A 68-year-old Atlantic City man was sentenced to 12½ years in prison for possessing more than 200 grams of crystal methamphetamine and for staging a fake robbery of a Union County pawnshop in an insurance scam, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said Thursday.
Salvatore “Sam” Piccolo, a member of the Philadelphia mafia, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Robert B. Kugler to distributing more than 50 grams of meth and one count of wire fraud, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito said in a news release.
Piccolo will be 80 when he is released if he serves his entire term of 150 months.
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According to Carpenito, Piccolo distributed meth to undercover FBI agents on three separate occasions between June and September 2017. On one occasion, Piccolo sold the undercover agent about 4 ounces of meth in a restaurant parking lot in Sicklerville, Camden County, in exchange for $5,660 in cash.
On two other occasions in September 2017, undercover FBI agents purchased 2-ounce quantities of meth from Piccolo in Atlantic City for $2,800 each.
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Piccolo also admitted that on April 19, 2014, he and an accomplice conspired to commit insurance fraud. They entered a pawn shop in Union County, purportedly to sell some silver. Once inside, the accomplice displayed a gun while Piccolo, wearing a nylon mask, chained the front doors closed to prevent anyone from entering.
The owner was bound, as a pretense, while Piccolo and his accomplice looted the safe of what the owner told police was about $60,000 in cash, several pieces of jewelry and a handgun.
The owner later submitted to his insurance company a fraudulent loss claim that was paid for about $174,000.
In addition to the prison term, Kugler sentenced Piccolo to five years of supervised release and ordered him to pay $174,025 in restitution to Northland Insurance of Minnesota, Carpenito said.