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Seven From Westchester Among 12 Gambino Crime Family Members Charged By Feds

Members of the Gambino Crime Family from Westchester were charged in Federal Court in Brooklyn.
Members of the Gambino Crime Family from Westchester were charged in Federal Court in Brooklyn. Photo Credit: File

Seven Westchester residents are among 12 alleged members of the Gambino Crime Family facing charges for a host of crimes that includes racketeering conspiracy, bribery, loansharking, fraud, obstruction of justice and other offenses.

Federal officials charged Andrew Campos, an alleged captain in the Gambino organized crime family of La Cosa Nostra; James Ciaccia, George Campos, Vincent Fiore, and Richard Martino, alleged Gambino family soldiers; and Renato Barca, Jr., Benito DiZenzo, Mark Kocaj, Frank Tarul, and Michael Tarul, alleged Gambino family associates for alleged crimes dating back to 2013.

Eleven of the 12 charged suspects were arraigned on Thursday, Dec. 5 in Brooklyn federal court. One remains a fugitive.

Those charged were:

  • Renato Barco, Jr., 32, of the Bronx;
  • Andrew Campos, 50, of Scarsdale;
  • George Campos, 72, of Peekskill;
  • James Ciaccia, 51, of the Bronx;
  • Benito DiZenzo, 53, of New Rochelle;
  • Vincent Fiore, 57, of Briarcliff;
  • Mark Kocaj, 49, of Tuckahoe;
  • Richard Martino, 60, of Rye;
  • John Simonlacaj, 50, of Scarsdale;
  • Frank Tarul, 45, of the Bronx;
  • Michael Tarul, 43, of the Bronx;
  • Adrial Lopez, 56, of the Bronx. 

It is alleged that Andrew Campos, Fiore, Kocaj and DiZenzo operated CWC Contracting, and paid bribes and kickbacks to employees of multiple construction companies and real estate developments. In exchange, those employees took steps to benefit CWC, including awarding contracts and approving change orders to add or delete from the original scope of a contract.

That scheme led to the men making hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of free labor and materials.

In 2005, federal officials noted that Campos and Marino were convicted for their role in a “massive scheme to defraud users of adult entertainment services.” Martino was ultimately sentenced to 108 months’ imprisonment and ordered by the court to forfeit $9.1 million. 

It is alleged that following his release from prison, Martino, Frank Tarul and others, concealed Martino’s wealth and income, falsely reporting that he had limited assets and worked for Tarul’s flooring company.  Instead, it was determined that Martino allegedly operated multiple companies that earned millions of dollars, including construction work, investments in pizzerias and other business ventures.

The men charged also allegedly were involved in loansharking and extortion in order to collect cash from victims. Kocaj and Lopez, a former professional boxer, are charged with loansharking, including Kocaj’s recovery of tens of thousands of dollars of a gambling debt on behalf of an Albanian organized crime figure

Kocaj allegedly bragged about his ability to violently collect money, stating that he could send “a couple of my Albanian guys” and have somebody “grab (a potential victim) by the (expletive deleted) neck.”  

Kocaj allegedly helped collect over $30,000, threatening that if the victim did not pay, “he’s going to get his head split open. . . .  These are not the guys to (expletive deleted) around with. ... These Albanians, you know what they’ll do.” 

At the time of his arrest, police recovered $25,000 in cash, brass knuckles and several large knives from Kocaj.

Other charges include retaliation against grand jury witnesses, money laundering, illegally obtaining cards from the United States Department of Labor for training courses that were never completed, defrauding the government and overbilling clients with inflated work orders.

The outstanding investigative work by this Office’s prosecutors and our law enforcement partners uncovered a litany of crimes allegedly committed by members and associates of the Gambino organized crime family, who still don’t get it – handcuffs and a jail cell are waiting for criminals who threaten violence and commit fraud, money laundering and bribery in furtherance of their enterprise,” United States Attorney Richard Donoghue said.

“The Gambino members arrested in this case ran the gamut of criminal activity. Everything from the usual thuggish behavior of beating people up, forcing people to take the fall for their crimes, all the way to defrauding the federal government,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge William Sweeney. “Several suspects even went to prison, were released, and allegedly went right back to breaking the law. At some point, these crime families should realize we see what they're doing, and their actions are going to lead them right back to the same prison cells.”

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