Trump Dynasty: Did Donald Trump Have Mob Connections?

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The alleged ties between Donald Trump and the mob have been discussed for years. They will also be the focus on A&E’s documentary series The Trump Dynasty, which devotes special attention to the building of the Trump Tower and the channels that the current president went through to get it done. Learn more about his alleged mob ties below.

According to the Washington Post, Trump’s affiliation with the mob started with his lawyer and early mentor Roy Cohn. Cohn had reportedly served as a consigliere to mafia dons like Fat Tony Salerno and Carmine Galante, and he guided Trump through these specific channels to build the Trump Tower. Trump built the Tower primarily with concrete rather than steel, and elected to buy the concrete at an inflated price from S&A Concrete, which was co-owned by Cohn’s clients Salerno and Paul Castellano. The latter was the head of the Gambino crime family at the time.

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“New York was so totally corrupt and so controlled by the mob in the ’80s that in order to be a successful businessman, you had to have some way to work that world,” said former FBI agent Walt Stowe. A federal investigation was eventually conducted, which, according to Politico Magazine, concluded that the Trump Tower likely benefited from racketeering connections. Trump also had alleged ties to the Colombo crime family through two specific members: John Staluppi and John Rosatti. City Paper reports that the duo were business partners in numerous car dealerships, who discussed building a Trump-branded limousine in the 1980s.

“Cadillac ought to come up with a design for an incredible limousine that has the big headroom and all of the assets that anyone could want,” Trump was quoted as saying. “And we think we probably designed the ultimate limousine to be found anywhere in the world.” Staluppi also ran a company called Dillinger Charter Service, which supplied helicopters to the Trump Organization.

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Michael Franzese, a former Caporegime for the Colombo family, will appear throughout The Trump Dynasty documentary. He’s spoken in depth about the current state of affairs in the United States and the importance on championing young people during Trump’s presidency. “You have to make a clean break: surround yourself with the right people. I tell a lot of young people: in our life today, you are who you hang out with,” he told TCS. “In the United States we have a tremendous problem with our youth and gangs; I spent a lot of time in prison with young people coming into the system.”

A comment that Trump made during a 2004 panel at the Museum of Television and Radio added to speculation that he had mob ties. “I don’t want to have cameras all over my office, dealing with contractors, politicians, mobsters and everyone else I have to deal with in my business,” he remarked. “You know, mobsters don’t like, as they are talking to me, having cameras all over the room. It would play well on television, but it doesn’t play well with them.”

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