United States Attorney for
the Southern District of New York

Assistant United States Attorney
l00 Church Street, 19th Floor
New York, New York 10007
Tel. No.: (212) 385-6349


ROBERT B. REICH, Secretary of
the United States Department of Labor,


- against -




94 Civ. 6487 (RWS)

RONALD M. FINO, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1746, hereby declares under penalty of perjury as follows:

1. I was, from June, 1973 to February, 1988, the Business Manager for Local 210 in Buffalo, New York of the Laborers' International Union of North America, AFL-CIO (the "Laborers' Union" or "LIUNA"). In that position, and in my capacity as Trustee of LIUNA's Training Fund, a position that I held from the late 1970's until February, 1988, I regularly worked and associated with officials at all levels of LIUNA as well as local, district and regional levels throughout the United States and Canada, including the Mason Tenders District Council of Greater New York (the "Mason Tenders District Council"). I make this declaration based upon personal knowledge of the information set forth below.



2. I was born on June 1, 1946 at Buffalo, New York. Until approximately January, 1989, I resided at 81 Clark Court, Elma, New York. Since that time, I have lived in a concealed location under the protection of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Because I have provided information and evidence about the activities of various persons associated with the La Cosa Nostra ("LCN") to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Department of Justice, and before various United States District Courts, I fear that if my present whereabouts were revealed I would be in danger of being murdered or seriously harmed.

3. When I was a child, I became aware of the LCN in the mid-1950s during the times I visited my father, Joseph Fino, when he was incarcerated in the New York State prison at Attica, New York. During that time my family was very poor. Through conversations with my mother and my father, I learned that the LCN had not been fulfilling its promise to provide sufficient financial support to take care of our family while my father was in prison. After my father was released from prison, I became very close to him and remained very close to him until his death in 1984. Through many conversations with my mother, I learned that my father had been a member in the Buffalo family of the LCN since the 1940s, and had participated in the murder of a man who had been dating the wife of Danny Sansanese Jr., who, according to my father, was a member of the LCN. My father and my uncle,


Nicholas Fino, later confirmed my mother's statements. My Uncle Nicholas bad also admitted to me that he was a member of the Buffalo LCN family, and my father confirmed my uncle's statements. During my teenage years, I read news articles which identified my father, my uncle, Nicholas Fino, and my father's close friend, Danny Sansanese Sr. as members of, or enforcers for, the mob. The accuracy of these articles was confirmed through hearing general conversation among my uncle, my father, and his friends and through direct conversations which I had with my father and my uncle.

4. During the late 1950's and through the 1960's my father's main activity was the operation of a large bookmaking business. During this period, my father told me that he was a "capo" or captain in the Buffalo LCN family. He told me that this meant that he supervised LCN members called "soldiers", a group of which, he called a "crew". Some members of the crew of which my father was capo were Salvatore Bonito, also known as ""George Raft," and Billy Sciolino. Both of these men are now deceased. I often accompanied my father to various locations and listened as my father and his associates discussed their LCN business in my presence.

5. In my young adult life, I worked in my father's bookmaking business and was often present when employees of that business delivered large amounts of money from the operations of the bookmaking business to my father. In the late 1960's I became aware, from conversations with my father, that there was a


move by a majority of the membership of the Buffalo LCN family to dismantle the leadership empire that had been created by Stefano Maggadino, and rested with other members of his personal family. My father was named to be the acting boss of this group and, therefore, of the majority of the membership of the Buffalo LCN family.

6. In 1975, I became very close to a man named Sam Pieri who I knew from my associations with my father and his friends to be a "capo" in the LCN. During this time, Sam Pieri was a significant power within the LCN and he, and others, offered to sponsor me to "be made," that is, to be inducted into membership in the Buffalo family of the LCN. I declined Pieri's offer because I did not wish to participate, as a member, in the activities of the Buffalo LCN family and because of my family's experiences with the LCN. Shortly after Pieri made his offer, I told my father about what Pieri had said and my father told me that I should do nothing and he would take care of it. Because of my father's position as a capo and later as acting boss of the Buffalo LCN family, and because of my many associations with numerous members of the LCN over the years, I was well accepted by LCN members in both the Buffalo family and in LCN families in various other parts of the United States. From these associations and experiences, I have become familiar with the manner in which LCN families conduct their affairs, operate their legitimate and illegitimate businesses, and relate to one another.



7. I first learned that Gaspar Lupo, who was the President of the Mason Tenders District Council of New York City, was a member of the Genovese Organized Crime Family of the LCN when Sam Pieri told me that Gaspar Lupo was "with" the Genovese family. Later my understanding that Gaspar Lupo was a member of the Genovese family was confirmed when I saw that he was treated with a great respect by people who I knew to be LCN members, and when Gaspar Lupo delivered messages to me regarding LCN instructions as to how I was to conduct myself as a LIUNA official.

8. In 1986, I attended the National Convention of the Laborers' Union at the Fountainbleau Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida. Prior to that convention, I had become involved in investing pension fund moneys in real estate. During the 1986 Laborers' Union convention, Gaspar Lupo told me that the Mason Tenders District Council had approximately $150,000,000 in Pension fund money and that he wished to use the money to invest in real estate. Gaspar Lupo told me to discuss my experience in real estate investment with his son, Frank Lupo. During my discussions with Frank Lupo, I told Frank Lupo about my experience with obtaining appraisals and with writing provisions, called "kickers," into loan agreements to justify low rates of interest given to borrowers who had been recommended by the Buffalo LCN family. Frank Lupo questioned me closely about the use of appraisals and "kickers," and I later discussed these


matters with Gaspar Lupo. During my discussions with Gaspar and Frank Lupo, their questions of me indicated that they were very interested in how they would be able to get money out of the pension fund.


9. After I left my position as Business Manager of Local 210, in about April 1988, I became involved in a business called Hazardous Waste Management (hereafter "HWM"), which I owned along with my brother. I was instructed by the Buffalo LCN family, through Victor Sansanese, that I was to hire Ron Cardinale, who was the son of Sam Cardinale, a member of the Buffalo LCN family. In October, 1988, I was contacted by a man named Carl Mastykarz who told me that he could obtain business relating to asbestos removal from buildings for HWM through a man named Lo Lou Casciano in New York City. I had known Mastykarz when he was working for a bank in Buffalo where he handled accounts for members of the Buffalo LCN Family. Mastykarz arranged a meeting with Casciano at the Grand Hyatt Hotel. Prior to the meeting, Victor Sansanese instructed me to take Ron Cardinale along because the Buffalo LCN family needed a well connected LCN associate to be involved in the effort to obtain hazardous waste removal business in New York.

10. I attended a meeting on October 13, 1988 with Lou Casciano along with Ron Cardinale and Carl Mastykarz at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Manhattan. At that meeting, Mastykarz identified Casciano as an employee of the Mason Tenders District Council.


Lou Casciano told me that asbestos removal in New York City was controlled by the Mason Tenders District Council and that no asbestos removal companies could do business there without their approval. After discussing the proposal, Casciano told me that the prices were good but that before a decision could be made, "your people will have to contact my people to get approval." From my experience in having dealt with many LCN bosses, I knew that he was telling me that his LCN superiors would have to contact my LCN superiors before we could do business together.

11. On October 31, 1988, I again traveled to New York City where I met with Carl Mastykarz and Lou Casciano at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Manhattan. Casciano told me that he had checked me out with "his people" and that he had secured approval to steer asbestos removal contracts to HWM in exchange for a kickback of $25,000.00 plus $5,000 per month and 50% of the profits for each contract HWM is awarded. During this meeting, Casciano informed me that he was a delegate from Gaspar Lupo, the President of the Mason Tenders District Council in New York City, and that Lupo would be getting a share of the money HWM paid. I resisted these amounts and Casciano ultimately agreed to accept $15,000 up front, $3,000 per month and 50% of the profits from each contract. Casciano said that the manner in which the payments would be made was to show false rentals of equipment from a company to be designated by Casciano. Casciano also told me that he would take care of any union problems I would


encounter and would provide all the contracts and laborers needed for the jobs.

12. On November 5, 1988, I was visited at HWM in Buffalo, New York by Carl Mastykarz. During this meeting, Mastykarz informed me that the deal between HWM and Casciano was subject to approval by a LCN member named "Jimmy," who I later learned to be James Messera, a member of the Genovese Organized Crime Family, whom I understood was part of the hierarchy of the Genovese Family.

13. On November 10, 1988, my associate, Don Larder, Carl Mastykarz and I met with Lou Casciano at the Frontier Coffee Shop 3rd Avenue and 39th street in New York and Casciano told me that I was well accepted because of my relationship with Joe Todaro Jr., a members of the Buffalo LCN family and an official of Laborers' Local 210. Casciano told me that HWM would get a contract with a company called Zeckendorf who was doing a job on Park Avenue near 14th street in New York. Casciano told me that we would have no Laborers' Union problems on the asbestos removal even if we decided to use non-union labor. Casciano told me that, in the event HWM opted to use non-union workers, "Jimmy" would handle any potential union problems relating to the Mason Tenders and that any problems which "Jimmy" could not handle would be handled by "The Chin." Casciano told me that the man he called "The Chin" and "The Robe" was the boss of the LCN family with which he was associated. I understood that "Jimmy" was James Messera. At the end of the meeting Casciano requested that


we meet again with Richard Kelly, head of the Mason Tenders Asbestos Removal Training Program, to discuss how contracts for HWM would be handled. Casciano informed me that Kelly would be getting a percentage of the kickbacks under our arrangement.

14. On November 16, 1988, I met with Lou Casciano and Richard Kelly along with Carl Mastykarz at the Frontier Coffee Shop. Casciano and Kelly described the magnitude of the contracts that HWM could obtain once I associated with them, including asbestos and hazardous waste removal work in the New York City area and in New Jersey. The New Jersey work would be in collaboration with John Riggi, who controlled the Laborer's Union there. Casciano also told me that later in the day, I would meet with a representative of the Zeckendorf Construction Company in connection with an asbestos removal job. Casciano and Kelly said that 10% of the total amount of the contract would be kicked back to this person. Casciano also told me that Casciano would form a fictitious company which would be used as the vehicle to obtain the payments from HWM as they had done in the past with other contractors. Casciano and Kelly also spoke of the practise of commonly employing no-show workers and stewards to generate cash for kickbacks. During the conversation Casciano and Kelly informed me that the job I would get would be at the Mays Department Store at 14th Street and Park Avenue in New York City.

15. On November 16, 1988, after the meeting with Casciano and Kelly at the Frontier Coffee Shop, Casciano, Kelly,


Mastykarz and myself walked to the offices of the Mason Tenders District Council on 37th Street in order to see Gaspar Lupo. Gaspar Lupo, however, wasn't in the office so we left. We then met at a restaurant with a man named "Pat" who was introduced to me as a person representing Zeckendorf and Pat's friend "Donnie." Pat, Richard Kelly and I discussed the pricing for the asbestos removal job at May Department Store and Pat agreed that the prices were in line and that the contract could be awarded to HWM. Pat openly discussed the fact that he was going to receive 10% of the contract price as a kickback on the deal, which Pat said he'd have to share with persons at Zeckendorf.

16. On December 1, 1988, I made another trip to New York City from Buffalo. After I arrived in New York, I proceeded to the Frontier Coffee Shop where I met Carl Mastykarz. After some time, Richard Kelly arrived at the coffee shop. Kelly told me that Zeckendorf was not yet ready to bid the May Department Store job, but would be soon. Casciano then joined us and said that he could guarantee us the Mays Department Store job. I then met Al Soussi, who was introduced to me as an employee of the Mason Tenders District Council Trust Funds. As we departed the coffee shop, Casciano told me in private that we could talk in front of Kelly and Soussi because "they're o.k."

17. On December 1, 1988, after we left the coffee shop, Casciano, Kelly, Soussi, Mastykarz and I went to the offices of the Mason Tenders District Council on 37th Street. Gaspar Lupo was not in. Kelly called someone at Zeckendorf with


whom he had a connection to enquire about the May Department Store job. Kelly also requested from me the telephone number of Joseph Facenelli who was going to do hauling jobs for our enterprise. After a few other telephone calls I left the offices of the Mason Tenders District Council.

18. On December 20, 1988, I again visited the Frontier Coffee Shop and met with Lou Casciano, Al Soussi, Richard Kelly and Carl Mastykarz. Kelly stated that he was going to call "Pat" about the May Department Store job. At one point, Casciano asked Carl Mastykarz and Richard Kelly to excuse themselves. Lou Casciano then asked me, "can you speak on your own behalf?" I responded that I had to answer to the people in Buffalo. Casciano said, "we speak for ourselves." From my experience with the LCN, I took this to mean that they were telling me that they were "made" LCN members. After Kelly and Mastykarz returned to the table, Casciano told me that they had to "take it easy" getting jobs for HWM because as officials of the Mason Tenders District Council and the Trust Funds, they were wary of appearing to be publicly associated with HWM.

19. I met again with Casciano and Soussi on December 29, 1988 at the Frontier Coffee Shop, at which time I gave $3,000 in cash to Casciano in an envelope. Casciano told me that Richard Kelly was obtaining confidential bid numbers on the May Department Store job.

20. At various times during my meetings with Richard Kelly during November and December 1988, he talked about the 50%


profit of HWM that I had promised to pay Casciano as a kickback. Kelly also stated that non-union workers from New Jersey were available to work on HWM projects and the he would take care of any licensing requirements. Kelly also had frequent conversations with his contacts at Zeckendorf in order to obtain bid information for our scheme so that we could low-bid the job.

21. Because I began to feel that I was in danger, I left Buffalo in January, 1989, and ceased my dealings with Casciano, Soussi, Kelly and Mastykarz. In February, 1989, I agreed to testify in public for the government, and publicly acknowledge that I had been giving information to the federal government regarding the activities of the LCN and the Laborers' Union since shortly after the time I became Business Manager of Local 210 in June, 1973.

Executed on: October 11, 1994

New York, New York




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