Retired Construction Boss Doubts Existence of Mafia at Quebec Corruption Inquiry

Quebec’s corruption inquiry recorded the testimony of a businessman, who is described as the intermediary between organized crime, local politicians and the construction industry, but claimed to have never heard of any Mafia. The retired construction boss, Nicolo Milioto, returned to the stand for the second day at the inquiry today.

Mr. Milioto alleged that he is not aware of any existing Mafia or how it works and that he couldn’t define the Cosa Nostra if he tried. Milioto, codenamed as “Mr. Sidewalk” by one witness, alleged during the testimony that he has never heard of a pizzo, i.e. a Mafia tax, being paid in the country. Milioto was scrutinized by commission chair, France Charbonneau, to which he asserted to have not been aware of omerta as well, which is the code of keeping silence and a rule of not alerting the authorities. Milioto has been reportedly labeled as a key player in the corrupt system, as he is assumed as a person linking the Mafia, a major municipal political party and certain parts of the construction industry.

Even the police confirmed that Milioto was seen almost 236 times at a famous Mafia hangout in east-end Montreal, i.e. Cafe Consenza. When inquired about the knowledge of Nicolo Rizzuto Sr. and his son Vito Rizzuto, Milioto stated to have read about them in the newspapers and heard about their organized crime on television. Milioto alleged that “What is the Mafia? It’s difficult to define.”

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