Peter Gerace Jr., a high profile figure in the notorious Buffalo Mafia, was arrested at a hotel room in Fort Lauderdale after being indicted on bribing a DEA agent, human trafficking, and drug dealing by a federal grand jury in Buffalo, NY.
Peter owns a gentleman’s club, Pharaohs, in the Buffalo area. The unsealed indictment details how Pharaohs was a hub for human and drug trafficking in a decade-long operation. The club was raided by the feds back in 2019.
Joseph Bongiovanni was a DEA agent who allegedly accepted $250,000 in bribes to “protect the establishment.” He pleaded not guilty to these charges.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Brendan Cullinane, the indictment charges Gerace Jr. with five separate crimes. These include bribery of a federal official, manufacturing and distributing narcotics, human trafficking at least 40 people, and conspiracy.
If convicted, Gerace Jr. could face a maximum of 15 years for bribing a DEA agent, 20 years for drug trafficking, and 15 years minimum for human trafficking.
Federal prosecutors and the defense reportedly reached a deal that would allow Gerace Jr. to walk free with no bond.
Magistrate Judge Alicia Valle found the deal unusual.
“This was an interesting case, but for the government’s recommendation you’d think detention would be warranted,” Valle said.
Gerace Jr. is to avoid the strip club that he owns and refrain from contacting his ex-wife, Katrina Nigro, as part of the conditions of his release. Nigro allegedly told the Buffalo News that she testified to a grand jury against him on Monday.
“I’m gonna try to get a nonstop flight out of here,” Gerace told the Judge as she approved his release.
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