United Press International

Feds Investigate Payoff Charges in Accardo Racketeering Trial

DATELINE: MIAMI July 11, 1982

FBI agents are reportedly investigating charges a federal juror was paid $200,000 to vote for the acquittal of reputed Chicago mob leader Anthony "Big Tuna" Accardo and two co defendants in a labor racketeering trial.

Agents in Miami and Washington began the probe last month when two informants with close ties to the Laborers International Union told them a man on the jury was bribed, the Miami Herald reported in its early Monday edition.

The informants reportedly said the man was paid to vote for the acquittal of Accardo, Laborers International Union president Angelo Fosco and former union official Terrence O'Sullivan.

All three were acquitted last month by a Miami federal jury of labor racketeeering charges. Another eight co-defendants in the case were found guilty of conspiring to bilk the Laborers union of $2 million in an insurance kickback scheme.

The allegations of bribery prompted Stanley Marcus, the U.S. Attorney for south Florida, to notify U.S. District Judge C. Clyde Atkins of the investigation July 1, said the newspaper, quoting unnamed courthouse sources.

Marcus and other Justice Department officials refused to comment on the investigation.

Attorneys for Fosco, Accardo and O'Sullivan called the allegations "outrageous," "a bunch of nonsense" and unworthy of comment. "This is the first I've heard of such allegations," said Carl Walsh, a Chicago lawyer who represents Accardo. "It has no foundation. The verdict just shows there was a total lack of evidence against my client."

The FBI informants alleged organized crime figures from New England paid the bribe with the understanding the juror would push for acquittal of Accardo, Fosco, O'Sullivan, and south Florida union officials John Giardiello and Salvatore Tricario, said the newspaper.

One man on the jury held out for the acquittal of Giardiello and Tricario during 3 weeks of jury deliberation, said several jurors. The jurors said the man also voted for the acquittal of Accardo, Fosco and O'Sullivan along with other jurors.

The investigation is the second into allegations a defendant in the labor racketeering case offered bribes.

FBI agents last year began an investigation that reputed Florida mob boss Santo Trafficante Jr. offered to pay U.S. District Judge Alcee Hastings to dismiss the charges brought against him in the case.

Trafficante has been granted a request to receive a separate trial on the labor racketeering charges because he is in ill health.

Judge Hastings and long-time friend William Borders Jr. later were indicted on bribery conspiracy charges unrelated to the labor racketeering trial. Borders was convicted while Hastings is fighting his indictment with appeals.

Federal investigators, meanwhile, are continuing their investigation into the allegation Trafficante offered Hastings a bribe and have notified Trafficante they plan to subpoena him to appear before a federal grand jury.

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