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Wife Patty continuedfrompage28A OBITUARIES OBITUARIES &INMEMORIAMS SHAREYOURCONDOLENCES|SIGNAGUESTBOOK|SHAREMEMORIES ONLINEATWWW.DEMOCRATANDCHRONICLE.COM/LEGACY SCHOHARIE A feder- a l law aimed at prevent- i ng looting of historic sites is keeping officials in upstate New York from finding out details about three spots along the route of a planned natural gas pipeline that contain prehistoric artifacts. Constitution Pipeline LLC, which plans to build a 124-mile pipeline from P ennsylvania’s shale f ields to northeastern m arkets, has filed documents with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission describing three sites on its route through the Schoharie Valley west of Albany that have archaeological value. P revious digs at cons truction sites and scien- t ific excavations nearby have produced a wealth of arrowheads, stone tools, pottery shards and campfire remnants dating back as much as 5,000 years. Schoharie County officials want to know exactly where the sites are so they can weigh in on proposed p rotective measures. But t heir attempts to get the i nformation from FERC w ere rebuffed because of federal regulations designed to protect sites from looting. The county’s planning department filed a Freedom of Information request, which was denied, and now they’re appealing that decision. “The county is saying we don’t want to advertise where sites are, but to m ake recommendations f or mitigation efforts, we h ave to know the location of the sites,” said Shane Nickle, senior planner for the county. Christopher Stockton, aspokesman for the pipeline company, said FERC regulations prohibit the company from disclosing sensitive cultural re- s ource locations to third p arties other than the fed- e ral agency and the State H istoric Preservation Office. Randy Simons, spokesman for the state office, said the office is review- ing the effect of the pipeline on historic resources and will make recommendations to preserve any artifacts that are unearthed. He said the state office isn’t allowed to release specific information t o local officials. A n archaeologist who w orks in the region isn’t worried. “The Schoharie Valley has a wealth of prehistoric occupation, with sites that go back at least 5,000 years to hunter-gatherer groups,” said Sean Rafferty, an archaeologist at the University at Albany who o versees a dig called the P ethick site that has un- e arthed more than 3 50,000 artifacts since 2004. He said he’s not concerned about the pipeline project. “There is a legal proc- ess in place to protect historic resources, and it requires measures to minimize impact,” Rafferty said. The pipeline has FERC approval contingent on receipt of a water quality certificate from the state Department of Environ- m ental Conservation and a Clean Water Act permit f rom the Army Corps of E ngineers. A second pipeline, the 325-mile Northeast Energy Direct project proposed by Kinder Morgan, is in earlier stages of planning on a roughly parallel route. Ted Shuart, Schoharie County’s historian, said Constitution’s maps show the route just misses the Pethick site, but he’s concerned it will damage an e qually valuable site. “ The whole area is full o f historic artifacts,” Shuart said. Rather than destroying potentially significant sites, the pipeline project could reveal new ones, Rafferty said. “There’s often a perception that archaeology and development projects a re in conflict with each o ther,” Rafferty said. “I l ook at it as cooperative. M ost sites are discovered because development is happening. The payoff comes with exploration paid for by the company.” NY gas pipeline route a mystery Slated to go through sites c ontaining ancient artifacts MARY ESCH ASSOCIATED PRESS Rather than destroying potentially significant sites, the pipeline project could reveal new ones, according to archaeologist Sean Rafferty. NEW YORK - For decades, prosecutors say, V incent Asaro managed to keep his role in an infa- m ous mob heist immortalized in the hit movie Good- f ellas hidden from the outside world while others of h is generation were locked up or died gangland deaths. Afrail-looking Asaro finally emerged from the s hadows after his arrest l ast year and will go on trial Monday on charges he pocketed a cut of the $6 million Lufthansa robbery at Kennedy Airport i n 1978 — one of the large st cash thefts in American history. If convicted, he’d become the latest casualty of an erosion of the Maf ia’s code of silence that h as decimated the aging upper echelon of New York City’s underworld, sometimes called the “Oldfellas.” P rosecutors at the trial in federal court in Brooklyn will give jurors a lesson in a bygone era when the five Italian Mafia families had a greater appe- t ite for brazen crimes — and deadly payback for betrayals. The defense will counter by accusing t he government of using shady turncoat gangsters with faded memories or i ncentives to lie. Asaro, 80, who has a history of convictions for lesser mob-related crimes, was arrested again after his cousin, Gaspare Valenti, came f orward with new information about the heist and a greed to wear a wire to try to coax admissions out of the reputed longtime member of the Bonanno c rime family. Prosecutors haven’t revealed why their key witnesses t urned on Asaro, though it’s believed he may have held a grudge after being cheated out of a cut of Asaro’s $750,000 take from the heist, said Jerry Capeci, a Mafia expert w ho writes the gangland- news.com web column. “ There were 750,000 reasons for this guy to cooperate,” Capeci said. Valenti, a Bonanno ass ociate who has pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy, is expected to t ake the witness stand to testify about Asaro’s alleged role in the Lufthansa heist and a gruesome murder of a suspected mob turncoat. Other witnesses will include form er Bonanno boss Joseph M assino, the highest- ranking mobster to ever break the mob’s oath of o merta by becoming a government witness. Asaro was a Bonanno s oldier, with the Mafia slogan “death before dishonor” tattooed on his fore- a rm, in late 1978 when hooded gunmen looted a v ault in the Lufthansa’s cargo terminal and stole about $5 million in un- t raceable U.S. currency that was being returned to the United States from G ermany, along with about $1million in jewel- r y. The theft was orchestrated by James “Jimmy the Gent” Burke — a late Lucchese crime family associate portrayed by Robert De Niro in “Good- f ellas” — with the blessing of Asaro, whose crime family considered the airport its turf, court papers said. Afterward, higher ranking conspirators were expected to receive $750,000, “but most did not live to receive their s hare, either because they were killed or it was never given to them,” the papers s aid. In one of the recordings made by the cooper- a ting cousin, Asaro complained in a profanity- l aced rant, “We never got our right money, what we were supposed to get. … J immy kept everything.” But prosecutors claim Asaro indeed got his mon- e y, and blew most of it at the racetrack because of a g ambling problem, prosecutors said. As evidence of that, another cooperator “is expected to testify that, following the Heist, he saw the defendant regularly at a local track bet- t ing larger amounts than usual and extending extortionate loans,” the government said in court papers. Asaro gave Massino, his boss in a Bonanno crew, an attache case filled with gold and jewelry from the heist as a trib- u te, the papers said. The windfall set the stage for a bloodbath port rayed in Goodfellas . De Niro’s character became irate over fellow mobs ters’ purchases of flashy cars and furs, fearing t hey would attract law enforcement attention, and had some of them w hacked — a plot twist based on the inside account of Henry Hill, the m ob associate-turned informant played in the film b y Ray Liotta. In addition to the real- life heist, Asaro is charged in the 1969 murder of a suspected law enforcement informant, Paul Katz, whose remains w ere found during an FBI dig in 2013 at a house once occupied by Burke. Asaro told the cooperator that Burke “had killed Katz with a dog chain because they believed he was a ‘rat,’” the court papers said. V alenti, 68, also told investigators that Asaro and Burke brought Katz’s body to a vacant home in Q ueens where it was concealed beneath a cement floor, the paper said. In the 1980s, at the behest of the imprisoned Burke, Asaro ordered the cooper- a tor to dig up the remains —“a human skull, bones and some corduroy clothing material” — and move t hem to another location, the papers said. In the years since the h eist and the murder, the Martin Scorsese blockbuster was made, books were written and some of the robbers were convicted or rubbed out. Asaro quietly went about his b usiness and, for a time, g ot away with it, though his criminal career and personal life were rocky, a uthorities said. In the 1990s, the then- captain in the Bonanno f amily was demoted to soldier because of “his gambling problems and f ailure to repay debts to those associated with org anized crime,” court papers said. Prosecutors say at one point, he found him- s elf a subordinate of his mobster son, who rose through the ranks with his h elp — a favor his father regretted. “ Jerry’s for Jerry,” Asaro said on one of the tapes. “I lost my son. I lost my son when I made him a skipper. I lost my son when I put him there.” By 2013, “after a series o f high-profile Bonanno family members cooperated with law enforcement or were incarcerated,” the defendant had been promoted again to captain and won a position on the “panel” or administration running the Bonanno family, court papers said. But by then, the cooperator had come for- w ard to crack open the Lufthansa time capsule a nd the feds were closing in. “Sometimes mob sec rets never get told,” Cap eci said. “And sometimes they get told a life- t ime later.” ‘Goodfellas’ drama for real Trial starts Monday for aging suspect in infamous 1978 mob heist at JFK airport TOM HAYS ASSOCIATED PRESS AP FILE PHOTO FBI agents flank Vincent Asaro as they escort the reputed mobster from FBI offices in New York in 2014. More than 30 years after one of the largest cash robberies in U.S. history, the now 80-year-old Asaro will stand trial in New York for helping to plan the heist that became immortalized in the Martin Scorsese movie Goodfellas. AP FILE PHOTO 1979 James “Jimmy the Gent” Burke is led handcuffed from alaw enforcement vehicle in New York. Burke is believed to have masterminded and executed the 1978 Lufthansa heist, one of the largest cash robberies in U.S. history, that was immortalized in the Martin Scorsese mob movie Goodfellas. AP FILE PHOTO 1978 Police cordon off an area around a stolen black van discovered in the Brooklyn. Police suspect the van was used by thieves who escaped with more than $6 million in cash and jewels f rom a John F. Kennedy International Airport hangar.