Police in Brick arrest accused killer of reputed mob boss

Lamar Ellis
March 17, 2019

Anthony Comello was arrested in New Jersey in the death of Francesco Cali on Wednesday in front of his Staten Island home, said Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea, who stressed that the investigation is in its early stages.

This story will be updated with more details as they become available. "Obviously, there are multiple angles that are being explored at this time".

When asked about the suspect's arrest record, Shea said he "crossed paths in some limited circumstances with the NYPD", including getting a parking ticket on Staten Island the day Cali was killed.

CNN is trying to reach Comello's lawyer for comment.

The suspect "is now being held in jail in New Jersey pending court appearances, where we anticipate we will have him returned to Staten Island to face murder charges for the death of Francesco Cali, which occurred on this past Wednesday evening", Shea said.

Comello's fingerprints were found on Cali's license plate, sources said.

When Cali tried to take cover behind his vehicle, the pickup truck drove into it and "rocked" it significantly, Shea said. He was rushed to Staten Island University Hospital North, where he was pronounced dead.

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It's "quite possible" that the incident was staged to draw Cali outside and into a confrontation with the suspected shooter, Shea said.

The truck involved in the encounter has since been recovered, though the murder weapon has not, according to the police official.

Authorities alleged Cali and others arranged, through force and threat of force, to receive cash payments from someone who had worked on the project.

Cali was released after 16 months in federal prison in April 2009 for an extortion scheme.

Castellano's death led to the rise of John "Dapper Don" Gotti, who then took over as Gambino family boss, running criminal enterprises ranging from gambling to money laundering to prostitution.

Gotti, who was convicted of murder and racketeering in 1992, died of cancer in prison nine years later at the age of 61.

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