Howard Beach deli owner heads to court in Forum case

Robert Pisani, an alleged associate of the Bonnanno crime family, is heading to court in Sept. and Oct. for two separate alleged crimes.
By Naeisha Rose

Robert Pisani, a deli-owner allegedly involved in asking the publisher of The Forum weekly in southeast Queens to silence a witness against him in a sexual assault, is facing two court dates in the Howard Beach cases, according to a spokesman for Brooklyn federal court.

The father of the alleged victim accused Patricia Adams, also the founder of The Forum, of trying to use her newspaper to humiliate his daughter, according to FBI agent Andrew Campbell. The FBI has a 2½-hour recording of Adams allegedly threatening to smear the victim in The Forum from a tape made by the father.

Pisani could face up to one year in prison if convicted on the forcible touching charges.

The owner of the All American Deli in Howard Beach is alleged by the FBI to have ties to the Bonnanno crime family and is set to go before a judge twice within two weeks for cases involving sexual assault and racketeering.

Pisani is expected in Brooklyn federal court Sept. 18 to face charges of racketeering, operation of illegal gambling businesses and debt extortion, according to the FBI.

He could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted on the racketeering charges, according to a spokesman for the federal court.

He is scheduled to appear in Queens Criminal Court two weeks after that Oct. 5 on separate charges of forcible touching, sexual abuse and harassment, according to a spokeswoman for the Queens DA.

Pisani was arraigned March 28, 2017, on racketeering charges with nine other alleged associates of the Bonnanno crime family, according to the criminal complaint filed by the federal court. The crime family operated throughout Queens and ran an illegal gambling ring in Ozone Park, according to the FBI.

If all of the alleged associates are convicted, the Justice Department would collect $26 million in forfeitures from the racketeering charges, according to a spokesman for the court.

Pisani’s bail under the racketeering charges included two properties and a $500,000 bond, which was co-signed by his wife Jamie, according to the FBI.

When he was arrested May 4 on charges of forcible touching an employee at his All American Bagel & Barista Company in Howard Beach, he violated the terms of his bail, according to the FBI.

Reach reporter Naeisha Rose by e-mail at nrose@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4573.

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