It was September 11th 1989, a nice morning in New Springville. Fred Weiss was leaving his girlfriends apartment and getting into his car at 8:30 am when two men ran up on him and shot and killed him. He was shot a number of times in his head and once in his right arm, his Jeep, that he was found next to, also had bullet holes in it. Not a trace of bullet shells or a weapon were found at the site.
Fred Weiss was a partner of a real estate company called W. & W. Properties, and also owned a recycling company, along with that he was a former journalist to the Staten Island Advance. He was out on $250,000 bail at the time. Weiss was facing 6 counts of mail fraud as well as conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. Mr. Weiss's co-defendants - Angelo Paccione of Brooklyn, Anthony Vulpis of Queens and John B. McDonald of Demarest, N.J. - each faced prison terms of up to 70 years and $2 million in fines if convicted.
The problem was, and why Weiss had a hit on him, was due to illegal dumping of medical waste that he was apart of. Weiss had been paid to get rid of whatever waste was being brought to him. He was dumping it in a landfill on the Northwest corner of Staten Island that he and a few others leased. It is said they all made close to 7 million dollars off of the illegal activity. The waste that was being dumped there ranged between garbage, asbestos and infectious medical waste.
Well after Weiss became front and center of the investigation, Mob boss John Gotti became nervous. Weiss was doing this for two major crime families: the New York Gambino crime family and the Decavalcante family. So needles to say it was felt that he had to be eliminated because of the paranoia of both families that he may cooperate with the Feds. So the hit was ordered by Gotti and was carried out by Anthony Capo, James "Jimmy" Gallo, and Giovanni "John the Eagle" Riggi. Riggi, who was in jail at the time he plead guilty to the crime in 2009 said " I and others met and we agreed that Fred Weiss should be murdered" " Pursuant to that agreement, Fred Weiss was murdered, thats it."
Yesterday in court, Joseph Watts age 69, a one time friend and hit man of John Gotti, plead guilty to setting up the hit on Fred Weiss. The case was going to go through some of the earlier and gory crimes of the so called Gotti Era and re cap the evidence they had against Watts that implicated him in another 11 killings. Watts chose to plead guilty instead and is now facing 13 years in prison. "I conspired and agreed with others to murder Fred Weiss to prevent him from cooperating with the government," Watts told Federal District Judge Colleen McMahon. The day before Weiss was murdered a team put together by Watts went to kill him but he managed to get away. The next day they caught up with him and he was killed outside a home in New Springville.
|Mob Boss Riggi during the trial of the 1989 slaying of Weiss|