Long Jail Terms for Defendants In Unsuccessful Extortion Plot
PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Former City Councilman Leland Beloff, convicted of conspiring with a reputed organized crime figure in an unsuccessful plot to extort $1 million from a developer, was sentenced today to 10 years in federal prison and fined $150,000.
Nicodemo ″Little Nicky″ Scarfo, found guilty of the same charge in a separate trial, was sentenced to 14 years in and fined $150,000.
Beloff’s chief legislative aide, Robert Rego, was sentenced to eight years and ordered to pay $2,500 restitution to the government.
Beloff, 41, and Rego, 39, resigned their city offices Tuesday as required by Pennsylvania law.
Chief U.S. District Judge John Fullam said Beloff ″committed the worst kind of breach of public trust and attempted to make City Council a branch of the local Mafia.″
Beloff stood before the judge, biting his lip and unsmiling.
A former Pennsylvania state representative defeated in the Democratic primary in May in his bid for a second four-year term, Beloff said in resigning from Council, ″I take many joyous memories with me.″
Scarfo could have been sentenced to a maximum of 40 years, Beloff to 120 years and Rego 100 years.
Scarfo, 59, is charged in Pennsylvania and New Jersey with three counts of murder and also faces another federal trial on accusations that he was a major drug dealer.
Scarfo on Tuesday pleaded innocent with six other people to charges of conspiracy and murder in the 1985 death of mob figure Frank ″Frankie Flowers″ D’Alfonso.
Scarfo, of Atlantic City, N.J., and Fort Lauderdale, Fla., also is charged in the 1984 death of Salvatore Testa, who allegedly was seeking to take over the crime family leadership that Scarfo had inherited after the 1982 assassination of Testa’s father, Philip, and in the 1978 slaying of former Municipal Court Judge Edwin Helfant in New Jersey.