Prosecutors to Seek Death for Mafia Don

From Times Wire Reports

Federal prosecutors told lawyers for Mafia kingpin Joseph Massino in New York that they intended to ask for the death penalty in the 1999 killing of Gerlando Sciascia, a captain in Massino’s crime family.

Massino lawyer David Breitbart said the decision was a “parting gift” from U.S. Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft, who has announced his resignation. “It seems absolutely absurd,” Breitbart said.

Massino was convicted in July of orchestrating a quarter-century of murder, racketeering, arson, extortion and other crimes and is awaiting sentencing.