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Joseph Michael Valachi

Joseph Michael Valachi is born in Brooklyn, New York, of Italian immigrant parents. As a teenager, he becomes involved in the Italian crime underworld that will later become known as the Cosa Nostra. Valachi has good survival instincts as his career in the Italian syndicate endures for over thirty years—an unusually long tenure as scores of his cohorts in the crime world are executed by their own.

Valachi is also fortunate to escape serving much time behind bars for the majority of his career. During his time with the mob, he is involved in thirty murders—although he never pulls the trigger or tightens the wire around a neck. Surprisingly, soldiers in the Cosa Nostra are able to operate independently in earning illegal incomes. The only caveats are that they get permission from their lieutenants and cut their bosses in on the...

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