Woodside man gets 20 years in federal prison for working for parents’ cocaine smuggling ring

Photo via Shutterstock/Inset courtesy of U.S. Attorney's office

Like father, like mother, like son.

A Woodside man was ordered on Thursday to spend the next two decades in the slammer after being convicted of working with his Whitestone parents to smuggle cocaine out of their restaurant in Corona, federal prosecutors announced on June 22.

Angelo Gigliotti, 36, helped his parents, Eleanora and Gregorio Gigliotti, import more than 50 kilos of cocaine from Costa Rica over a six-month period through shipments to their Italian restaurant, Cucino Amido Mio, which was located 51-01 108th St. in Corona.

Both of his parents, residents of the Malba section of Whitestone, are already serving hard time in the federal penitentiary after being previously convicted of their roles in the smuggling ring. Eleanora Gigliotti, 56, was sentenced in May to serve seven years in prison, while Gregorio Gigliotti, who’s 61 and also a reputed member of the Genovese crime family, began an 18-year prison term back in April.

“The defendants used their family restaurant in Corona, Queens, as well as a produce importation company, to import over 50 kilograms of cocaine worth millions of dollars from Costa Rica,” Acting U.S. Attorney Bridget M. Rohde said in a statement on Thursday. “The prison sentences imposed on the defendants put an end to the transnational drug trafficking ring they conducted behind the disguise of local businesses.”

Federal prosecutors said the smuggling operation began in 2012, after Gregorio Gigliotti struck a deal with a known drug smuggler who later turned into a government informant. Gigliotti’s partner obtained a license to import yucca, and used that privilege as a front to traffic in large amounts of cocaine that were concealed within the cardboard flaps of boxes containing yucca. The cocaine was then sold on the street.

Cucino Amodo Mio restaurant on 108th Street in Corona (photo via Google Maps)
Cucino Amodo Mio restaurant on 108th Street in Corona (Photo via Google Maps)

The Gigliottis were initially arrested on March 11, 2015, for their alleged roles in the smuggling operation. Twelve others connected to the ring were subsequently indicted.

On the date of the Gigliottis’ arrest, federal agents executed a search warrant at Cucino Amido Mio and seized a cache of weapons including a 12-gauge shotgun, a loaded .357 Magnum Trooper revolver, a .22-caliber Colt pistol, a .38-caliber Charter Arms revolver, a 9 mm Keltec pistol, a .762 Czech pistol and a .38-caliber Derringer with a defaced serial number. Assorted ammunition, brass knuckles, a handwritten ledger that revealed the movement of more than $350,000 in proceeds, and cash in excess of $100,000 was also recovered.

In addition to 20 years in prison, Angelo Gigliotti was also order to serve 10 years’ probation upon release.

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