RUBY TELEPHONES JOE ‘THE WOP’ CATALDO

COLOMBO FAMILY MAFIA UNDERBOSS
By A. J. Weberman

JOE COLOMBO WOUNDED IN COLUMBUS CIRCLE
ON COLUMBUS DAY

In 1962 Geraldo (Jerry) Catena, the successor to Vito Genovese in
the New York Mafia, arranged for Louie Jacobs to fund an attempt by Joe
(the Wop) Cataldo – a New York gangster to gain
control of the Finger Lakes track. [Emprise notes,
Sports Illustrated story, 5-29-72] Cataldo owned
Chandler’s Restaurant on East 49
th
Street in Manhattan.
On July 7, 1963, a call was placed from Jack Ruby’s
home telephone to Gloversville, New York. George
Senator, seen on the left with attorney Melvin Belli, a
close associate of Ruby’s during the summer of 1963,
was originally from Gloversville and this led some researchers to believe
that this call was placed by him. When the FBI investigated this call the
Bureau found that the telephone number in Gloversville belonged to Joe
“The Wop” Cataldo, who the Bureau described as “a top New York
hoodlum.” The Warren Commission, however, was more interested in
George Senator and in its report stated: “It is difficult to know with complete
certainty whether Senator had any foreknowledge of the shooting of
Oswald.” A few days before the FBI traced the toll call, FBI informant
number “KY-4003-C-TE” advised that Jack Ruby obtained talent for his
Dallas club through Joe “The Wop” Cataldo during the late 1950’s. The only
acts Cataldo booked were gangsters who would “do a number” on anyone
who did not come with the vigorish on his usurious loans.
On December 11, 1963, Joe Cataldo was exhibited a photograph of
Ruby by the FBI. He denied any relationship at any time with Ruby. In May
1968 Drew Pearson reported on Senator George Smathers Hearings into
loan sharking: “Deputy Inspector Louis C. Cottell of the New York City
Police Department identified New York loan sharks as Salvadore
Bonnanno, Joe Cataldo and Carmine Lombardozzi.” [Nevada Daily Mail
May 13, 1968 – Google News Archives] Joe The Wop’s sons, Joseph Jr,
and Dominik were Mafia members. Little Dom not only was the brother of
Colombo crime family mobster Joseph Cataldo but he was also the in-law
of mob boss Albert Anastasia.
In late 1973 Dominick Cataldo approached Anthony Bruno and
offered $3,000 for New York State Supreme Court Judge William C.
Brennan in a first degree robbery case pending before the appeals court
judge. Bruno went to Brennan who, after looking into the matter, told Bruno
he would accept the $3,000. Cataldo gave the money to Bruno, who gave it
to Brennan. In February 1974 Brennan suppressed identification evidence
linking Cataldo to the robbery, which led to dismissal of the indictment.
After the dismissal, Brennan told Bruno, “[D]on’t let them kid you that they
didn’t need me on this, they did.” [http://openjurist.org/798/f2d/581]
On September 10, 1987 two men walked into a Queens barbershop
and murdered Vito Scaglione, 36 years old, who had ties to organized-
crime figures and was suspected of being involved in narcotics trafficking.
(Ironically “scag” is slang for heroin) Mr. Scaglione was convicted in 1981 in
Federal District Court in Brooklyn on a charge of providing an unlicensed 9-
millimeter semiautomatic pistol and a silencer to an undercover Federal
informer. Mr. Scaglione’s brother-in-law, Dominick Cataldo, who, the
authorities described as an important figure in the Colombo crime family,
was also convicted in the case. After pleading guilty, Mr. Scaglione was
placed on probation. Mr. Cataldo was sentenced to eight years in a Federal
prison.
On February 29, 1980, Joe “the wop” Cataldo, who was described as
a New York City loan shark, was accused of participating in a million dollar
plot to sabotage the “Black Tuna” drug smuggling trial in Miami, Florida.
This alleged plot involved plans to assassinate trial USDC Judge James
Lawrence King, pay off key government witnesses, and otherwise disrupt
the trial. [FBI NY-1639-2396, NY44-974-152; NY 24016-655; NY 44-1639-
1556; 44-1639 4p teletype 11.28.63 Dallas to Albany]

JOHN GOTTI AND DOMINICK CATALDO
In July 1980 Mafia hitman Gerard Pappa was shot to death in
Brooklyn by a Colombo hit squad. It was for revenge of carrying out the
murder of suspected Colombo crime family stool pigeon Ralph Spero. He
was murdered by Dominick Cataldo and his nephew Nicholas and Joseph
Cataldo Jr., the sons of Colombo crime family Mafioso Joseph “the wop”
Cataldo. Knowing how hard Gerard would be to kill, that
he was always armed, very fast and very game, they
were hiding in the luncheonette’s rear kitchen when he
arrived. They approached him from behind and shot him
in the head with a sawed-off shotgun, literally blowing his
head to pieces. He was killed instantly. Sammy Gravano
would later speak of feeling great sadness and remorse
for the lost of his childhood friend. Genovese crime family mob boss
Vincent Gigante was suspected of handing down the murder contract, but
was acquitted of his alleged involvement in the murder in 1997.
In the mid-1980’s Carmine Persico, Hugh McIntosh, Gennaro
Langella, John DeRoss, Anthony Scarpati, Alphonse Persico, Andrew
Russo and Dominic Cataldo were convicted of various offenses arising
from their participation in the affairs of the Colombo Family racketeering
enterprise. All eight appellants were convicted of conspiracy to violate
provisions of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act
(“RICO”), 18 U.S.C. § 1962(d) (1982), and seven of the appellants were
convicted of substantive RICO violations, id. § 1962(c). In addition, the
majority of appellants were convicted of various substantive offenses that
also were charged as predicate racketeering acts. Dominic or “Little Dom”
died in 2003.
The Warren Commission turned a blind eye to Ruby’s Mafia
connections. Ruby was in touch with some of the most notorious gangsters
in America. You just don’t call these guys to shoot the shit.
PAPPA
, .. --. ---::---
F0-302 (Rev • .
:t:DERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGAT

On
.......
12/11/63 ... "'\"";.
Date _______ ___::_-' ___ _ •
ASSOCIATES AND E!-1PLOYEES OF RUBY
1.
Joseph Cataldo, 58 West lDth Street, was
1ntervie'\'1ed December 10, 1963·. A photot:;raph of
Jack Leon Ruby was exhibited to Cataldo. He said
that he had never seen Ruby at any time and had
never heard of him until the day Ruby shot
Lee Harvey Oswald.
He denied any relat1onsh.ip at any time
with Ruby. He po1nted out t hat he does not operate
as a booking agent, although he has in the past
managed small night clubs in the Greem'lich Village
Section of tllanha ttan, Nevr York.
1<'>/J0/63 at . Nel)lk< York
sis ;rrLLINvl w ·' )JtEnR'i\and '
NY 44-97 4 - .
File  
J.'\1-ffiS J .• _,:, \ \__ ).2/11/63
by dictated ------ ---
Thle doeument eontu l na neither recomme ndatlona n or conc hulona o f the F BI . It ia the pro perty of the F Bf and Ia loan e d t o
your aqenc y ; It and Ita contonta are n ot t o be d istr ibut e d ou t•lde your aq.,nc y,

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FBI
.. , .. , Date: 12/11/-63 .
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Transmit the followinQ in --------=-- --=-------,--------....jl
(Type in pl'"" t ext or I
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I I AIR TEL
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(Priori ty or of lloilU.,)
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• ..
TO:
FROM:
SUBJECT:
'
DIRECTOR, FBI (44-24016) . /
q'1l( .. . /
SAC, NIN  
JACK LEON RUBY, aka;
LEE HARVEY OSWALD -
VICTIM
CIVIL RIGHTS .
ReNYtel to the Bureau, 12/6/63,
relationship between JOSEPH CA
-and RUBY. .
Photograph or RUBY was exhibited to JOSEPH
CATALDO, 12/10/63. He denied any personal or business
relationship at any with RUBY.
.follows.

-2 - Dallas (44-1639)
2 - New York
(1-92-1120)
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12/12/63
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Transmit the jn _·_ , _.:.._ ____ __ -;--:----------JII
{T)·pe ia plain te:r;t or eode)
AIRT.EL
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(Priority or Method of 1/ail in')
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'1'0: SAC., DALLAS (44-1639)
FROM:
SUBJECT:
SAC., NEW YORK (44-974)
JACK LEON RUBY aka;
LEE HARVEY ·OSWALD - VICTIM
CR

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ReNYairtel to Bureau and Dallas.,
concerning possible relatioHship between-JOSEPH CATALDO
(New.York top hoodlum) and RUBY. .
-···
Enclosed ror Dallas are 25 copies JJ.t .. FD-302 ..
with JOSEPH ·
._., .. 7
Reference is made to Dallas teletype to
1:45 p.m. and NYtel to the Bureau., 12/3/63., .
"11:Q7   • ., concerning toll calls to and :f'rom telephones
-.llit 'ed to RUBY's home and business.
En_c.losed are 25 copies or an insert reflecting
, credit checks and review of riles or NYO of
persons in telephonic contact with RUBY.
2- Dallas (44-1639){Encl. 50)
'1 - New York {44-974)
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Sent _________ M Per

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