Monday, March 6, 2023

“I’ve murdered. I’ve beaten. I’ve robbed." - Anthony Arillotta

Twenty years ago, Anthony J. Arillotta stood at the bottom of a makeshift grave he and two other gangsters had spent hours digging. They labored in a wooded lot at the behest of mob boss Adolfo 'Big Al' Bruno in the fall of 2003. Arillotta was on the edges of a mob coup. The grave could have become the resting place for any number of thugs.

Arillotta betrayed his oath to the mob, testifying in two murder trials in 2011 and 2012. He spent eight years in witness protection while in prison, then cut ties with the program and returned to his hometown in 2017. Arillotta has joined other former mobsters trying to parlay their celebrity. Arillota explains his 'squeal point' and why he turned rat. “That was my squeal point. My squeal point was life,” Arillotta said of his move. “I got caught cheating (on his ex-wife). I was facing the death penalty, and I had to make a decision.”
“I’ve murdered. I’ve beaten. I’ve robbed. What else is there realistically for me to do, professionally, in this area?” he asks. Fotios 'Freddy' Geas and Emilio Fusco were part of a power play Arillotta was involved in. The pair later became his codefendants in the murder and racketeering prosecution that eviscerated the mob in Springfield. They were convicted of murdering both Bruno and Arillotta’s brother-in-law, Gary D. Westerman, the man who ended up in the grave they dug.