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7:35 am
Fri January 21, 2011

2 RI men charged in FBI mob bust

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Two Rhode Island men are among 127 people arrested in what the FBI is calling one of the largest crackdowns on organized crime in U.S. history.


The suspects are reputed New England crime boss Luigi Manocchio, who has homes in Providence and Florida and Thomas Iafrate of Johnston. They're accused of shaking down strip clubs for protection.


U.S. attorney for Rhode Island Peter Neronha says the arrest strikes a blow to organized crime in New England.


"If you accept the fact that there is someone who is the head of the family and you cut off the head of the family then obviously you have an impact," Neronha says. "That is not to say someone will not fill the vacuum but the idea is to keep the pressure on. To disrupt."

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Neronha says the suspects threatened violence if the money wasn't paid.