Enrico Ponzo: Reputed Boston mobster on trial after 16 years in hiding

Enrico Ponzo's booking photo. Credit: FBI.
Enrico Ponzo faces racketeering, drug trafficking, witness tampering and conspiracy charges. Credit: FBI

After vanishing more than 16 years ago, Boston gangster Enrico Ponzo is on trial in federal court on charges of attempted murder and racketeering.

The suspected La Cosa Nostra member, 44, had been living quietly as “Jeffrey John Shaw,” a stay-at-home father and rancher in rural southwest Idaho for nearly a decade until he was arrested in 2011. His trial began at Moakley Federal Court last week, according to the Associated Press.

“It was almost unbelievable,” farmer Bob Briggs told the AP. “People couldn’t understand why and what for and how come.”

Briggs was reportedly talking about hay with Ponzo when he was arrested.

In January, Ponzo was charged with 18 counts of racketeering, drug trafficking, witness tampering and conspiracy charges, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Boston.

Federal prosectors have also accused Ponzo of the 1991 attempted murder of Patriarca crime family boss Francis “Cadillac Frank” Salemme in a bid for control of organized crime in the Boston area.

If convicted, Ponzo could face life in prison.

Follow Morgan Rousseau on Twitter: @MetroMorgan
Follow Metro Boston on Twitter: @MetroBOS


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