Mob enforcer could face life on gun charge - New York News

Mob enforcer could face life on gun charge

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CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

Mob enforcer Mario Rainone faces at least 15 years behind bars after a federal jury Wednesday found him guilty on a gun charge, the Sun-Times is reporting.

The 60-year-old faces a potential life term for what otherwise might have been a relatively minor gun conviction because of his lengthy rap sheet, which earned him Armed Career Criminal status.

Jurors took just two hours to reject Rainone's claims that the stolen .357 Smith & Wesson revolver police found in a nightstand in his Addison home back in February 2009 wasn't his.

Rainone — who served 15 years for a 1991 extortion conviction; allegedly threatened to decapitate a restaurateur's children; and spent time in the federal witness protection program — showed no emotion as Judge Harry Leinenweber announced the verdict Wednesday afternoon.

His attorney, Joe "The Shark" Lopez, unsuccessfully tried to convince jurors that the gun might have been placed in the bedroom by someone else.

Following the verdict, he added that the "feds have a 98 percent conviction rate because federal rules guarantee it."

Rainone is due to be sentenced June 5. He faces a minimum of 15 years and a maximum of life.

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