Second government witness at stake in federal loan sharking lawsuit against Anthony Scibelli
SPRINGFIELD – For the first time since Anthony J. Scibelli was arrested and charged in July with being a heavyweight to a local loan shark, a federal prosecutor referred to a second witness against the accused at a hearing preliminary in a United States district court.
Scibelli, 51, of Springfield, has been charged with assaulting a debtor who took out a $ 5,000 street loan in 2016 and, although he made about $ 30,000 in “vig” payments in 2019, was beaten after falling behind this summer, investigators said.
The unnamed “Confidential human source” because the FBI became frustrated with his lingering debt – which he said didn’t make mathematical sense – and surrendered to the Massachusetts State Police Organized Crime Unit in the spring after Scibelli and others began harassing his family, according to court records.
The source carried a wire to Scibelli and others for more than 30 hours, lawyers in the case said, including twice when he forgot to turn it off and fell asleep.
Of the 30 hours of audio, much of it was “sleep time” or “open mic,” U.S. Deputy Prosecutor Marianne Shelvey told an examining magistrate.
“Was that the one where the recorder was accidentally left on?” US trial judge Katherine Robertson asked Shelvey.
“Yes. And then it happened again,” Shelvey replied.
The prosecutor told Robertson that she provided defense attorney Nikolas Andreopoulos with the confidential informant’s criminal record, as well as that of a second government witness. Shelvey did not provide further details about the second witness in open court.
Particularly relevant parts of the recordings in the case focus on the informant’s discussions with Scibelli about his debt and the informant’s objective to speak with “Albert”, or condemned usurer Albert Calvanese, which Scibelli rejected on several occasions. The informant is only labeled “Victim 1” in court documents.
Excerpt from a June 4 transcript of recorded conversations offered by the government:
Victim 1: “I’m going to have to have some money. I am putting it together.
That day, Scibelli demands that the money the witness has in his pockets pass it on to the person Scibelli is responding to, and briefly nods his hand.
“I don’t want to be in the middle of this. I would like you to take care of them and stay away from them, ”he said, according to the transcript.
Victim 1: “I’ll give you $ 200 right away. And I’ll give you more.
And later in the conversation, Scibelli said, “Can you just find something so that I don’t have to take care of you anymore?” Dealing with them… I don’t want to take care of Albert.
Victim 1: “Yeah, but I tried to manage… listen. “
Scibelli: “He doesn’t want to hear anything. You owe him money. That’s it.”
Calvanese was sentenced in 2007 to five years in federal prison and ordered to forfeit $ 800,000 in usurious loan proceeds in connection with beating a debtor over $ 20,000. He has not been charged in this case.
Springfield Police Department records and a redacted copy of a 911 call obtained by The Republican show a family member of the “confidential human source” called police on July 2, reporting that “men de main ”had come to her house. Men were knocking on her door and honking their horns in her driveway, the woman said. It had happened more than once, she said.
“Does your brother owe these men any money?” Asked a dispatcher.
“You know what? That’s a good question,” she replied.
Scibelli was arrested later the same day. He recently won a motion to relax the conditions of his house arrest include weekly Sunday mass at the church in front of the parking lot where he allegedly beat the main government witness.
Another pre-trial conference is scheduled for November 26.