Category: Philly Mob

Philadelphia Mafia family – One of the most violent Mafia family in the US

The Philadelphia Mafia family is also known as Philadelphia South Jersey Mafia/Mob, South Philly Mob/Mafia or Philly Mafia/Mob. This mafia family is based and formed in South Philadelphia, operating in different metropolitan regions of the state, New Jersey and Southeastern Pennsylvania.

History of the family

This family is said to be known for its notoriousness, violence, especially because of its involvement in multiple mob wars and presence of violent bosses. It was between 1959 and 1980, under the reign of Angelo Bruno that this family had enjoyed immense prosperity and peace. It is this period that the media and law enforcement agency had started to name it as Bruno crime family. However, in 1980 Bruno was murdered because of a complex dispute that arose which involved New York Mafia and disgruntled mafia members and subordinates. With his death, this crime family saw gradual decline in its power. Multiple internal wars took place, which saw the rising of two of the most violent bosses of the family.

The reign of Scarfo

Nicodemo Scarfo had become its boss after the death of Bruno and during his time, the family was called Scarfo crime family.  Although during his 10 year reign, the family enjoyed immense power, it had become highly dysfunctional. But, the short tempered Scarfo had a penchant for violence. It was under his reign that the family got into narcotics trafficking, demanding every criminal to pay up street taxes if they operated in a region that Scarfo assumed belonged to be his own. Even moderate disputes led to executions. During the 1980’s, the Scarfo family saw the murder of 20 of its own men. The increased violence made the New Jersey Police, Pennsylvania State Police and the FBI to react. Few mobsters were convinced to become government witnesses, which included the nephew of Scarfo, for escaping prison or death. In 1988, with the arrest and sentencing of Scarfo and his top allies, his downfall came.

After Scarfo

Scarfo was succeeded by John Stanfa, but very soon his leadership was disputed and the family was in war, which ended with his arrest in 1994. Merlino then took over the leadership. The 30 years of internal warfare, violence and government interference saw the family to get weakened severely. Still, it has been regarded to be among the country’s active Mafia families. Presently, it is engaged more into betting operations, extortion, loan sharking and illegal sports.