A mobster convicted of murdering a opportunity murder witness four decades in the past was again on the stand Monday, arguing that his lifestyle sentence should really be tossed due to the fact his legal professional misled him — and other individuals who committed extra vile crimes received a slap on the wrist.
Stephen LoCurto — regarded in the Huge Apple’s seedy underworld as “Stevie Blue” — told a federal judge in Brooklyn that he would have taken a plea deal during his 2006 trial if his lawyer hadn’t misled him about the quantity of jail time he confronted.
“These fellas all had two and three murders, and they were being getting 10-calendar year pleas!” the 62-calendar year-aged grinning killer explained to the choose, referencing other mobbed-up murderers who he claimed had far more bodies on them than he did.
But his previous trial legal professional, Harry Batchelder, never informed him that he was experiencing everyday living in prison, LoCurto stated in his erratic, meandering testimony.
The Bonanno crime loved ones mobster claimed he believed he only confronted 20 yrs in jail — or about the exact same as what the feds supplied in their plea offer.
Batchelder should really have grabbed him by the collar, shook him and reported he was risking lifetime in prison by rejecting the offer, LoCurto reported.
Thinking the deal was no much better than what he faced at demo, LoCurto reported he advised his attorney to convey to prosecutors what they could do with the offer.
“Didn’t you tell [Assistant US Attorney] Greg Andres that he could ‘wipe his a–‘ with that letter?” assistant Assistant US Lawyer Andrew Roddin asked the smart man Monday.
“I stated a little something slang, I don’t truly remember,” LoCurto replied.
Batchelder testified about Zoom that LoCurto’s story was completely wrong.
The lawyer introduced what he known as a plea proposal to his customer – who then explained to him that he could “wipe my a–” with it.
“Steven was adamant that he was not going to acquire 20 decades,” Batchelder explained. “He believed that he could testify on his possess behalf and prevail at demo. I attempted to clarify that this scenario was diverse from [an earlier state trial in which LoCurto was acquitted].”
LoCurto also admitted later that he experienced been supplied access to court files that stated he faced daily life in prison if convicted.
LoCutro was convicted of the racketeering-linked murder in July 2006 when a jury located that the then-45-year-outdated soldier with the Bonanno criminal offense family had put a bullet in Joseph Platia — a possible witness in a murder — about two many years before, according to the New York Occasions.
Federal authorities reported at the time that the mob set a hit out on Platia simply because the gangsters considered he knew which Bonanno loved ones mobsters experienced murdered and dismembered one particular of his buddies, mob associate Robert Capasio.
Right immediately after the Manhattan capturing, LoCurto was arrested a block absent with the .38-caliber pistol still heat in his pocket, the Instances claimed.
LoCurto advised the court docket that he’d read the pictures, then just stumbled on Platia’s lifeless body slumped in excess of in a motor vehicle with a gun subsequent to him.
LoCurto claimed he picked up the gun and put it in his pocket for self-defense, the Situations said.
The mobster has been preventing the conviction due to the fact it was determined, such as a unsuccessful attractiveness in 2009, in accordance to the Each day Information.
Federal prosecutors have preserved that the 20-12 months plea was by no means an precise offer, the Each day News stated.
Batchelder verified that Monday.
“I would phone this a letter of proposal,“ he testified. “They experienced 25 defendants. It was a plea proposal.”