Advertisement

Women in Organized Crime in the United States

  • Clare Longrigg
Part of the STUDIES IN ORGANIZED CRIME book series (SOOC, volume 5)

Abstract

A woman described in the press in the 1940s as “the most successful woman in America” was not a Hollywood star or a novelist: she was a “gangster’s moll.” Virginia Hill, mistress and accomplice of gangster Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel, was, even by today’s standards, a celebrity. The difference between her and other gangsters’ mistresses was that she was not merely decorative, she actually worked for U.S. crime bosses Meyer Lansky and Lucky Luciano and, later, for Siegel. Hill’s “success” says much about the American attitude toward organized crime. Popular mythology celebrates the outlaws who escaped from poverty and made fabulous amounts of money by beating the system. Even though Virginia Hill’s life ended in suicide, the American public saw only glamour in a beautiful woman living a life of crime.

Keywords

Organize Crime Criminal Enterprise Criminal Gang Italian Immigrant Lower East Side 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Peter Maas, The Valachi Papers (New York: Bantam, 1968), 56.Google Scholar
  2. Tim Shawcross, The War against the Mafia (London: Mainstream, 1994), 47–48.Google Scholar
  3. Christopher Silvester, “RICO and the Tobacco Kings.”Google Scholar
  4. Maria Laurino, Were You Always an Italian? (New York: Norton, 2000), 35.Google Scholar
  5. Peter Maas, Underboss (New York: Harper Paperback, 1997), 341–342.Google Scholar
  6. Shawcross, 23.Google Scholar
  7. Shawcross, 277.Google Scholar
  8. Teresa Carpenter, Mob Girl (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1992), 13.Google Scholar
  9. Interview with Brenda Colletti, Pennsylvania, 16 March 1996.Google Scholar
  10. Shawcross, 75.Google Scholar
  11. Maas, Underboss, 82.Google Scholar
  12. Ibid., 134Google Scholar
  13. Nicholas Pileggi, Wiseguy: Life in a Mafia Family (New York: Pocket Books, 1985).Google Scholar
  14. Interview with Maria Laurino, July 2001.Google Scholar
  15. Laurino, 41.Google Scholar
  16. Maas, Valachi, 83.Google Scholar
  17. Claire Sterling, The Mafia (London: Hamish Hamilton, 1990), 106.Google Scholar
  18. Shawcross, 261.Google Scholar
  19. Ibid., 16.Google Scholar
  20. Joseph D Pistone's testimony before the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations of the Committee on Governmental Affairs, 1988.Google Scholar
  21. Maas, Underboss, 92.Google Scholar
  22. Ibid., 99.Google Scholar
  23. Ibid., 151.Google Scholar
  24. Ibid., 236.Google Scholar
  25. Ibid., 479.Google Scholar
  26. Laurino, 158.Google Scholar
  27. Susan Berman, Easy Street (Dial Press, 1981), 210.Google Scholar
  28. Pistone, testimony.Google Scholar
  29. Shawcross, 162.Google Scholar
  30. Jerry Capeci and Gene Mustain, Gotti: Rise and Fall (New York: Onyx/Penguin, 1996), 67.Google Scholar
  31. Maas, Underboss, 260.Google Scholar
  32. Capeci and Mustain, 66.Google Scholar
  33. Shawcross, 164.Google Scholar
  34. New York Post, 4 January 2002.Google Scholar
  35. New York Post, 22 July 2001.Google Scholar
  36. New York Post, 9 September 2001.Google Scholar
  37. New York Post, July 8 2001Google Scholar
  38. Carpenter, 13.Google Scholar
  39. Carl Sifakis, The Mafia Encyclopedia (New York: Checkmark Books, 1999), 175–176.Google Scholar
  40. Carpenter, 13.Google Scholar
  41. Ibid., 216.Google Scholar
  42. Pistone, testimony.Google Scholar
  43. Carpenter, 157.Google Scholar
  44. Ibid., 160.Google Scholar
  45. Georgia Durante, The Company She Keeps (Nashville: Celebrity Books, 1998), 91.Google Scholar
  46. Ibid., 162.Google Scholar
  47. Berman, 43–44.Google Scholar
  48. Ibid., 46.Google Scholar
  49. Ibid., 116.Google Scholar
  50. Ibid., 141.Google Scholar
  51. Testimony of Dorothy Fiorenza in the trial of Andrew Russo and Dennis Hickey, U.S. Courthouse, Brooklyn, New York, 12–13 January 1999, 874.Google Scholar
  52. Ibid., 742.Google Scholar
  53. Ibid., 760.Google Scholar
  54. Ibid., 780, lines 1–9.Google Scholar
  55. Ibid., 761, lines 9–16.Google Scholar
  56. Ibid., 799, lines 17–23.Google Scholar
  57. Ibid., 1107, lines 1–2.Google Scholar
  58. Ibid., 946, lines 3–15.Google Scholar
  59. Interview with Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Dorsky, 11 October 2001.Google Scholar
  60. New York Daily News, 13 January 1999.Google Scholar
  61. Interview with Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Dorsky, 5 May 2001.Google Scholar
  62. Daily News, 27 January 1999, report by Helen Peterson.Google Scholar
  63. Pistone, testimony.Google Scholar
  64. Testimony of Brenda Colletti, U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania, 23 October 1995, 57.Google Scholar
  65. Philadelphia Inquirer, 4 December 1995.Google Scholar
  66. Philadelphia Inquirer, 24 October 1995.Google Scholar
  67. Philadelphia Inquirer, 22 November 1995.Google Scholar
  68. Philadelphia Inquirer, 5 November 1995.Google Scholar
  69. Giovanna Fiume, “Ci sono donne nella mafia?” Meridiana, no. 7–8 (1990), 293 [essay in a history and social science magazine].Google Scholar
  70. Colletti, testimony, 52.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Clare Longrigg

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations