Five Families of Organized Crime

New York's Five Families

The Five Families of New York City organized crime include the Genovese Crime Family, the Gambino Crime Family, the Bonnano Crime Family, the Colombo Family, and the Lucchese Crime Family. The DeCavalcante Family of New Jersey, although a small borgata, is also included under this Five Families umbrella.

The bosses of these six crime families as well as other mob bosses throughout the country were part of what is known as The Commission. The Commission” as we know it - a blended underworld of all Italian factions from mainland Italy as well as Sicily — came into existence in 1931.

Changing the rules to absorb other purebred Italians of Calabrian, Neapolitan, and other mainland Italians into their ranks, the Families were now one cohesive monolithic brotherhood, renamed — “Cosa Nostra” or “Our Thing”.

Here you'll find in-depth biographies and stories about well-known and little-known members and associates of all Five Families of New York City as well as the DeCavalcantes of New Jersey.

The Genovese Family

The Gambino Family

Carlo Gambino

Carlo Gambino was arguably the most powerful boss of the Five New York Crime Families. Quiet and unassuming, he was a force to be reckoned with.

The Bonanno Family

Paul Sciacca

Paul Sciacca was a low-profile Bonanno mafioso who was catapulted to acting boss during the Family's volatile Banana War years.

Carmine Galante

Carmine Galante was one of the most powerful and feared of the Mafia bosses until he met his fate during a Bonanno power struggle.

Michael Adamo

Michael Adamo was once acting underboss of the Bonnano Family until he wasn't anymore because of an internal Family conflict.

The Colombo Family

Joe Profaci

Joe Profaci was a Colombo Faimly boss who was one of the most business savvy and powerful Mafia members ever in the entire United States.

The Lucchese Family

Tommy Lucchese

Tommy Lucchese was beloved by the rank and file of the Lucchese Family but had a reputation as a master corrupter and political “fixer.”

The DeCavalcante Family

YOUTUBE Videos - The Five Families

After New Jersey boss Sam the Plumber DeCavalcante was convicted on federal gambling charges, he tapped John Riggi to act in his stead. Riggi helmed the DeCavalcante Family ship for nearly 35 years even while Gambino boss John Gotti sought to sink it.

Rusty Rastelli was the one-time mafia boss of the Bonanno Crime Family. Originally hailing from the gritty Greenpoint section of North Brooklyn, Rastelli would rise up from a common street hoodlum and gunman to eventually reach the very pinnacle of organized crime in New York City.

Ettore Zappi was a longtime capo and close friend and associate of Gambino Family boss Carlo Gambino. Zappi was involved in many mob rackets including labor unions, rib joints, drive-in movie theaters, and more.

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