Frank Costello goes South
In this episode, Casey McBride, Frank Costello historian, discusses how a well known New York mobster formed a relationship with the flamboyant Huey P. Long, Louisiana’s governor, and then-Senator during the 1920-1930s. Frank Costello and Phil “Dandy Phil” Kastel set up the slot machine business in New York City. They disguised them as candy machine and the slots would dispense a mint on a losing pull and money on a winning pull. He soon had around 25,000 machines running in the northeast part of the United States. In 1933, Fiorello LaGuardia ran for the mayor of New York City on a clean government platform. After the voters elected him, he declared war on mob corruption of city officials and this meant a war on the slot machine business because it was a significant provider of graft. Frank quickly adapted and made a move south to Louisiana after making a deal with Huey P. long who ran the entire state like a dictatorship.
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