In a one-two punch, federal prosecutors hit the Bonanno crime family in New York and South Florida within 24 hours, implicating one of its top underbosses and reaffirming that the Mafia appears to be doing big business in the Sunshine State.
While authorities in New York focused on violent crimes allegedly perpetrated by the Bonannos _ including the blowtorching of one man who ran afoul of the family _ the South Florida indictment outlined a massive "boiler room" operation run out of Boca Raton, Delray Beach and Margate.
Under the direction of the family's reputed No. 3 man, Anthony Graziano, the boiler rooms bilked hundreds of victims nationwide of $11.7-million under the guise of investing in foreign exchange markets, according to FBI.
The 63-count indictment returned by a Fort Lauderdale grand jury names 29 defendants and also details more traditional mob activities, such as gambling, money laundering and loan sharking.
_ Ledger and wire reports