Friday, October 22, 2010

TOP STORY > >Mobster in Cabot waits for sentence

By joan mccoy
Leader staff writer

The Cabot man connected to the New York Mafia who was indicted for a multitude of crimes more than a year ago was convicted in federal court this week, along with a Colombo Family street boss on three of those charges.

George Wylie Thompson, 65, of Cabot and Ralph Francis DeLeo, 67, of Somerville, Mass., near Boston, face sentences of up to 40 years in prison and fines of up to $2 million for conspiracy to possess with intent to deliver and sentences of up to 40 years and fines of up to $2 million for possession with intent to deliver.

They also face sentences of up to four years in prison and fines of up to $250,000 for using a communication device in drug crime.

“We are obviously very pleased with the jury’s verdict,” U.S. Attorney Jane Duke said in a press release Thursday after the jury delivered its verdict. “It has been our belief from the beginning that the evidence of guilt in this case was substantial. The jury, no doubt, agreed with that assessment today. 

“I want to thank the many agencies that assisted in this investigation, both in the Eastern District of Arkansas and the District of Massachusetts. And, I want to commend the hard work of the assistant 

United States attorneys and support staff from my office whose efforts in the trial of this case were simply outstanding,”  the prosecutor said.

North Little Rock Alderman Cary Gaines still faces charges of public corruption for attempting to fix bids on public-works projects. Thompson faces charges of illegal weapon possession, and former North Little Rock Alderman Sam Baggett faces charges of selling a weapon to a known felon (Thompson) and then lying about it to federal agents. Gaines also is charged with lying to federal agents.

The Thompson-Baggett trial is set for Dec. 7. The Thompson- Gaines trial is set for Feb. 1. Thompson’s son, George Allen Thompson, also has been indicted on gun and drug charges. His trial is set for Dec. 13.

The elder Thompson was arrested last November in Bangkok, Thailand, where he fled after his Cabot home was searched and an arsenal of weapons and ammunition seized. Thompson and DeLeo also were indicted in Massachusetts. No trial date has been set in that case.

The Massachusetts indictment alleges that Thompson supplied guns to the Mafia Colombo Family. 

According to the indictment, Thompson was a member of the DeLeo Crew, named for Ralph Deleo.

The DeLeo Crew allegedly engaged in the importation, trafficking and distribution of narcotics and controlled substances, including cocaine and marijuana; extortion; loan sharking, and interstate and foreign travel in aid of racketeering, mainly in Massachusetts, Arkansas, Rhode Island, New York and Florida.

Thompson fled to Thailand after federal law-enforcement officers searched his home in Cabot May 12, 2009, and found 147 firearms, five silencers and more than 80,000 rounds of ammunition.

The Massachusetts indictment also alleges that DeLeo made it possible for Thompson to remain out of the country by arranging the shipment of his prescription medicines.

Also named in the indictment were Edmond Kulesza, 56, of Somerville, and Franklin M. Goldman, 66, of Randolf, Mass.

The indictment alleges that Goldman’s job in the organization included setting up illegal narcotics deals as well as engaging in extortion and extortionate collection of debt, while Kulesza served as an enforcer or “muscle” for the illegal enterprise.

Gaines and Baggett were not included in the investigation into organized crime, and they are not incarcerated while they wait for trial.