Frederico "Lupo" Randaccio was born in Palermo, July 1, 1907. His father Umberto (born Oct. 16, 1880) crossed the Atlantic early in 1910, arriving in the U.S. on Feb. 9, 1910. Frederico, his sister Eloisa and his mother Maria D'Amico Randaccio followed five months later, using the assumed surname of Fassi.
Frederico attended Buffalo public schools until the seventh grade. Following his thirteenth birthday in July 1920, he was arrested as a juvenile delinquent. A second juvenile delinquency arrest followed two years later.
As a member of Buffalo's DiCarlo Gang, Randaccio became acquainted with Pasquale "Pat Titters" Natarelli, John Cammilleri and the Pieri brothers. He also became well acquainted with the local authorities. He was arrested for gambling in 1925 and for bootlegging early in 1926.
One of the DiCarlo Gang's money-making rackets was extorting payments from bookmakers and operators of crap games. Randaccio became adept at extracting payments from gambling enterprises.
In 1928, he was fined $10 after being convicted of third-degree assault. A year later, he and his father were arrested on an open charge and questioned by police in connection with the murder of Joseph Syracuse.
Randaccio was sentenced to ten years in Elmira Reformatory following a September 1930 conviction for first-degree robbery. Released early, he was returned to prison for parole violation and remained there until June 11, 1941.
During the 1940s, Randaccio was closely associated with horserace wire rooms operated by Joseph DiCarlo and John Tronolone. Randaccio was questioned at length following the murder of anti-gambling crusader Edward Pospichal.
An honorable discharge after six months' service in the U.S. Army in 1945 allowed Randaccio to obtain his U.S. citizenship.
After DiCarlo's move to Youngstown, Ohio, Randaccio became the chief enforcer for Buffalo crime family leaders Vito "Buck Jones" Domiano, Angelo Acquisto and James "Julie" Caputo. Caputo's 1951 death allowed Randaccio to step into the role of Domiano's bodyguard and collector. The deaths of Acquisto in 1956 and Domiano in 1958 drew Randaccio up into the leadership of the western New York crime family commanded by Niagara Falls-based Stefano Magaddino. In 1958, Randaccio was Magaddino's chief lieutenant in Buffalo and overseer of all Mafia gambling operations in the city. At that time, Pasquale Natarelli became Randaccio's right-hand man. Randaccio's accession followed the Mafia's exposure at the Apalachin convention and coincided with an intensification of FBI efforts against racketeers. Randaccio was targeted by the Top Hoodlum Program initiated by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover.
Randaccio's brother Victor and John Cammilleri helped to establish underworld control over Buffalo Local 210 of the International Laborers' Union.
Randaccio successfully quelled local opposition to Magaddino during the late 1950s and early 1960s. Independent-minded burglars Frank and Fred Aquino were murdered in September 1958, and Vincent Santangelo and Anthony Palestine met their violent ends in August 1961. Later that year, after Magaddino Crime Family narcotics trafficking became known to authorities, accused drug smuggler Alberto Agueci attempted to force Magaddino to provide financial support to himself and his brother, also charged with drug trafficking. Agueci's charred corpse was found in cornfield outside of Rochester on Nov. 23, 1961. FBI surveillance overheard Randaccio describing the disposal of Agueci's body.
Randaccio was arrested in the May 8, 1967, police raid on Panaro's Lounge. He and 35 others, including Joseph DiCarlo and Pasquale Natarelli, were charged with consorting with known criminals. At the time of the arrests, Randaccio flew into a rage and cursed law enforcement officers. The charges were later dismissed, but Randaccio's behavior and the failure of his political connections to warn him of the raid drew the ire of his boss Magaddino.
Randaccio, Natarelli, Stephen Cino, Charles Caci and Louis Sorgi subsequently faced federal conspiracy charges in connection with planned robberies in West Virginia and California. Testimony by mob informant Pascal Calabrese helped to convict all five defendants in November 1967. Randaccio and Natarelli were sentenced to 20-year terms in federal prison.
In the absence of the Magaddino Crime Family's top two Buffalo administrators, an anti-Magaddino faction took hold in the city's underworld.
Randaccio was paroled from prison at the age of 71. He had served 11 years of his conspiracy sentence. While law enforcement expected him to attempt to seize control of the Mafia in Buffalo, Randaccio instead settled into a quiet semi-retirement.
He died of natural causes, Oct. 4, 2004, at the age of 97.
|Grave of Frederico Randaccio