Louis Eppolito Convicted on Tax Charges


Louis Eppolito

Originally uploaded by Thomas Roche

According to KMPH in San Joaquin County, a US District Court judge in Nevada sentenced former NYPD detective Louis Eppolito to 18 months in prison and ordered him to pay $102,000 on tax charges.

Eppolito was the son of Ralph “Fat the Gangster” Eppolito, a Mafia hit man who died when Louis was young. His uncle and cousin were also made members of the Gambino family, and were killed in gangland violence by the infamous DeMeo crew. Eppolito did not dispute these facts in his book Mafia Cop: The Story of an Honest Cop Whose Family Was the Mob, and in fact as you can see kinda owned up to them in the subtitle.

The book was about Louis’s struggle to establish and preserve his reputation as a NYPD detective, where he was hounded by Internal Affairs and some of his fellow cops who didn’t believe that a Mafia family could produce an honest cop. He was finally hounded off the force over an incident in which he was accused of passing confidential police information to Mob members.

I enjoyed the book immensely; I even found it moving at times. Eppolito’s self-righteousness rang kinda false, but when you read mob biographies you get a lot of self-righteousness, as much of it coming from the cops as from the robbers; Eppolito, the cop son of robbers, had it in spades, but I didn’t begrudge him that.

Louis Eppolito, with fellow NYPD detective Stephen Caracappa, was later convicted of labor racketeering, extortion, obstruction of justice, drug and gambling charges, not to mention eight murders. The charges go back to the 1980s, when Eppolito and Caracappa served as a hit team for the mob. A judge later threw out several of the convictions because the statute of limitations had expired; though there’s no statute of limitations on murder in New York, the killings were in fact prosecuted in federal court. The remaining convictions are currently on appeal.

Incidentally, a guy named Albert DeMeo was the son of Roy DeMeo of the DeMeo crew, the crew that clipped Eppolito’s uncle and cousin. Albert wrote a book called For the Sins of My Father: A Mafia Killer, His Son, and the Legacy of a Mob Life, which I read while cruising the Inner Passage in Alaska with my parents. I very much enjoyed that book as well. Roy DeMeo was also the subject of Gene Mustain and Jerry Capece’s semi-classic Murder Machine.

Information and public-domain photo from Wikipedia.

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