EX-MAFIA BOSS ANTHONY CASSO DESCRIBES MURDERS
HE SAYS HE PAID NYPD DETECTIVES TO SET UP OR COMMIT
FOR HIM, IN HIS ONLY INTERVIEW � �60 MINUTES� SUNDAY
Casso Names Indicted Retired Cops Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa
In what could be the city�s worst case of police corruption ever, one-time Mafia boss Anthony (Gas Pipe) Casso describes two murders he says he paid New York detectives Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa to set up or commit � crimes for which the two former officers have recently been indicted. Casso�s interview with Ed Bradley, the only one the former Lucchese family under-boss has ever given, will be broadcast on 60 MINUTES Sunday April 10 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
Casso�s outrageous allegations � vehemently denied by Bruce Cutler, Eppolito�s lawyer, and Caracappa�s counsel, Ed Hayes -- came out in a prison interview with Bradley in 1998, but could not be substantiated. 60 MINUTES could not broadcast those allegations until now, with the highly decorated Eppolito and Caracappa under indictment. Casso says he paid the two detectives to set up the 1986 murder of Jimmy Hydell that he committed himself because he thought Hydell tried to kill him. �Louie [Eppolito] and Steve [Caracappa] �make believe they�re going to arrest [Hydell]. They put him in the car�an unmarked car. I gave them a car. The kid thought they were taking him to the station house, but they took him to a garage,� he tells Bradley. �They laid him on the floor�tied his feet, his hands�put him in the trunk,� says Casso. The detectives then handed Hydel over to him, says Casso. �The guy�s kicking in the trunk�making noise. I took him to�somebody�s house that I could use [and] sat him down. I wanted to know why I was shot�and who, you know, gave the orders to shoot me. After that, I killed the kid myself.�
Casso says he didn�t shoot Hydell in the head because �that was somebody�s house. You make a mess,� he tells Bradley. �I shot him a couple times. I didn�t torture the kid. I didn�t do anything like that.� Pressed by Bradley, Casso admits he shot Hydell many times. �Maybe I shot him 10 times, 12 times. It coulda been 15.� Eppolito and Caracappa were well paid for the job, according to Casso. �I gave Louis and Steve, I think, $45,000 for delivering him to me,� says Casso. That was over and above their usual $4,000 per month salary for tipping him off on police investigations and providing other secret information, say New York prosecutors. And Casso says the two detectives would have killed Hydell if he didn�t. �Well, they wanted to kill for me,� Casso says, �I didn�t even have to do it.�
The two detectives did kill for him, says the former mob boss, now serving a life sentence for confessing to 36 murders. Hydell�s was one of eight murders Casso says Eppolito and Caracappa either aided or actually committed for him. They shot to death a crime family associate named Eddie Lino in 1990, says Casso, this time for even more money. �I gave them $75,000. They killed [Lino], like, cowboy style,� recalls Casso. �They pulled alongside of him. They shot him. They made him crash into the fence alongside the Belt Parkway�.Then Steve got out of the car, ran across the street and finished shooting him, fnished killing him in the car,� he tells Bradley.
New York prosecutors believe Casso and cite corroborating evidence in their indictment of the detectives for eight murders in connection with Casso. But they do admit Casso has lied as a federal witness before and lawyers for the detectives say that�s what he�s doing now. �I can�t think of a riskier thing to do. It�s the Belt Parkway,� says Hayes. �So it seems like almost a movie version of a crime�.You can see Casso making it up,� he tells Bradley. The crime did happen that way, allows Hayes, but �[Caracappa] says he didn�t [kill Nino].�
Attorney Bruce Cutler says the allegations defy common sense. �Why would somebody who went up the ladder in the police department, received awards for bravery�why would you besmirch and tarnish everything you stand for�to do the bidding of a reprobate like Casso?� asks Cutler. All the allegations are lies, he says. �I can�t give you the motive [for Casso lying],� says Cutler. �I never could understand it�witnesses like Casso, who want to get out from under, blame others,� the lawyer tells Bradley.
Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes can�t understand it either; he says he�s never seen anything like this. �No. I�ve seen organized corruption cases, but the allegation of two cops being hit men � in addition to giving up people for a hit � just absolutely shocking,� says Hynes.