Junior Gotti Granted Freedom

John "Junior" Gotti

John "Junior" Gotti

John “Junior” Gotti has been granted his freedom after paying $2 million in bail money, after the jury was unable to come to a verdict. This is the fourth hung jury in five years in the Gotti case.

The son of the Gambino crime family was on trial for racketeering-related charges. Prosecutors did not say if Gotti will be tried again. One juror said it would be abusive to bring the charges again.

The government linked Gotti to a string of murders in the 1980’s and 1990’s, which is what this latest trial was about. He was also linked to drug trafficking crimes. Gotti has been denying the charges, claiming he quit the mob more than a decade ago.

The anonymous jurors deliberated for 11 days before telling the judge they were unable to agree over racketeering conspiracy and murder charges. Prosecutors say the Gotti had been secretly pocketing drug money and ordering hits, despite Gotti’s insistence that he had gone straight.

Shortly after 3 p.m. Tuesday, the jury sent U.S. District Judge Kevin P. Castel a note that read: ”Judge Castel, we cannot reach a unanimous decision on any count. We are deadlocked. There is not one member of the jury who believes that we can reach a unanimous verdict on any count.”

Once Judge Castel notified the jury that he was declaring a mistrial, applause erupted in the courtroom, which was filled with Gotti supporters.

Victoria Gotti, John “Junior” Gotti’s sister, tearfully said outside court: ”We’re ravaged. We’re beaten down, but we’re not broken.” Asked about a possibility of another trial, she said: ”Just let it go. We’re no organized crime family. We’re a family. That’s all we are.”

Gotti’s last three trials, where he was accused of orchestrating a kidnapping and an attempted murder plot against Guardian Angels founder Curis Sliwa, also ended with hung juries.

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