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Grumpy Old Men: Senior Citizen Mobsters Sentenced to Nine Years

Joseph Scalise, 74, is a man with a lot of history. Both Scalise, and his co-defendant, Bobby Pullia, 71, are alleged members of an organized crime family. They will also both spend most of the next nine years in prison after a botched robbery and foiled plot to rob an armored car, reports the Chicago Tribune.

A third co-defendant, Arthur Rachel, 74, was already tried and found guilty for the crimes and was sentenced to eight-and-a-half years. Scalise and Pullia pled guilty earlier this year.

Back in 1980, Rachel and Scalise allegedly were behind the theft of the 45-carat Marlborough Diamond. They each served 13 years, though the loot from the larceny was never recovered.

Years later, the trio of gentlemen was caught outside of the home of deceased mobster Angelo “The Hook” LaPietra. They were reportedly hoping that LaPietra had a cache of jewels or valuables in his home. The trio also plotted an armored car robbery in the suburbs.

That’s a lot of dangerous physical labor for three septuagenarians.

Judges are given some latitude in prescribing sentences. Though a plea bargain was reached in this case, there was still a range of sentences that the duo could have received. According to CBS Chicago, the judge gave them the most lenient sentence possible under the circumstances.

Things often considered in sentencing include the defendants’ prior criminal records and contribution to society. The prosecutor correctly pointed out that the duo had extensive records and no positive contribution to society whatsoever. The judge, however, showed them eight months of mercy due to their age.

“When you get to be in your 70s, a year is more valuable,” stated U.S. District Judge Harry D. Leinenweber.

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