The Mafia or Cosa Nostra (in Italian) is a criminal organization that started in Sicily. There are many little criminal groups associated with this that have the same structure and order. Following waves of Italian immigrants coming to the US in the 19th century, including some of those immigrants having ties to the mob is how the American Italian Mafia got it's start. In New York, there were five families, almost like the 1971 movie The Godfather, only the real Five Families didn't have the names in the Godfather. The REAL Five Families that ruled New York for years with an iron fist were The Gambinos, The Genovese, Luccese, Bonanno and Columbo. Almost 90% of all Mafia activity is confined to the Northwest, around Chicago and New York.
The word Mafia applies to not just Italians, but also Chinese Mafia(Triads), Japanese Mafia(Yakuza), Russian Mafia, Irish Mafia, Mexican and Jewish Mob. When the Racketerring Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) was applied to federal law, this made it easier to prosecute mobsters and mob families. In 1991, when Sammy 'The Bull' Gravano decided to cooperate with the FBI and turn state's evidence, they were able to convict top Mafia leaders in New York.
- Omerta- code of silence. Never talk to authorities
- Ethnicity- only men of full Italian descent are allowed to become full members. Associates, partners, etc have no ethnic ban
- Family Secrets- Members are not allowed to talk about business to non-family members
- Blood for Blood- If a family member is killed(by another member) no one can commit murder(for revenge) until the boss gives the go ahead
- No fighting among members- from fist fights to knife fights
- Tribute- every month, members must pay the boss
- Adultery- members are not allowed to commit adultery with another family member's wife
- No facial hair- members are not allowed to grow facial hair.
- For allowing Joseph D. Pistone to go undercover in the Bonnano crime family, caporegime Dominic 'Sonny Black' Napolitano had his hands severed after he was killed.
- In the murder of Luccese crime family soldier Bruno Facciolo, a dead canary was stuffed into his mouth after he was shot.
- New York
- New Jersey
- Scarfo crime family
- Bufolina crime family
- New England
- Patriarcha crime family
- Southern US
- Trafficante crime family- Florida
-The Godfather and the Godfather pt. II, loosely based on the Genovese crime family
-Donnie Brasco- based on the story of FBI agent Joseph D. Pistone and how Dominic 'Sonny Black' Napolitano took him under his wing in the Bonnano crime family.
-Joseph 'Joey' Abate- Luccese
-Frank 'Fingers' Abbandando Jr- Gambino
-Salvatore 'Sammy Meatballs' Aparo- Genovese
-Joseph 'Piney' Armone- Gambino
-Al 'Scarface' Capone- Chicago Outfit
-Anthony 'Gaspipe' Casso- Luccese
-Louis 'Louie Bagels' Daidone- Luccese
-Paul 'Big Paul' Castellano- Gambino