|The BBC in Britain has revealed what the FBI in Washington, D.C., has revealed about the decrease in membership in organized crime amongst the known metropolitan area organized crime “families.” In the surveillance year that ended in January of this year, membership in the Mafia fell from 634 to 570, a decline of 10%. As would any other business that is rather labor intensive, the New York Mafia is now on a recruitment drive. Reliable sources told the New York Post newspaper that the Genovese and Lucchese families are initiating new members; some newcomers may even be coming from outside the Italian-American community, breaking a long tradition of tribe-only membership so well documented in Mafia stories. |
The recruitment drive has been confirmed by an informer from the Genovese Family. “Cookie” Dursi reported that new recruits would go through customary initiation rites, such as each burning the picture of a Catholic saint in the palm of his hand, which will have already been cut by a knife and bleeding. Each recruit will also take the “omerta,” a secrecy vow that, unlike Dursi, they will never reveal other members of the crime families or anything about their businesses.
The 10% decline in Mafia membership came about due to deaths (natural and otherwise), defection to the law, and incarcerations due to legal actions. Undercover operations by the law made a significant impact on this statistic, but Mafia members turning “rat” also damaged the crime industry that still controls three of New York’s biggest rackets -- drugs, extortion (“protection”), and illegal gambling.