A convicted mobster who is serving a 40-year sentence on racketeering charges may get an early release for tipping off federal officials about a cache of explosives linked to the deadly Oklahoma City bombing, it was revealed today.
Gregory Scarpa Jr, 64, a former member of the Colombo crime family and the son of a notorious Mafia hit man dubbed the ‘Grim Reaper,’ has been unsuccessfully trying to get his conviction thrown out for the better part of 20 years.
During his time behind bars, Scarpa acted as an FBI informant in a high-profile case related to the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, but despite his efforts, his sentence has remained unchanged.
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Gregory Scarpa Jr, 64, a former member of the Colombo crime family, wants a judge to reduce his 40-year sentence as a reward for informing on Oklahoma City bombing co-conspirator Terry Nichols (pictured)
Last month, however, Federal Judge Edward Korman indicated that Scarpa may be entitled to a reward for blowing the whistle on Oklahoma City bombing co-conspirator Terry Nichols, reported the New York Daily News.
Nichols is currently serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for his role in the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in 1995 that killed 168 people and injured over 600 others.
Nichols’ accomplice Timothy McVeigh, the mastermind of the terrorist attack on US soil, was executed by lethal injection in 2001.
Korman asked Assistant US Attorney Patricia Notopoulos to recommend how many years could be shaved off Scarpa’s sentence on a racketeering conviction, but she declined to give a number.
As of now, the 64-year-old mobster is scheduled to be released in 2035.
The prosecution has long objected to Scarpa’s efforts to earn himself an early release, with Notopioulous accusing the inmate during last month’s court hearing of trying to ‘bastardize the system.’
Scarpa and Terry Nichols crossed paths in 2005 at the supermax prison in Florence, Colorado. At the time, the former mobster approached the FBI telling them that the there was a secret stash of explosives available to Nichols’ associates who remained free.
Scarpa initially failed to divulge to the feds the exact location of the explosives, instead showing them an encrypted note written by Nichols.
He offered to try and decipher the code in exchange for a reduced sentence, but the deal fell through after he failed a polygraph test.
Domestic terrorists: Nichols (left) is serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole. Timothy McVeigh (right), the mastermind of the attack, was executed in 2001
This April 19, 1995, file photo shows the north side of the Albert P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City and the devastation caused by a fuel and fertilizer truck bomb detonated in front of the building. The blast killed 168 people and injured more than 600
He later revealed to a private investigator that the cache of explosives was buried under Nichols’ home in Kansas, which turned out to be the case.
This was not Scarpa’s first attempt to have some time shaved off his 40-year prison term.
The mob scion, whose Colombo enforcer father died in prison of AIDS in 1994, began cooperating with the feds in 1996, after he found himself in a cell on the 9th floor tier of the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) the federal jail in lower Manhattan with al Qaeda terrorist Ramzi Yousef, the mastermind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
The Colombo foot solider became an FBI informant after convincing his neighbor that the mafia was sympathetic al Qaeda’s cause.
But in the end, Scarpa’s intelligence-gathering had failed to impress the FBI, which dismissed it as a hoax.