By Scott M. Deitche
Cigar City Mafia: A Complete History of the Tampa Underworld and The Silent Don: The World of Santo Trafficante Jr. He also has written dozens of articles on organized crime for national magazines and newspapers. Deitche has been featured on The Discovery Channel, The History Channel, A&E, C-SPAN and national news and radio shows. Deitche writes blogs for The Mob Museum on a regular basis.
One-time boss of the Colombo crime family, Gennaro “Gerry Lang” Langella, died on December 15, 2013, in Springfield, Missouri, at MCFP Springfield (Medical Center for Federal Prisoners).
Langella was born in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, in 1938. He rose through the ranks of the Colombo crime family due, in part, to his friendship with Carmie “The Snake” Persico. Langella became the acting boss of the family when Persico was in prison in the early 1980s. In 1982, the FBI planted a bug in Langella’s favorite restaurant and meeting place, Casa Storta in Brooklyn. Through the bug they uncovered the first clues that the New York Mafia was controlling the concrete industry in the City.
Gerry Lang’s time in the top spot didn’t last long. He was indicted in 1984 along with Persico and other members of the Colombo family, and then again a year later as part of the famous Commission case. The Commission case, which also helped launch Rudy Giuliani’s career as a prosecutor, proved the existence of the Commission- the Mafia’s board of directors that handled disputes and discussed business.
Like the other mob bosses in the Commission case, Langella was found guilty. He was sentenced to 100 years in prison.