NEW YORK (AP) — A mobster involved in a legendary heist retold in the film "Goodfellas" has told a jury he became an informant because he was broke.

Gaspare Valenti testified in federal court Wednesday in New York City that he approached the FBI in 2008, and was paid to wear a wire and record conversations with Vincent Asaro.

Asaro is on trial in the $6 million Lufthansa robbery at Kennedy Airport in 1978.

The 68-year-old Valenti testified he had a gambling problem that put him in deep debt. He says his money issues angered Asaro, his cousin and former captain in the Bonanno organized crime family.

Valenti emerged as a key witness after Asaro was arrested last year. The defense says Valenti and others are framing Asaro to save themselves from prison terms.