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Financial Crimes

Organized crime boss sentenced to 108 months' imprisonment

William D'Elia sentenced for money laundering conspiracy and witness tampering

PHILADELPHIA - A U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) investigation resulted in a nine-year sentence for a senior organized crime leader. William D'Elia was sentenced on November 24 by United States District Court Judge Thomas I. Vanaskie to 108 months' imprisonment for conspiring to launder money and witness tampering. D'Elia was also ordered to serve three years of supervised release following his prison term.

According to federal officials, the sentencing of D'Elia constituted the latest chapter in a lengthy investigation and prosecution of this reputed money laundering figure. As United States Attorney Carlson noted: "The sentencing of D'Elia comes after a series of carefully coordinated investigations conducted by state and federal law enforcement agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement; the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Division; the Pennsylvania State Police; and the U.S. Department of Labor." According to Martin C. Carlson, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Pennsylvania: "today's sentencing sends a powerful message about the commitment of law enforcement to break the grip of organized criminal money laundering in Northeastern Pennsylvania, and to ensure that the people of central Pennsylvania can live free of the influence of organized criminal figures."

U.S. Attorney Carlson also thanked the many law enforcement partners whose efforts led to this guilty plea conviction noting, "This investigation is a sterling example of the success we can achieve in law enforcement by working together toward the common goal of justice."

"This case exemplifies how ICE working in concert with the Pennsylvania State Police and other federal agencies, used solid investigative techniques to dismantle a long standing criminal organization," said John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge of the ICE office of investigations in Philadelphia. "With the sentencing of William D'Elia, today, we close a chapter on the Bufalino organized crime family and its leadership. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of all the agencies involved, PSP, DOL-OIG, FBI and ICE, we have dismantled an organization that has exploited our community for decades."

"The significance of this extensive investigation effort and the sentencing of William D'Elia is that it represents the final chapter in the dismantling of the Bufalino Pittston crime syndicate," said Janice K. Fedarcyk, Special Agent in Charge of the Philadelphia Division of the FBI. "The FBI in Philadelphia and all of its law enforcement partners remain committed to identifying and destroying the elements of organized crime that victimize the citizens of the Commonwealth."

Pennsylvania State Police, Bureau of Criminal Investigation Captain Bret Waggoner stated, "I am very proud of the Pennsylvania State Police Troopers who participated in this investigation and sincerely appreciate the cooperation we received from our law enforcement partners. I also thank the U.S. Attorney's Office for their leadership in an endeavor that encompassed several years. Mr. D'Elia's sentence speaks to the seriousness of his actions and sends a strong message to those who engage in organized crime."

This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Gordon A.D. Zubrod and Christian Fisanick, Chief of the Criminal Division, United States Attorney's Office. Mr. Carlson praised these talented prosecutors for their seamless cooperation and tireless efforts which resulted in this law enforcement success.