Three reputed Chicago mobsters, two with ties to a legendary London jewel heist, were arrested again this week--allegedly as they attempted to rob the home of the late mob boss Angelo "The Hook" LaPietra.
The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Joseph "Jerry The Monk" Scalise, 73, of Clarendon Hills; Art Rachel, 71, of Chicago -- both charged in the 1980 Marlborough Diamond theft -- and Robert Pullia, 69, of Plainfield, were all charged with planning to rob LaPietra's home. The paper reports that the three men were expected to appear in federal court in Chicago Friday afternoon.
Scalise served a lengthy prison sentence following a 1980 daytime jewelry store robbery in London, where nearly 4 million dollars in jewels were taken, NBC Chicago reports. Scalise and Rachel were arrested, but the diamond, valued at nearly a million dollars, has never been recovered. (Scroll down for old news coverage of the jewelry heist.)
The Sun-Times reports that Scalise, Rachel and Pullia were suspects in a 2007 "armed take-over robbery" at a LaGrange bank, and that Scalise was implicated but never charged in the Family Secrets case with the 1980 murder of mob hitman William Dauber and his wife, Charlotte. From the Sun-Times story:
The FBI has been secretly recording Scalise's conversations and allegedly caught him recently speaking about killing a cooperating witness in the Family Secrets trial.
"We got to spare some time [and] a bullet for that f------ piece of s---," Scalise is quoted as saying about the witness.
The men were arrested Thursday night, after they allegedly drilled holes in the mortar and taken other steps to rob the home, where they believed cash was stored, the Sun-Times reports.
Scalise was hired as a consultant by director Michael Mann for the Johnny Depp film, "Public Enemies," according to NBC Chicago. Mann told the LA Times he wanted to know what it was like inside a robber's psyche.
"Jerry is an armed robber," Mann said. "He once stole the Marlboro Diamond which was as big as a grapefruit! He's a real Chicago guy."
Watch news coverage from the 1980 robbery here: