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The Valachi Papers - Chapter 3 Summary & Analysis

This Study Guide consists of approximately 30 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Valachi Papers.
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Italians do not invent organized crime in America, but they do perfect it. Their expertise is based on their background—their roots are mainly in Sicily and Neapolitan Camorra—where loyalty, contempt for law and talent for organization are all part of the culture. The first sign of Italian influence in the US criminal world is the emergence of the Black Hand extortionists who threaten the lives of the children of their fellow transplanted countrymen unless they pay up. Born in a poor, rough neighborhood of East Harlem, Valachi is exposed to criminal activity early in life. His own father pays $1 a week for protection. The Valachis live in bug-infested and filthy conditions.

At 18 years of age, Valachi becomes part of a burglary ring called the Minute Men. He usually drives the get-away car. This gang is responsible for hundreds of crimes between...

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This section contains 385 words
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