for the FBI.

Four Deuces Café: On South Wabash Avenue, a salon where Johnny Torrio maintained his headquarters. The Cafe had a saloon on the first floor, gambling dens on the second and a brothel on the third floor. Al Capone, then known as Al Brown, went to work here in 1920 as a bouncer.

Fraser Osborn: One of three major Black lieutenants under Ralph Pierce’s gambling empire

Family Amusement Center: 5913 Roosevelt Road. In the 1960s and 1970s, the center was the headquarters for Fifi Buccieri’s massive loan sharking business.

Fratto Thomaso Luigi Giuseppe: Born July 17th, 1907. Fratto grew up on the near-west side of Chicago with brothers Frank and Rudolph, cousin to “Milwaukee Phil” Alderisio and were also related, by marriage to William “Willie Potatoes” Daddano, Albert “Obie” Frabotta and Ralph “Bottles” Capone. As a young man Fratto partnered with Charles “Cherry Nose” Gioe and joined with the so-called Fiore Mob which, in the 1930s, was led by Ted Virgilio, was suspected of muscling in on speak-easy’s and cabarets demanding 50% of the profits. In April of 1933, Fratto was listed as the secretary and treasurer of the Wardrobe Check, Washroom attendant, and Doorman’s Union when he and Virgilio were arrested for questioning in an $800,000 mail robbery. Later that year in December, Fratto was arrested in another mail robbery, this time a $250,000 heist pulled in the Chicago loop. Also picked up for questioning in this robbery was John J. “Boss” McLaughlin, a one-time state legislator and political fixer for the north-side gang. McLaughlin and Fratto were of the first suspects arrested and questioned about the murder of Chicago Tribune reporter Jake Lingle in 1931.

Fratto Rudolph AKA Rudy. Brother of Giuseppe Fratto. By the 1980s, Fratto was a top lieutenant in the Elmwood Park faction of the Outfit, working under Joe "The Builder" Andriacchi and John "No Nose" DiFronzo.

Ferris Inn: A Morton Grove speakeasy located on Ferris Ave. for 15 years. Close by were the Club Del Rio, Murphy’s, Hank Trausch’s, The Bungalow, The Dells (Named after waited Dell Jones) The Four Season (AKA The Black Forrest) and the Rendezvous. Most of these clubs were on or just slightly off Dempster Road. In Niles Center was the orginal Villa Venice and the Garden of Ala on Lake Street. The Touhy gang ran or supplied most of these saloons.

Fecarotta, John, Born 1928 Murdered Sept. 14, 1986 Fecarotta’s arrest record, which went back to 1965, included 17 arrests and two felony convictions (Burglary and armed robbery) dating back to 1942 when he was only 14-years-old. Most of his arrests were for using muscle in collecting loans for syndicate loan     sharks.
   Fecarotta owned a flashy Mercedes-Benz and was known to flaunt a mistress while his wife drove around west suburban Riverside in a station wagon. He grew up in the old Italian neighborhood near West Ohio Street and was a member of the mob's South Side "26th Street crew," which controls the rackets in the 1st Ward and nearby Chinatown. The 26th Street Crew--also known as the "Chinatown Crew" or "South Side Crew"--emerged in the 1950s and flourished through the '60s and '70s, surviving on extortion money taken from the area's storage and trucking companies, railroad depots, junkyards and chop shops.  Vincent Inserra, who headed the organized crime squad of the Chicago FBI office from the early 1960s to the mid-'70s said "They were known for bombings. Not necessarily to kill people. But if they wanted to put fear into the hearts of people, that would do it."
  "When [Outfit bosses] needed someone killed, they called people they trusted," said another former agent "They needed people who couldn't talk on them because they had already killed people. There were several people from the 26th Street Crew who had killed people. They were the logical choice."
   Gambling was a big cash maker for the crew and helped to establish the crew as a pillar in the Outfits wheel of power. Headed by Frank "Skids" Caruso from the late 1950s through the 1970s, the crew set up illegal backroom betting parlors. They took bets on virtually anything and when a gambler couldn’t pay his debts, they made him a juice loan, which earned them even more cash.   When heroin was popular, the crew took its cut of that as well, charging dealers a set fee to operate in their territory.
   In the 1980s, the crew became the Old Neighborhood Italian-American Club located
26th Street and Princeton Avenue. There, crew bosses and enforcers would gather to drop off payments or play craps in the back rooms.
   Gambler Ken Eto testified that Fecarotta supplied the muscle that kept the deadbeats in line. A customer who routinely disrupted the monte game was taken by car to a secret location where he was beaten by Fecarotta with a two-by-four.
  Although Fecarotta was essentially hired muscle, he was, on record anyway, a business agent and organizer for Local 8 of the Industrial Workers Union although federal officials charged he was a ghost employee. He lost the union job in 1982 during a federal probe of the union.
  Fecarotta was jailed in April of 1986 for refusing to answer questions from investigators from the President's Commission on Organized Crime in Washington DC.
During the hearings Chief Judge Aubrey Robinson in U.S. District Court ordered Fecarotta to enter George Washington Hospital after he complained about pains in his arm. It turned out he was fine.
  During the hearings, Fecarotta also acknowledged that he knew Anthony Accardo, Joseph Aiuppa, Joseph Lombardo, Anthony Spilotro, Vincent Solano, Joseph DiVarco, Cerone and LaPietra.
   Pressed to explain how he knew so many gangsters if he himself was not a gangster, Fecarotta explained that he grew up with these men and accidentally “Bumped into these guys in restaurants, bowling alleys or the tracks, and then only to say hello and talk about their families or talk about girls and play a little cards."
   He said he knew gambler Ken Eto, by then a government witness whom had already testified that Fecarotta was a made member of the Mafia, but according to Fecarotta’s version, he knew Eto over the past twenty five years because he worked for him as a "watchman" trying to catch cheaters.
   Asked about imprisoned mob chief Angelo LaPietra, his reputed boss, Fecarotta said: "There is nothing to tell about him. I don't know anything about him. Actually, he is a friend. He is not an enemy."
"Who are your enemies?" Ryan asked.
"My enemies? My wife," Fecarotta answered.
"Who else?" he was asked.[1]
"I don't think I have too many enemies," Fecarotta said. "If I do, I don't know them."
   Fecarotta claimed he made a living as a gambler, winning up to $25,000 a year betting on horse races. He never had a credit card, never declared his racetrack winnings on income tax returns and paid cash for everything, including his Mercedes.
   When it became known that Fecarotta's brother, Thomas, was a Chicago police officer, a prosecutor asked "How does he feel about your life of gambling?"
"He never made any comment," Fecarotta replied.[2]
    According to gangster Nick Calabrese, the Outfit's enforcer in Las Vegas, Tony Spilotro had angered his bosses by indulging in a series of burglaries, dope deals and murders that brought unwanted federal attention. The bosses wanted them dead.  According to Calabrese, the Spilotro's were picked up by James Marcello, considered by some to be the Boss of the Outfit in 2000 and were driven to a house in the Bensenville suburbs. Tony Spilotro thought he was supposed to get a promotion and that Michael Spilotro was to become a made member. When they got to the house, they were taken to the basement for the ceremony, and Marcello, Calabrese, and four other men beat them to death.
   Gangster John Fecarotta was assigned to bury the bodies. The problem was the bodies were found only a week after they left Michael Spilotro’s Oak Park home on June 14, 1986. A farmer found their badly beaten bodies in a makeshift grave in an Indiana cornfield, because the ground was freshly overturned. Suspecting poachers had killed and then buried a deer on the spot he turned the ground over and found the Spilotro brothers.  Oddly enough, had Fecarotta buried the bodies in an adjacent wooded area just 30 feet from the cornfield, they might never have been found.
    The most bizarre part of the murder plot was the mob's plan to feed phony information to the FBI that Spilotro and his brother were alive and living in Italy. They intended to plant the brothers' clothing or other personal items in hotel rooms to indicate they had been there but had fled hurriedly. When the brothers' bodies were found they were wearing only underwear. The discovery of the bodies ended the plan and cost Fecarotta his life.
   Fecarotta was set up on the ruse that he and other mobsters were going to drop off a bomb which Nick Calabrese, working on orders from his brother and crew chief Jimmy LaPietra, (LaPietra died in 1999 of natural causes after serving 11 years in a federal prison for skimming money from a Las Vegas casino.)
   When Fecarotta climbed into the stolen Buick at about 7:00 PM that Sunday night, Nick Calabrese showed him the so-called bomb they were going to use on the victim which was actually a bunch of flares tied to together with tape made to look vaguely like dynamite.  
  As they pulled up near a bingo hall on West Belmont, just before 8:00 PM, Calabrese pulled his gun to kill Fecarotta. But Fecarotta fought him off, struggling with Calabrese until the gun went off, wounding Calabrese in the forearm. Fecarotta ran for his life down a nearby alley, and Nick Calabrese bolted after him, knowing if Fecarotta escaped, it would mean his own death sentence from the mob. Calabrese caught up with him and
grabbed him by the neck and put a final bullet into the back of his head as he stood in the doorway of Brown's Banquets Inc., a bingo hall at 6050 W. Belmont Ave.
   Calabrese’s error was that he left behind a bloody glove, which investigators recovered and kept. Years later, DNA tests tied Nick Calabrese to the glove and the murder. Faced with the facts, he became a federal witness.

Ferriola Joseph, Chicago mob boss. Born 1928 Died March 11, 1989. AKA Joe Nagall, AKA Joe Nagaul AKA Oscar.  Ferriola was the boss of the Taylor Street Crew and ruled over large parts of Chicago, virtually all of Cicero and Lake County, Illinois which was run by the equally merciless Salvatore “Solly D” DeLaurentis.  In the early 1970's, Ferriola served a Federal prison term for taking part in a multimillion-dollar nationwide gambling syndicate. In 1986, he took over the Chicago Outfit after Joey Aiuppa and his underboss Jackie Cerone, went to prison in relation to the Las Vegas gambling mess that nearly brought down all the Midwest mobs. 
   The first thing Ferriola did as boss was to increase the street tax that gamblers paid to the mob, from $1,000 a month to about $2,000 a month, on average. Ferriola told Bill Jahoda "Things are coming apart in Chicago and something has to be done about it." Among his complaints were that bookies were holding back because they believed that the graying leadership lacked the drive to get tough. Ferriola, although not yet technically the boss, changed all that. In quick succession, he ordered the murder of Lenny Yaras, Hal Smith and Chuckie English. Each was gunned down on the streets of Chicago.
Ferriola also signed off on the murders of Spilotro brothers who had simply gone to wild for their own good. Ferriola ordered them back to Chicago where they were beaten to death.
 Although it’s never been confirmed, the gravely ill Ferriola was supposed to have held on to power in the mob until just before his death in order to avoid infighting and a disruption in business, especially gambling which thrived under Ferriola’s rule to the tune of $127 million dollars. Ferriola eventually relinquished power to Ernest Rocco Infelice and named himself consigliere. But, said Mob informant and cocaine abuser Bill Jahoda "Until the day he died, many in law enforcement thought Ferriola was still the mob's top man,"  Ferriola died after his second heart transplant over a several week period by noted heart specialist Dr. Michael DeBakey.

Frabotta, Albert AKA Obie  Born 1911 died November 23 1982. Heart attack. 3950 North Lake Shore Drive. An orginal member of the 42 gang, he was a burglar and common thief by trade. He was suspected in at least six murders and was arrested 42 times for a variety of crimes including extortion. He was  later a power along Rush Street where he enjoyed being pointed out by passerby’s as a real gangster as he pitched pennies on the sidewalk. Frabotta played the role of bad guy to the hilt, dressing flashy clothes and driving large, brightly painted cars.  In 1967 he was mugged as he walked his dog, a  toy poodle named suzy, through Lincoln Park. Frabotta, who was badly beaten in the robbery, later joined police in searching for the dog. Frabotta called the mugging “an unnerving experience”  Frabotta was aid to have lasted as long as he did in the Mafia because he played the inside political angles the right way, always siding with the potential winner. 

Ferrara Brothers: 1023 South Seley Ave. Edward and Phillip. Both members of the 42 gang in 1933 when they were shot by a home owner who discovered them breaking into his garage.   




[1] Chicago Tribune, September 21, 1986 POLICE SAY MOBSTER TRUSTED HIS KILLER John O'Brien and Ronald Koziol.

[2] Chicago Tribune, September 21, 1986 POLICE SAY MOBSTER TRUSTED HIS KILLER John O'Brien and Ronald Koziol.


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