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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Up Against the Mob

Available on Apple Podcasts / Podcasts

Michael Visconti became a member of the Genovese family, one of the oldest families in the American Mafia, after he threatened to “beat the shit out of Joey Colombo Jr.,” the son of one of the ring’s prominent leaders. The Colombo family admired his moxie, and welcomed him in like a son. In the first episode of Cafe’s new podcast, Up Again the Mob, the series’s host, Elie Honig, a former assistant attorney for the Southern District of New York, talks to Visconti about life in the mafia and how the F.B.I. eventually flipped him to become a cooperating witness. Host and guest go way back—Honig worked with Visconti to bust mafia members. The show includes evidence used in the prosecution, such as audio from a wire-taped F.B.I. informant. Visconti offers earnest advice to listeners—just in case you find yourself suddenly embroiled in an organized crime ring—and, quite charmingly, speaks as if Francis Ford Coppola is feeding him lines. It’s an in-depth look into a clandestine life that “ain’t what it’s cracked up to be.” —J.D.

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