102-year-old mob under-boss John “Sonny” Franzese served over 35 years behind bars but would not rat on his friends, and he’s comparing his conduct to that of Jesus Christ.
Franzese explained in an interview with Newsday that FBI officials begged him to reveal who his fellow mobsters were, offering to reduce his 50 prospective years in prison. Franzese was released in June 2017.
— Newsday (@Newsday) March 27, 2019
After watching mobsters give up their friends to avoid lengthy prison sentences and holding his tongue for over 75 years throughout his mob days and while in prison, Franzese said “no one in history” has ever had the strength he did.
“Jesus suffered,” he told Newsday. “He didn’t squeal on nobody.”
Accused of “multimillion-dollar bookmaking, loan sharking and extortion rackets and caught on tape alluding to multiple murders he claimed to have committed,” Franzese would not budge.
“They wanted me to roll all the time,” he said. “I couldn’t do that. Because it’s my principle.”
Franzese commented on his quality of life in prison, saying he wouldn’t put a dog in jail. He still expressed resentment against the prosecutors who led to his jail time, too.
“I’ll meet them in hell,” he told Newsday.
Though Franzese earned the respect of many for his silence, including the late John Gotti, who called him a “tough [expletive] guy.”
Franzese was allegedly caught on tape admitting to a number of murders.
“I killed a lot of guys … you’re not talking about four, five, six, 10,” he allegedly said in a conversation secretly taped by Gaetano Fatato, one of his fellow mobsters.
“What we done in New York is unbelievable,” he told Newsday. “I wasn’t a guy that was afraid, you know. Don’t forget, I fought everybody.”
The mobster reminisced on his glory days in the mafia, claiming to have had relationships with stars like Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield and Dagmar.
“You asked the question the wrong way. You should have asked, ‘Did Frank Sinatra know Sonny Franzese?'” he said when asked if he knew Frank Sinatra.
Franzese also opened up about the betrayal of his two sons, who testified against him and turned against the mob. John Jr. went so far as to wear a wire and send his father back to jail at age 93, after which he entered a witness protection program. (RELATED: Infamous Mobster James ‘Whitey’ Bulger Found Dead After Prison Transfer)
“I don’t know what happened to him,” Franzee told Newsday. “Maybe all the drugs he took. Screwed his mind up. Listen, it broke my heart. He would be the last guy I thought would do that. But he did it.”
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