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Jimmy Galante Bio
Jimmy Galante also known as James, who was born on January 5, 1953, is a former CEO of Automated Waste Disposal (AWD), a business that has waste disposal contracts with most of western Connecticut and Westchester and Putnam counties in New York. He is also a convicted felon in the United States and a member of the Genovese crime family. Galante owned the defunct Danbury Trashers minor league hockey team and a racecar team that fielded cars for Ted Christopher.
Jimmy Galante admitted to tax evasion in 1999 and was given a sentence of 12 months and 1 day in federal prison. Jimmy Galante pleaded guilty to charges of racketeering, conspiring to commit wire fraud, and defrauding the Internal Revenue Service in June 2008. He was sentenced to between five and seven years in prison under federal sentencing guidelines, and he also lost control of 25 businesses involved in the disposal of waste that was valued at over $100 million. He served seven years until being freed in 2014.
Jimmy Galante, who operated 25 different garbage collection companies out of Danbury, Connecticut, was thought to be worth over $100 million. In western and southern Connecticut, as well as in Westchester and Putnam counties in New York, the companies handled 80% of the garbage hauling. They have been charged with stifling local competition since 1993 by using no-bid contracts and paying Genovese crime family leader Matthew “Matty the Horse” Ianniello up to $120,000 annually. Municipalities, companies, and citizens subsequently paid years of artificially increased carting prices.
Investigating and Prosecuting
In 2006, federal agents used an undercover agent to infiltrate Automated Waste Disposal and record hours of phone conversations. This led to a raid on James Galante’s house in New Fairfield, Connecticut, and the Danbury offices of AWD, where trailers full of records were taken. A 98-count indictment against Galante was released in June 2006, detailing how he divided up the garbage industry in western Connecticut and Putnam County and used mob power to intimidate any rivals who stood in his way.
Former Waterbury Mayor Joseph Santopietro, former Diversified Waste Division Manager and Genovese Crime Family enforcer Robert Taggett, federal Drug Enforcement Agent Louis Angioletti, a number of Galante’s lieutenants, and former Danbury Trashers hockey coach H. Todd Stirling were also charged as a result of the investigation.
James Galante was accused of violating numerous federal laws, including those relating to racketeering, racketeering conspiracy, Hobbs Act extortion, mail and wire fraud, witness tampering, tax fraud, and conspiracy, in 93 counts of the indictment. According to the indictment, Galante and other defendants planned to set fire to and abduct someone by holding the driver of a vehicle belonging to one of Galante’s rivals at gunpoint.
Authorities confirmed Ianniello received a $30,000 quarterly “mob tax” for his services as the 33 defendants in the case were summarily indicted and tried. Ianniello, like almost every other defendant in the case, pleaded guilty to racketeering and interfering with a federal grand jury investigation and was given a sentence of one and a half to two years in prison. Galante was charged in 2006 with paying Ianniello a “mob tax.”
Plea and Punishment
Jimmy Galante first pleaded not guilty, but in June 2008 he consented to a hearing for a change of plea. Galante admitted to defrauding the IRS by, among other things, writing double-checks for some employees and having them return one of them to him in cash, claiming the cost of hay and a wide-screen television that he bought for his girlfriend’s horse farm as a business expense, and stealing money from the register at the Danbury garbage transfer station.
As part of his agreement with the judge, Galante also consented to give the government his investment in 25 trash removal and recycling businesses and made a commitment never to return to that line of work “Withdraw” from “with any segment of the trash industry in the United States.” Galante’s 25 trash-disposal businesses, which were all situated in Danbury and had a combined value of $100 million in his estimation, were “condemned and forfeited to the United States of America.”
In accordance with statutes authorizing the forfeiture of property earned through criminal activity, the enterprises were sold, with the proceeds going to the United States Department of the Treasury.
Jimmy Galante will retain EnviroServices Inc., a waste collection, transfer, and disposal company in Virginia with subsidiaries in Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, West Virginia, and Kentucky. The government sold the companies, estimated to be worth $100 million, on the condition that they return $10.75 million to Galante as a portion of the more than $40 million in loans he and his wife made to the businesses over the years. Only $7.6 million was initially given to Galante. He was awarded the remaining $3.1 million despite charges that the government broke its plea deal.
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Jimmy Galante also consented to lose a horse farm he bought for an ex-girlfriend, as well as six race vehicles, a trailer, and $448,000 in cash that were confiscated by federal authorities in 2006. He was also ordered to pay the IRS at least $1.6 million in past taxes. He refused to acknowledge other offenses that federal investigators had initially charged him with, such as extortion, attempted arson, and kidnapping.
Danbury Trashers – United Hockey League
29 persons were charged with defrauding the United Hockey League in June 2006, including Jimmy Galante, former Trashers coach Todd Stirling, and Ianniello. By providing numerous players and their wives no-show jobs with AWD and disguising illegal payments as housing allowances, Stirling and Galante reportedly breached the UHL’s $275,000 per team wage cap. In connection with the submission of false weekly salary cap reports, Stirling was also charged with six counts of wire fraud.
The indictment states that the Trashers’ actual payroll was close to $750,000. The Trashers ceased operations and released their players in the wake of these accusations. Galante admitted admission to these charges in June 2008. In a different incident, Galante was accused of assaulting a UHL official in December 2004 during a match between the Trashers and the Kalamazoo Wings.
Putnam Victory Fund
Jimmy Galante was suspected of making a donation to a PAC (Political Action Committee) that helped multiple legislators launder money and maybe exploited that power to get contracts for Galante’s junk removal company. Willis Stephens, a former state assemblyman who also served as the Southeast, New York, town’s attorney, got more than $9,000 from Galante.
The town board subsequently granted Galante’s business a $1.5 million no-bid waste contract on Stephens’ advice. Raids on Putnam County Executive Robert Bondi’s office marked the end of the inquiry, but no charges were ever brought.
Louis DeLuca Scandal
In conjunction with Galante, former Connecticut State Senate Minority Leader Louis DeLuca entered a guilty plea to misdemeanor charges in 2007. DeLuca feared his granddaughter was being mistreated, therefore DeLuca had hired Galante to intimidate the woman’s husband. DeLuca allegedly agreed to protect Galante’s interests in exchange for substantial payments from Galante and his cronies.
A State Senate Committee was deliberating a suitable penalty for DeLuca as of November 2007. While receiving campaign contributions from Galante, other politicians from Connecticut, like U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman from Connecticut, were not associated with any of the acts taken on Galante’s behalf. DeLuca ended the probe on November 13 by announcing his retirement from the State Senate.
The Real Tony Soprano
James also known as Jimmy Galante was the king of garbage disposal and the brains behind the Danbury Trashers’ unlawful operation. Therefore, he did commit the crime and was held accountable for it.
The next step was to give his son AJ, a 17-year-old kid, his own hockey club since, in his own words, the boy was “the love of his life.”
Jimmy Galante served as the model for Tony Soprano in the HBO series and had ties to the Genovese crime family, which engaged in organized crime in New York and New Jersey. You might tell from this that the Danbury Trashers wouldn’t be your typical league team.
Its players gained a reputation as the bad boys by engaging in violent play during games and starting fights for thousands of dollars beneath the table. They were successful in their goal of dominating rivals both on and off the court since they controlled the UHL (United Hockey League).
While this was going on, it was discovered that his trash removal company was working with the mob to oust rivals and control the market in the surrounding neighborhoods. Jimmy enterprise had 25 disposal businesses in Connecticut and New York valued at more than $100 million at its height.
Where is Jimmy Galante Now?
In 2008, he was found guilty of racketeering, conspiring to commit wire fraud, and deceiving the IRS. He received a sentence of five to seven years in jail. He also had to give up his influence over the neighborhood’s waste disposal, which was reputedly worth millions of dollars. Additionally, he had to swear off working in the sector forever, which ultimately led to the fall of his empire.
Jimmy Galante was freed from prison in 2014 after serving seven years behind bars. When The Atlantic contacted him for a profile in May 2018, he said the only thing he was doing was “enjoying life.”
While his son, AJ, is no longer in control of the Danbury Trashers, it is stated that he has created a boxing club nearby and told The Atlantic that he is working to establish the region as a reputable boxing center in rivalry “with Oxnard, Calif.”
In fact, the Danbury Trashers disbanded as a group shortly after Galante’s imprisonment. The site claims that after his father was arrested, AJ lost control of the team because many of his belongings were also removed as assets that would be forfeited with Galante’s sentencing.
He claimed, “The United States government came in and seized my assets, and one of the assets was the team.”
It appears that the Galante family is no longer attempting to control a waste empire, and Danbury has fewer ties to organized crime.