Retired NYPD Sergeant Convicted of Running Illegal Poker Games

Written by:
Jagajeet Chiba
Published on:
Retired NYPD Sergeant Convicted of Running Illegal Poker Games

A retired NYPD sergeant, Ralph Mastrantonio, 55, has been convicted of running illegal poker games in Staten Island, New York and faces up to five years behind bars.

The investigation into Mastrantonio began in 2011 after the Queens District Attorney’s Office received information that he had been associated with known organized crime figures at the illegal gambling spots.

"You can't just open a casino in a commercial building in Staten Island and dealing cards in an unlicensed gambling business is illegal," Assistant Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Matthew Miller told the jury.

Defense lawyer Daniel Bibb ridiculed the investigation. "The closest they got to organized crime was Sammy Gravano's niece-in-law.”

Others involved in the gambling den included a retired FDNY firefighter and his son, a possible state trooper and individuals who went by the names “Porky Joe” and “Joe the Beef”.

"I don't know the relevance of these meat names," Federal Judge Sterling Johnson said.

- Jagajeet Chiba, Gambling911.com