Jack Tocco: Mobster who was convicted for his part in a 30-year racketeering conspiracy but proclaimed his innocence

 

Jack Tocco was a Detroit mob boss who was convicted of racketeering in 1998 in a federal crackdown on organised crime. Tocco, whose family had a linen business, grew up in suburban Detroit and repeatedly proclaimed his innocence. Convicted of racketeering and conspiracy to commit extortion in 1998. He served nearly three years in prison and paid $950,000 to the government.

A jury convicted Tocco of taking part in a 30-year racketeering conspiracy that included loan-sharking, illegal gambling, obstruction of justice and attempts to gain hidden interests in Nevada casinos. The FBI described him as the Detroit crime family's boss.

Tocco, who had a substantial property portfolio, had been included in a 1996 indictment targeting alleged organised crime figures in Detroit. At a press conference about the case at the time, FBI Special Agent Joseph Martinolich Jr, who headed the agency's Detroit office, said, "Here in Detroit, we believe we've driven a stake through the heart of La Cosa Nostra."

Tocco was initially sentenced to a year and a day in prison, but the sentence was invalidated by the appeals court after the government argued it was too lenient. In 2000 a federal judge in Detroit imposed a new sentence of 34 months. Tocco completed his sentence, criticising former associates who testified against him. "All my adult life, I've been fighting to clear my name," he said. "And I will continue that fight to clear my name until the time I die."

Tocco, a college graduate and active philanthropist, was married for over 60 years and had eight children, two of whom are doctors, while a grandson is a college professor.

Giacomo "Jack" William Tocco, mobster: born c. 1929; married (eight children); died 14 July 2014.

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