Already serving eight years in state prison for pushing pills in Ozone Park and Howard Beach, one of former mob boss John Gotti’s grandsons will be doing extra time in federal prison for arson and bank robbery.
John J. Gotti, 24, pleaded guilty last year to torching a Broad Channel man’s car over a minor traffic infraction involving Vincent Asaro, 83, one of his alleged associates; and participating in a Maspeth bank robbery in April 2012.
This morning, March 14, Gotti returned to federal court in Brooklyn to hear Judge Allyne R. Ross order him to serve five years’ imprisonment. Following the recommendations of U.S. Attorney Richard Donoghue, Ross ordered that 30 months of the sentence to run consecutive to the eight-year state prison term that Gotti is presently serving.
According to federal prosecutors, in April of 2012, Asaro recruited Gotti and two other associates — Matthew Rullan, 28, and an second individual who later became a cooperating witness for the government — to visit a Broad Channel man’s home and set fire to his vehicle.
Asaro — a reputed Bonanno crime family member previously tried for, and acquitted of playing a role in the infamous 1978 Lufthansa terminal heist at Kennedy Airport — was annoyed that the man had cut him off at a stoplight on Cross Bay Boulevard, and wanted revenge. After chasing him down, he later secured the man’s personal information.
On April 4, 2012, Gotti, Rullan and the third individual went to the Broad Channel man’s home, poured gasoline on the victim’s vehicle and set it on fire. Federal prosecutors later learned that a police officer saw the crime in progress, but the trio refused to surrender; they then led police on a high-speed pursuit through the neighborhood which was ended minutes later after police determined it had become too dangerous to continue.
Two weeks after the arson, law enforcement sources said, Gotti, Rullan and a third indicted suspect — Michael Guidici, 23 — worked together to rob the Maspeth Federal Savings bank on 69th Street near Grand Avenue in Maspeth.
At about 5:45 p.m. on April 18, 2012, authorities said, Guidici allegedly walked into the branch, approached a teller and presented a demand note which declared that he was armed with a bomb. The employee subsequently provided Guidici with $5,941 in cash.
Law enforcement sources said that Guidici exited the bank and entered a nearby car, where Gotti and Rullan were waiting; the suspects then took off.
Federal prosecutors said that Gotti has been involved in violent crime “nearly all of [his] adult life,” Donoghue wrote in a sentencing memorandum. As a juvenile offender, Gotti was sentenced to a conditional discharge after being arrested in December 2010 for criminal possession of a weapon in Queens.
Gotti and eight others — including his girlfriend — were arrested in August 2016 by the NYPD Narcotics Borough Queens South after a long-term investigation into illegal prescription drug sales in Howard Beach and Ozone Park. Gotti had previously been arrested on June 30, 2016, by the 106th Precinct after cops found him in possession of large quantities of Oxycodone, Xanax, methadone and other drugs during a routine traffic stop.
“The defendant’s extensive criminal history at a young age — including committing the instant offenses and the narcotics crimes after being prosecuted for unlawful possession of a weapon — demonstrate the need for specific deterrence,” Donoghue wrote in the memorandum.
Donoghue noted that Gotti made “repeated references to his addiction to Oxycodone, which the defendant states drove him to sell the drugs as well.”
In addition to the prison term, Judge Ross ordered Gotti and his co-conspirators to pay $21,276 in damages to the arson victim and the $5,941 stolen from Maspeth Federal Savings bank. Once he’s finally out of prison, a U.S. Attorney spokesperson said, Gotti will also serve three years of supervised release, which includes a 12-hour daily curfew and electronic monitoring.
This article was updated on March 14 at 12:35 p.m.