(Phoenix, AZ—November 18, 2003) Notorious, self-professed Mafia hit man Salvatore "Sammy the Bull" Gravano and Debra Gravano were ordered to pay the State of Arizona $805,713.41 as reimbursement for court costs and investigative expenses relating to an earlier drug ring judgment. Attorney General Terry Goddard said that the monies were to reimburse the Phoenix Police Department and his office for actual costs involved in the investigation of the Gravano drug ring, plus reasonable attorneys fees to reimburse his office for prosecutors to combat organized crime and drug dealing. A final order of judgment for the $805,713 was entered against the Gravanos, jointly and severally, by the Maricopa County Superior Court on November 5, 2003.
The Gravanos were arrested and indicted in early 2000, when an investigation into the market for MDMA, or Ecstasy, revealed that the Gravanos were major players in Arizona’s drug scene. In October, 2002, “Sammy the Bull” Gravano was sentenced to 19 years in prison after he pled guilty to 10 felony charges: conspiracy to sell dangerous drugs; participating in a criminal syndicate; illegal enterprise; money laundering; weapons misconduct; and use of electronic communication in a drug related transaction.
Debra Gravano pled guilty to one count of illegally conducting an enterprise for which she is serving five years of supervised probation. She was active in the smuggling of ecstasy, serving as the "banker" for her family that operated the enterprise, and knew that the money she was "banking" was used for the purchase of ecstasy. That enterprise removed approximately $1 million out of Arizona’s legitimate economy in exchange for illegal drugs, and caused additional substantial losses in health, public safety, and welfare expenses, including damaging persons who used the drugs.
The investigation was conducted by the Phoenix Police Department and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, with assistance from the Gilbert Police Department and the Arizona Department of Public Safety. This most recent judgment brings to more than $2 million the judgments obtained by the State against the Gravanos, including an unspecified amount from royalties from Sammy’s book Underboss. Total judgments include:
- "Order Re: Forfeiture of UNDERBOSS Royalties and Related Property That Is Proceeds of Racketeering" entered on October 26, 2001. Sammy’s attorney has recently requested the noted States Supreme Court to overturn that order, and to review the judgment of the Supreme Court of Arizona denying review of the Arizona Court of Appeals Opinion that affirmed the trial court order of forfeiture.
- "Final Order of Monetary Judgment Against Salvatore Gravano in the Amount of $88,552 As Attorney Fees Re Order Forfeiting Book Royalties & Other Proceeds Of Racketeering Re UNDERBOSS " entered on January 30, 2002.
- "Final Order of Monetary Judgment Against Salvatore Gravano & Debra Gravano, Jointly & Severally, in the Amount of $933,750" entered on June 2, 2003. Debra’s attorney has appealed, requesting the Arizona Court of Appeals to overturn this judgment.
- The most recent "Final Order of Monetary Judgment Against Salvatore Gravano & Debra Gravano, Jointly & Severally, in the Amount of $805,713.41" entered on November 5, 2003.