State

Reputed Chicago mobster claims abuse in prison

CHICAGO – Restrictions imposed on Chicago mob boss Joseph "Joey the Clown" Lombardo at the North Carolina federal prison where he's serving a life sentence amount to elder abuse, his lawyers contend in a court filing.

Lombardo, 84, was among three reputed mob bosses and two alleged henchmen convicted in September 2007 at the landmark Operation Family Secrets trial which lifted the curtain of secrecy from the seamy operations of Chicago's underworld. He was sentenced to life in prison for serving as a leader of Chicago's organized crime family and the murder of government witness.

His attorneys contend in a Dec. 23 filing that he was subjected to "elder abuse" when authorities placed him under "special administrative measures," restricting his access to mail, phone and visitors.

"The imposition of these draconian conditions against an 84-year-old, chronically ill, wheelchair-user can only be an attempt to appear 'tough on crime' by engaging in 'elder abuse' against a man who once had a reputation (deserved or not) as a major player in the Chicago 'Mob,'" his attorneys wrote. They claim, "extra-judicial punishment and administrative overreach."

Lombardo is held at the federal prison medical facility in Butner, N.C.

The government responded on Friday, requesting Lombardo's motion be dismissed because it should have been filed in North Carolina, not Chicago. The government also argues that Lombardo can't go to court until he goes through all other administrative remedies.

Loading more

Digital Access

Digital Access
Access nwherald.com from all your digital devices and receive breaking news and updates from around the area.

Home Delivery

Home Delivery
Local news, prep sports, Chicago sports, local and regional entertainment, business, home and lifestyle, food, classified and more! News you use every day! Daily, weekend and Sunday packages.

Text Alerts

Text Alerts
Stay connected to us wherever you are! Get breaking news updates along with other area information sent to you as a text message to your wireless device.

Email Newsletters

Email Newsletters
We'll deliver news & updates to your inbox. Plan your weekend and catch up on the news with our newsletters.