New England mob associate accused of lying to grand jury in strip club case

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A five-year-old federal case that decimated the ranks of the Rhode Island mob has reared its head again.

Mob associate Gaythorne “Poochie” Angell, 81, of East Greenwich, was indicted by a federal grand jury on a perjury charge. Prosecutors say Angell lied to a grand jury in 2011 when they were investigating a long-running extortion case where strip clubs were being shaken down for protection money.

The 2011 investigation into New England organized crime took down a score of key underworld players including the former mob boss Luigi “Baby Shacks” Manocchio. He was released from prison last year.

According to the indictment unsealed Wednesday, Angell appeared before a grand jury on June 3, 2011, to testify about what he knew of the extortion payments.

“It was material to the grand jury investigation to determine whether defendant Gaythorne Angell, a consultant and operator of a Rhode Island adult entertainment venue, The Foxy Lady, paid money to Edward C. Lato, a reputed member of the New England La Cosa Nostra,” prosecutor William Ferland wrote in the indictment.

A call to Angell’s attorney, Anthony Traini, was not immediately returned.

The indictment comes less than two weeks before the perjury charge would have expired because of the federal statute of limitations.

The indictment provided a transcript of some of the questioning Angell faced. During his testimony Angell was asked: “So it’s your testimony here today that Eddie Lato was not deriving money from the Fox Lady; is that right?”

Angell responded, “Correct,” according to the transcript.

Prosecutors say Angell knew the information was false because he was giving money from The Foxy Lady directly to Lato.

Lato, 69, formerly of Johnston, is currently serving a nine-year sentence for conspiracy and extortion. The Federal Bureau of Prisons website states he is at Fort Dix prison in New Jersey and is set to be released in July 2019.

Tim White ( twhite@wpri.com ) is the Target 12 investigative reporter and host of Newsmakers for WPRI 12 and Fox Providence. Follow him on Twitter and on Facebook

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