April 24, 2021 – Veteran Boston wiseguy Johnny Cincotti died last week at 81. He was stricken with Alzheimer’s Disease. A staple in Boston’s North End for decades, the well-liked and congenial Cincotti owned and operated out of the acclaimed Bella Napoli Italian restaurant.
Cincotti was living in Wayland, Massachusetts at the time of his death. His last prison sentence came to a close almost 25 years ago (1997). He was busted twice by the feds on illegal gambling and racketeering offenses.
Cincotti’s mentor in the Patriarca crime family was Ralph (Ralphie Chong) Lamattina. He helped Lamattina (d. 2017) run the Nite Lite Cafe and Enrico’s Social Club, a pair of North End gambling hot spots. In the 1970s and 80s, Cincotti oversaw several backroom casinos and dice games operating in the North End on behalf of powerful Boston mob figures Jerry Angiulo (d. 2009) and Larry Zannino (d. 1996). Angiulo was the Patriarca’s underboss. Zannino was the capo both Lamattina and Cincotti reported to.
Cincotti was present behind the bar when Ralphie Chong and Zannino murdered two rogue racketeers (Arthur “Tash” Bratsos and “Tommy D” DePrisco) inside the Nite Lite Cafe on November 15, 1966. Police officers arrived on the scene of the double homicide (the bodies were stuffed in DePrisco’s Cadillac) to find Lamattina and Cincotti on their hands and knees frantically scrubbing the bloodstains off the establishment’s entryway.
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