Montreal Mafia clan under siege

Another Rizzuto associate gunned down in broad daylight

For years, the Rizzuto clan in Montreal ruled the country’s criminal underworld. But a changing of the guard is clearly underway. Vito Rizzuto—the reputed godfather of the crime organization—is serving a 10-year prison sentence in the United States for racketeering. His son, Nick, was murdered in December, and his brother-in-law, Paolo Renda, remains missing after being abducted near his home in May. And yesterday, outside a food-distribution company in St. Leonard, long-time Rizzuto associate Agostino Cuntrera was shot dead in a drive-by hit. (Another man, reportedly Cuntrera’s bodyguard, was also killed). Cuntrera was sentenced in 1978 to five years in prison for his role in a conspiracy to murder Calbrian Mafia don Paulo Violi, which allowed the Sicilian clan led by the Rizzutos to gain control of Montreal. Before yesterday’s shooting, Cuntrera had reportedly assumed more of a leadership role in the organization. “He was known in the community, you know,” said one person lingering near the crime scene. “He was known as a good guy.”

Montreal Gazette