An idea of how extensive the Gagliardi family tree has been in Trinidad can be gleaned from a court decree filed in March 1952 dividing up the real estate of Muntera Nucci, who died without a will almost 20 years before, on September 2, 1930. "Her sole and only heirs," according to the decree, were Angelina Niccoli, Louisa DeLuca, and Maria Teresa Gagliardi, "also known as Mary Gagliardi," Pietro's wife. She had died in Trinidad without leaving a will on April 1, 1943.
Pietro himself passed away less than five years later, on January 18, 1948, and by 1952, Mary's one-third share of the property she had inherited from her family was divvied up by the court to ten remaining Gagliardi survivors: Joe, Angel, Pete, Jake, Louis, Sam, Charles, John, Lucy, and Frank.
City directories from before World War II indicate that most of the early members of the Gagliardi family worked as laborers, mechanics, miners, or painters for the railroad. Many of the Gagliardi women were employed in positions such as store clerks and telephone operators.
Gene Gagliardi, according to Nevada records, has long been involved in the bar and gaming industry in Las Vegas. The center of his business interests in Las Vegas, records indicate, is a company called Gaggy's, Inc.
In February 2001, according to the agenda of the Las Vegas City Council, Gene Gagliardi came before the council that month to request that the name of his bar on South Main, then known as Kooter's Klub, be changed to Gino's II. Gagliardi was listed as president, secretary, and treasurer of the venture, owned by Gagliardi's holding company, Gaggy, Inc., which, according to the agenda, holds a tavern liquor license and a restricted gaming license for 15 slot machines at the bar. In addition to the bar, Nevada property records show Gagliardi and Teri G. Galardi, Jack's daughter, who has also operated a bar in Las Vegas, own a piece of Las Vegas real estate together.
A man who answered the telephone last week at Gino's II said that "Gino" Gagliardi seldom came into the establishment and referred the caller to Emilita Sy at Galardi Enterprises. "I just know that Gino's name is on the paperwork, but he pretty much lets the [Galardi] office handle the business. He comes in once in a blue moon. He's Jack Galardi's brother or cousin, something like that. I heard Gino was once a school principal somewhere. People talk. That's pretty much all I know. I just work here. Hear no evil, see no evil, you know?" He declined to give his name.
In the years after they left Colorado and ended up in Los Angeles, the lives of brothers Jack and Angel Galardi came to be filled with crime and controversy. In 1971 they were indicted by a federal grand jury in L.A. and ultimately convicted of "various charges relating to robbery of post offices and transportation of stolen postal money orders," according to an account of the brothers' crimes contained in a 1973 appellate court ruling rendered in the case against them and co-defendant Peter Michael Lafkas.
"The Galardis actively participated in the robbery of two United States Post Offices in California during the summer of 1968. Stolen in the robberies were blank United States Postal money orders with a potential value in excess of $200,000," the ruling said.
"The Galardis hid the money orders on the premises of a bar and warehouse that they owned in Long Beach. Subsequently, they entered into an agreement with Lafkas to transport the money orders to Vietnam, where Lafkas would cash them on the black money market.
"Following through on this arrangement, over 1600 of the stolen money orders were cashed in the Far East for more than $160,000. The money orders were recovered and received in evidence during the course of the trial. On a substantial number of the orders were the fingerprints of the appellants.
"The basic facts are simple," the court concluded. "The money orders were 'in blank' when stolen. The Galardis, with stolen equipment, filled in the value on each bond at $110,000." Convicted of six counts each and sentenced to five years on each count, to be served concurrently, the brothers appealed, attacking the credibility of government witnesses against them and the alleged delay by prosecutors in bringing charges. The appellate court ruled in the Galardis' favor on one count each, holding that one of the laws used by the government to charge them didn't apply. Angel Galardi died at the age of 56 on July 2, 1995, of what the local newspaper reported to be "natural causes." He was living in Lake Forest, an Orange County suburb near the old El Toro Marine base, and had earlier resided in other California cities, including Carlsbad. Jack Galardi, who over the years since leaving Colorado has maintained addresses in Las Vegas; Atlanta, Georgia; and a string of Florida beach cities, turned 72 this April.
Today, in the glare of the Cheetahs scandal, the extended family of Jack Edward Galardi has gone to ground.
Contacted by phone at Galardi Enterprises in Las Vegas this week, Sy said she would take messages for both Gene Gagliardi and Jack Galardi and pass them on to the men, but that she did not expect either to return phone calls. Of Jack she said, "He never has talked, and he never will talk."
Jack Galardi's South Carolina-based attorney has told reporters that Jack had nothing to do with the crimes of his 41-year-old son Michael, who was reportedly adopted sometime during Jack's former marriage to an unidentified woman.
In 1999, investigators with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department told Clark County Commissioners that Jack Galardi was linked to organized crime but presented few details other than to hint he was connected to the Gambino family of New York. His attorneys denied the allegations, but he subsequently bowed out of an effort to obtain a Clark County license for a new strip club, letting his son step into the deal. Las Vegas police later raised questions about whether Jack had continued to hold a secret interest in the venture.