Crime History, Feb. 24, 2000: Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano busted after helping feds

On this day, Feb. 24, in 2000, Sammy “the Bull” Gravano, the highest ranking mob turncoat at the time, was arrested for overseeing a major family-run Ecstasy ring after relocating to Arizona.

Salvatore "Sammy the Bull" Gravano

Salvatore “Sammy the Bull” Gravano

Gravano, his wife, daughter and son were among 35 people arrested in early-morning raids around the Phoenix area.

Gravano had moved to the Southwest after admitting a role in 19 murders and becoming a government witness.  His testimony helped the feds rack up 37 convictions of his former associates, including his former pal, John Gotti.

Gravano provided the key evidence against Gotti in 1992, resulting in a life prison term for Gotti and five years for Gravano.

Gravano dropped out of the witnesses protection program in 1998 and dared gangsters to try to kill him. He wrote a book about his life, saying he may have been a killer but he was against drugs and gangsters who brought their children into the life of crime.

Gravano pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 20 years in the Colorado Supermax facility.

— Scott McCabe



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