Court to Hear From Reputed Mobsters' Attorneys

Circuit Court of Appeals will listen to arguments on requests for a new trial

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    Joseph "Joey the Clown" Lombardo

    An appellate court in Chicago will hear from attorneys for reputed mobsters convicted in 2007's Family Secrets trial.

    The U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals will listen to arguments Monday on their requests for a new trial.

    Family Secrets Verdict

    [CHI] Family Secrets Verdict
    Sept. 10, 2007: A federal jury in Chicago returns guilty verdicts on all counts, including key racketeering and conspiracy charges, against all five defendants in the historic Family Secrets mob case. (Published Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2009)

    A jury convicted the men, including reputed mob boss James Marcello and Joseph "Joey the Clown" Lombardo, of racketeering conspiracy that included 18 murders.

    Those convictions are credited with helping to weaken Chicago's mob.

    Nick Calabrese Gets 12 Years

    [CHI] Nick Calabrese Gets 12 Years
    A man who admitted to 14 murders -- and helped the feds build a case against his fellow mobsters -- gets a far lighter sentence than the men he testified against. (Published Friday, March 27, 2009)

    But their attorneys say their clients didn't get a fair trial. In one court filing, Marcello's lawyer argued that by ordering the jury to remain anonymous the judge created prejudice in jurors' minds.

    Defense lawyers have complained in this and other cases that keeping names secret signals to jurors that the suspects on trial are dangerous and probably guilty.