By David Amoruso
The Lucchese Crime Family's New Jersey faction was once among the most powerful in the state. They operated from Bergen County through Essex County, Morris County, Passaic County and Union County, to Sussex County. Their criminal business included illegal gambling, loansharking, drug trafficking, cigarette smuggling, fraud, extortion, and anything else that made a fast buck. In the 1980s the faction was headed by Lucchese capo Anthony "Tumac" Accetturo, and his second in command Michael Taccetta.
Accetturo led a charming mob life until Vittorio Amuso and Anthony Casso became the new leaders of the Luccheses. Amuso and Casso demanded 50% of the New Jersey faction's earnings. Accetturo refused this "proposition." As a result Amuso and Casso labeled Accetturo a rat, stripped him of his capo rank, and put out a murder contract on him and his son Anthony Jr. By now Amuso and Casso had made a name for themselves as crazy killers, so when they summoned the entire Jersey faction to come to New York, only half the crew's members showed up. Once there they decided it was smarter to leave immediately. When they also refused to attend several other meetings Casso and Amuso put out a contract on the entire faction.
Lucchese troops went hunting for the outlawed mobsters. The Jersey crew went into hiding, Accetturo spent most of this time in jail on a contempt charge. One Accetturo soldier was shot, but survived. No other Jersey members were killed or even wounded during the one sided war.
In 1993 Anthony Accetturo was convicted on racketeering charges. After he found out a trusted underling had given photos of his wife to rival mobsters he decided to cooperate with the government. Of course the fact that he could spend the next thirty years in prison was a huge motivation as well. With the flipping of Accetturo, several other crew members did the same, others were convicted. The times of the powerful Lucchese Jersey crew were history.
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