Reputed Montreal mobster found dead north of city
Published Monday, November 5, 2012 8:01AM EST
Last Updated Monday, November 5, 2012 10:01PM EST
A police investigation is underway after a reputed Montreal mobster was found dead in a suburb north of the city.
Police said the body of Joseph “Joe” Di Maulo was discovered on the driveway of a home in Blainville, Que., about 50 kilometres north of Montreal, around 9:15 p.m. Sunday.
Di Maulo, 70, is known as an influential member of the Mafia in Montreal.
“He was known to be the No. 2 in the Mafia. He’s been involved in the business since the 70s,” CTV’s Montreal Bureau Chief Genevieve Beauchemin told Canada AM on Monday.
He is also the brother-in-law of Raynald Desjardins, charged with the 2011 murder of former Bonanno crime family boss Salvatore Montagna.
Initially dubbed a suspicious death, the Canadian Press reported that Quebec provincial police are now referring to Di Maulo’s death as a homicide.
The Surete du Quebec took the lead on the case about an hour after Di Maulo’s body was found.
Sources told CP that Di Maulo was gunned down, suffering at least two gunshot wounds to the head.
In a phone interview early Monday morning, SQ spokesperson Daniel Thibaudeau said he could not confirm the cause of death or speak to any possible links to organized crime.
Meanwhile, the investigation continues in Blainville.
Police have cordoned off the driveway where Di Maulo’s body was discovered. Officers accompanied by police dogs searched the area overnight, while a helicopter took aerial photos of the crime scene.
The city of Montreal has served as a backdrop for several Mafia-related clashes in recent years.
Reputed mob boss Vito Rizzuto returned to Canada in early October after serving five years in a Colorado prison on charges of racketeering and conspiracy.
While he served his sentence, which was related to the triple murder of three New York City Mafia members, both his father and son were murdered in Montreal.
The murders fueled speculation that the Montreal Mafia was in the middle of the power struggle, and provoked discussion about whether known members would be changing allegiances.
Di Maulo was allegedly involved in discussions with a group trying to reach a consensus over who should be controlling the Montreal Mafia, CTV Montreal’s Maya Johnson reported Monday.
“Is this a signal of some kind of power struggle? Are loyalties being tested here? It’s not clear,” she noted.