Funeral services for Mafia boss Vito Rizzuto will be held today at 12:30 pm at Notre-Dâme-de-la-Défense Church in Little Italy as reported by CBC News:
Michel Martin, a former inspector with Quebec's provincial police, said wakes and funerals of people known to be members of the Mafia are often good opportunities to identify possible associates. "Here we'll find them all in the same place in a relatively short period of time," Martin said.
Vito Rizzuto was suffering from lung cancer due to cigarette smoking, and he died last Monday of pneumonia.
Rizzuto and New York's Bonnano family in New York "ran an international drug smuggling operation that imported heroin and cocaine and distributed it in the United States, Europe and the Middle East, the authorities said" as reported byDaniel E. Slotnick for The New York Times.
The mob boss was released from a U.S. prison last year after serving several years on a racketeering conviction involving the 1981 murders of three Bonanno capos in New York City, and while he was doing time a rebellious faction whacked his son Nick Jr. in 2009 and family patriarch Nicolo in 2010.
Police suspect the breakaway group was headed by Raynald Desjardins with backing from the 'Ndrangheta or Calabrian Mafia to take over the drug trade from the Rizzuto clan which is part of Cosa Nostra or the Sicilian Mafia.
The Calabrian Mafia is Italy's most powerful crime group due to its obscene profits from the cocaine trade in Europe, and it has become entrenched in Australia, Canada and the United States with surprisingly little push back from law enforcement in those countries.
Desjardins currently is in prison awaiting trial for his alleged role in the November 2011 slaying of ex-Bonanno boss Salvatore "Sal the Ironworker" Montagna who police suspect had allied himself with the breakaway group until the relationship soured.
The turf war in the Montreal underworld has left the streets littered with dozens of bodies over the last few years, and with Rizzuto's passing expect the carnage to continue in the bid for power.