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Very few have walked away from the mob and lived to tell the tale our next guest grew up and what -- New York's most notorious and violent crime families so what made him give up a life of crime let's bring in Michael frenzies whose former Colombo Crime Family captain.
Capital and -- apple was -- Cup regime -- -- captain.
What's the worst thing he ever did.
Listen it's it's a violent life and if you called upon to do something unfortunately part of -- -- part of the violence -- it's it's it's part of it.
And your dad was in this in this lead was the under -- of the Colombo is back in the sixties and really -- to a prison time.
So was there ever any question that this was the path that you would follow -- yeah I mean originally my dad didn't want this from me -- I was actually premed student Hofstra University when my dad to a fifty year prison sentence with defense.
I got -- -- Joseph Colombo and in life started to change at that point.
So you go from being a med student.
To working your way up the rungs of the -- in the Colombo.
Mob family try to transition I'll say this I'll say so what's that like as you as your -- how do you get how do you move up in that in that.
-- -- you know you look if -- and learn and you -- shouted move into the top and basically I was fortunate I had had a head for business and I knew how to use that life to benefit -- in business.
With the morning comes of tolerance you know -- I started to move up -- worried that you yourself.
Would be a target.
Well I was always a target.
-- -- You know to federal law racketeering indictments.
Indictment in Florida I was indicted actually six or seven times I don't -- I don't mean a target of law enforcement I mean it's target.
Toyota folks in your world you know you're you're always worried about that could mean you know with with success it's kind of a double edged -- when you know you're always gonna worry on the -- so you -- from both sides but it's just part of life for -- to deal with it and it's it's it's normal actually and the law finally caught up with -- -- And what happened.
-- after beating a number of indictments actually beat Giuliani 84 on a big racketeering indictment and -- district came after me on this big gas tax scam case -- I was involved in.
And I decided -- take a plea on that once oil output to ten years ahead of fifteen million dollar restitution 5000004 pitchers.
I've -- a young woman at that point that is now my wife of 28 years and decided to try to throw in the towel and just walk away so.
And you found god you found religion -- -- you talk about that now.
Do you miss it though do you miss the life.
I mean there's things about it -- -- -- you know mostly be the camaraderie had with the guys assuming you know some of those who pretty tight knit and it's.
There's something very attractive about this brotherhood conscious you know you know when I came into life and took -- -- that -- Mike.
Where do you go on a world don't worry it will be a brother there to protect you back to worry about your way if you more than his sister you know we'll always said because it.
That's powerful stuff and you know to me that was the most attractive thing about the life it's what I miss the most.
And you said that most of those folks are now either dead.
Or in prison for the rest of their lives.
Fortune magazine had a big article fifty biggest and most powerful mob forces in the country and actually -- chart with a fifty of us on there and I was number eighteen on the list I was five behind -- yeah.
Youngest guy analyst.
Not import how to make a list like that I always sit -- that's my tax returns but -- The important thing about that's rhetoric is out of that list of 5044.
Of them -- dead.
Three -- dorm life in prison without parole and around here it is you know talk to you.
I -- ask you were too quick break why you think we are so fascinated to this day.
With the mafia don't talk about your series as well we'll have more with Michael -- right after this we're joined once again by Michael frenzies as a former Colombo family crime captain.
Here in New York City what's the biggest misconception.
That people have and were also fascinated by these stories that involve the mafia whether it's the godfather movies -- The Sopranos series are following the Whitey Bulger trial.
But what are we what should we know that we don't about this life.
Well you know do this.
People don't understand that life is very destructive I mean I don't know.
One family and I remember that life that hasn't been totally destroyed including my -- up my wife and kids -- that spared them that put.
Mother father Brothers sisters I mean totally devastated as true of every family -- remember that life.
For some reason people see the money to power the prestige the way guys carry themselves and they think -- this is charmed life.
But it's not.
And how powerful.
Is the mob today.
You know I'm not nearly as powerful as the wasn't my day you know seventies and eighties when we had control of the unions you know -- thing is we've we.
Survived and prospered in this country over a hundred years under some very difficult conditions -- the reason we did that is because we infiltrated every fabric of society.
From politics right down to minutes of the street level.
And these other criminal groups out there if you take -- the drug business from them they'll collapse but we were into everything controlled unions control the -- We had many politicians that you don't that that there are bidding.
And you know we just had a way we -- how to get around people and it was I was very powerful.
Well I'm glad you got out of it.
And -- -- talked to us about this.
And we should let people know that the show inside the American -- premieres this Sunday.
July the 28 it's on at nine and 10 PM eastern time.
On the National Geographic channel is a fascinating look inside -- world that most of us will never ever know Michael frenzies thank you so much just for.
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