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Last Updated: Wednesday, 13 October, 2004, 13:27 GMT 14:27 UK
'Mafia remains' unearthed in NYC
Investigators at 'mob graveyard'
Investigators have been digging at the site since early October
Investigators in New York believe they have unearthed the remains of two mafia captains killed by rivals in 1981.

Bones and belongings buried in marshy wasteland in New York's Queens borough appear to belong to Dominick Trinchera and Philip Giaccone, sources said.

The two men were killed at the height of a power struggle within the Bonanno crime family, court hearings revealed.

Bonanno clan boss Joseph Massino was convicted of several counts of murder and racketeering earlier this year.

He is due to be sentenced shortly.

Disposal experts

At his trial, former Bonanno bosses said that Massino ordered the killings of Trinchera, Giaccone and a third captain, Alphonse Indelicato.

The men were gunned down in a Brooklyn social club amid suspicions they were planning to take over the leadership of the Bonnano empire while its then-chief, Philip Rastelli, was in prison.

Massino's trial also heard how men from the Gambino crime family - headed by Massino's childhood friend, John "Dapper Don" Gotti - were recruited to dispose of the corpses.

Children playing near the wasteland found Indelicato's body in 1981 but further excavations at the time did not yield any more finds.

Gotti link

But investigators have been digging at the wasteland site near John F Kennedy airport since early October, apparently acting on a tip from informers.

Police officials quoted by the New York Times say the discovery of an expensive watch and a 23-year-old bank card strongly suggests the site holds the remains of Trinchera and Giaccone.

However, it will be some weeks before DNA tests on the skeletal remains can confirm their origin.

Officials believe the site could also be the final resting place of John Favara, a New York man who went missing after he ran over one of Gotti's sons in a road accident.

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