A reputed Gambino crime family capo pleaded guilty last week to running a $10 million sports gambling operation in Woodhaven and Costa Rica, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.
Nicholas aka "Little Nicky" Corozzo, 68, of 2340 Legion St., in Bellmore, L.I., was one of 62 reputed Gambino members named in a federal indictment and charged with racketeering, conspiracy, loan sharking and embezzlement.
His guilty plea stems from a separate state indictment that charged 25 other reputed Gambino members. The former case is still pending.
Corozzo pleaded guilty July 30 to enterprise corruption in the illegal gambling case before Queens Supreme Court Justice Barry Kron, who set bail at $1 million and said Corozzo was likely to face a sentence of five to 15 years in prison, Brown said. His next court date is scheduled for Dec. 1.
"As a result of this prosecution, we have closed down a highly lucrative gambling operation that benefitted the Gambino crime family to the tune of millions of dollars each year," Brown said in a statement.
"Illegal gambling has always been the bread and butter moneymaker for organized crime because of the huge profits that it generates, which can then be used to fund other, more insidious forms of criminal activity, such as labor racketeering, drug trafficking, prostitution, auto theft, insurance fraud and loan sharking," Brown said.
"This case sends a clear signal to all who involve themselves in illegal gambling that law enforcement will keep up the pressure and not allow them to operate," he said.
Brown said Corozzo was involved in promoting illegal sports betting in Queens through traditional gambling wire rooms in Woodhaven. The reputed mobster also was in charge of non-traditional, computerized wiring rooms based in Costa Rica, the DA said.
Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at hkoplowitz
©2008 Community News Group
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