United Press International

Implicate Two in Labor killing

DATELINE:MIAMI September 15, 1982

An FBI agent has implicated two Fort Lauderdale men, convicted in a federal labor racketeering case, in the 1972 killing of a popular black Miami labor leader.

FBI agent James Wagener testified in federal court Tuesday that an FBI informant told him that John Giardiello and Salvatore Tricario were involved in the ambush slaying 10 years ago of Joseph Caleb, head of the south Florida local of Laborers International Union.

Wagener's testimony came at a sentencing hearing for eight union leaders and businessmen convicted in June of labor racketeering charges. They were accuse of engaging in a kickback scheme that bilked the welfare and insurance funds of the Chicago-based Laborer's union of an estimated $2 million.

U.S. District Judge James Kehoe sentenced Giardiello and Tricario to 12 years in prison. Giardiello was president and Tricario was recording secretary of Palm Beach local 767 of the Laborer's union.

Wagener testified that Giardiello and Tricario were implicated in the Caleb murder by Daniel Milano Jr., an informant and key government witness at the racketeering trial. Milano said Giardiello told him he and Tricario "took care of a black union leader (Caleb) who was giving (Bernard) Rubin problems," Wagener testified.

Rubin, president of the South Florida Laborers Council, was one of the eight convicted. Kehoe sentenced him to eight years in prison.

According to Milano, Giardiello said, "they shouldn't have shot the nigger. They should have killed Rubin instead," Wagener said.

The FBI failed to investigate Caleb's slaying any further because the murder was not a federal crime, Wagener said. A spokesman for Metro-Dade police in Miami said the case was cleared in 1976 when a suspect named John Bennett died.

Others sentenced Tuesday were: Alfred Pilotto, 72, president of a Laborers Chicago local, who received the maximum of 20 years to begin immediately; James Corporale, 61, secretary-treasurer of Chicago Laborers Local 5, 12 years; George Waugneux, 49, a Hallandale, Fla., builder to seven years concurrent with two other sentences that total 16 years; Seymour Gopman, 57, North Miami Beach labor lawyer, to five years and four months, and Louis Ostrer, 59, insurance company owner to seven years in prison concurrent with other sentences on mail and securities fraud convictions.

Three other defendants, including reputed Chicago mob leader Anthony Accardo, were acquitted in June. Five others, including Tampa, Fla., organized crime figure Santo Trafficante, still must be tried. Trafficante's case has been postponed indefinitely because of his ailing health.

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