Experts ponder gang ties after violence-filled weekend in Montreal
Published Monday, August 13, 2012 8:19PM EDT
Last Updated Monday, August 13, 2012 10:41PM EDT
A possible gang war may be unfolding in Montreal, after three people were shot and killed over the weekend, including a gang member with links to the Italian Mafia, say crime experts.
Court documents revealed that one of the weekend’s victims, 42-year-old Lamartine Severe Paul, had links to the Montreal-based Rizzutto family.
On Friday, Paul was shot and killed while walking into his apartment in Laval. Police say Paul was a known gang member.
The Rizzutto family was headed by Vito Rizzutto before he was jailed in the U.S.
Rizzutto is now serving time in a Colorado prison, after pleading guilty to charges in connection to a string of 1981 murders of members of a rival Mafia clan.
While in prison, many of Rizzutto’s close associates have been killed, including his own father and son.
Rizzutto is scheduled to be released in October and some believe a power struggle in the group is now heating up.
Criminologist Maria Mourani told CTV Montreal that she’s heard that the murders could be connected to Rizzutto’s return.
“What I hear in the field is that those murders are linked to the return of Vito Rizzutto. Some think it's the beginning of a vendetta,” said Mourani.
Paul was killed just a few hours after known gang leader Chenier Dupuy was fatally shot in a mall parking lot in the city’s east end.
Police say the 37-year-old Dupuy was the leader of the powerful “Bo Gars” street gang.
According to one researcher, Dupuy was warned by police that others wanted him dead.
“It's been brewing for quite a while because the police had already told Chenier Dupuy that his life was in danger, and that there was a contract on his head,” said LaPresse journalist Vincent Larouche.
On Saturday, a 33-year-old man was found shot to death inside an upscale condominium.
Montreal police won’t say if there is a connection between these three incidents.
With a report from CTV Montreal’s Rob Lurie