His predecessor Victor “Little Vic” Orena, also 87, was denied compassionate release
Colombo crime family bosses have been dealt two takes on how they’ll spend their twilight years.
According to the New York Daily News, current boss Andrew “Mush” Russo, 87, who is charged in a long-running union shakedown, won his freedom with a $10-million bond.
His predecessor in the fabled Mob family wasn’t so lucky. Victor “Little Vic” Orena, also 87, was denied compassionate release despite his rapidly failing health.
Russo was allowed home detention and a judge ruled he posed no threat to public safety. He is suffering from a form of dementia.
“If they want to get some more doctors to reach the same conclusion, they’re certainly welcome to do that,” Russo lawyer Jeffrey Lichtman told the News. “He’s also been shackled by both ankles to a bed 24 hours a day and the government told the judge that Andrew was receiving ‘excellent around-the-clock care.’ That didn’t fly either.”
Orena was the Colombo kingpin during a bloody civil war that left 15 people dead in the streets of New York in the early 1990s. The octogenarian mobster’s health problems are worse than his successor’s.
His mouthpieces say Orena suffers from dementia, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, glaucoma and heart problems.
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“A strain of cases … has emerged in which the offenders’ criminal history is so long, and their victims so numerous, that even serious health conditions do not suffice to merit relief,” the judge wrote. “This case falls squarely in that category.”
One of the dead in the fratricidal fight was an innocent teenager who was shot six times in a Brooklyn bagel shop.
Last month, Orena’s legal eagles claimed the he believes he is president of the United States.
That failed to sway the judge, who described the arch-criminal as “a singular figure in the annals of the Colombo family.”
“He rose to a leadership role, becoming acting boss in 1988, and his efforts to cling to power triggered a bloody war,” the judge wrote. “Orena oversaw a campaign of violence that resulted in a swath of death and serious injury.”