Only carry a gun when needed, says informant at Montreal Mafia murder trial

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“If I carried my gun to beat someone and got caught by the police, I would have one more charge against me. Fools do this.”

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Only a fool carries a gun when ordered to brutalize someone, a former mafia hitman told a jury on Tuesday.

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The informant, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, is in his second week of cross-examination by defense lawyers in the trial of Marie-Josée Viau, 46, and Guy Dion, 49 , a couple from the rural town of Saint-Jude. The former hitman became a Sûreté du Québec informant in 2019 and said he killed Montreal Mafia boss Rocco Sollecito, in Laval in May 2016, and brothers Vincenzo and Giuseppe Falduto on June 30, 2016, in a garage on the couple’s farm.

The couple are charged with first degree murder and conspiracy to kill the Falduto brothers. They are not charged with the murder of Sollecito.

The informant told the hearing jury that he killed the three men on the orders of leaders of the Calabrian side of the Montreal Mafia, including Salvatore Scoppa. He said the Calabrians had sought to kill people on the Sicilian side of the Montreal Mafia throughout 2016.

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In addition to getting paid to kill Sollecito and the Falduto brothers, the informant said, he did other types of work for Scoppa in 2016.

It was in this context that defense lawyer Mylène Lareau asked the informant if he was carrying a gun while he was performing other tasks for the mafia boss.

“No. The only time I was armed was to kill. If I have a gun with me, it’s for two things; (to kill and) protect myself. If I carried a gun to beat someone and I got caught by the police, I would have one more charge against me, “the informant said.” Fools do that, like bikers. “

While providing details of a job he says he did for the Mafia boss in the summer of that year, the informant said Scoppa asked him to beat up a guy named Sergio in a bar on boulevard St-Laurent, near avenue du Mont Royal.

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“It was supposedly because he was selling cocaine on Sal’s back. But it was a story that didn’t hold up. It didn’t seem like the real story, ”the informant told the jury. “I didn’t want to participate,” he testified. “So Sal said, ‘Just protect me then. If I need you to stand up for me, get involved. And Sal hit him.

The informant said he later learned that the victim was supposed to pay Scoppa $ 2,000 a week, possibly to protect himself, and that she had not paid for some time.

“I didn’t want to get involved in this,” he said.

Defense lawyer Mylène Lareau asked the questions while trying to obtain details of the informant’s criminal past.

The informant said he wore a bulletproof vest for work, but disagreed with the suggestion that he committed a crime inside the bar.

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“When it started, we told people to be calm. We ordered drinks for everyone and told them to keep calm, that everything would be done quickly and inside the (bar), ”the informant said.

“So you threatened people,” Lareau asked.

“It wasn’t a threat. It’s a choice. I explained what was going to happen. If you do that, something will happen, ”the informant said.

“So it’s like a promise,” Lareau asked with a chuckle.

“It’s not a promise. A promise is something that can be broken. It’s a fact. If you leave (the bar) I have to do something. It’s an order.”

“So for you, it’s not a threat?” “

“No,” replied the informant. “Perhaps a threat means.”

Lareau asked the informant several questions about his relationship with an ex-girlfriend who he said sexually assaulted him and attempted to give him herpes. In August 2017, he was charged with threatening the woman and agreed to abide by a series of conditions in order to avoid being detained while his case was pending.

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One of the conditions he consented to was an order prohibiting him from owning a firearm. Lareau noted that, during his previous testimony, the informant claimed that during the month of October 2017, a man named Charlie Renda handed him a gun while he was still subject to the conditions. which had been imposed on him two months earlier. He described Renda as a man on the Sicilian side of the conflict who wanted a man who worked for Scoppa to be killed.

“So you did not meet this condition,” Lareau asked.

“Well, I also broke a condition that I don’t own a gun for the rest of my life (as part of a sentence from a previous conviction),” the informant said, also claiming that “technically” he had not broken the law because he did not get caught with the gun.

The trial will resume on Wednesday.

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  1. Salvatore Scoppa as seen in video recorded while under surveillance in Pierrefonds during the Project Premeditate SQ investigation as he met the informant in the murder trial of Marie-Josée Viau and Guy Dion.  The informant testified on Tuesday that he warned the SQ in early 2019 that Scoppa would be killed.  Photo: Court records

    Informant says he warned SQ that mafia boss Salvatore Scoppa would be killed

  2. Investigators collect evidence at the Sheraton Laval Hotel on May 5, 2019, after Salvatore Scoppa was shot and killed there.

    Salvatore Scoppa was not supposed to be killed in front of his children, informant says

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