Organized Crime in Bars Part I 1991 - New Jersey State Commission of Investigation

At a public hearing in February 1992, the Commission released information for the first time showing that elements of organized crime had gained control of numerous bars and restaurants in New Jersey. The Commission’s investigation found that state and local regulators were doing little to enforce fundamental policies established by the Legislature in 1937 and reaffirmed in 1985. A preliminary report on investigations of liquor license applications was issued in March 1992 and a final report was issued in October 1992.

It was against this background that the State Commission of Investigation began its inquiry into 2 organized crime control of bars and restaurants in New Jersey. The Commission had no evidence that such control was widespread and did not develop such data during its investigation. But what control did exist was blatant, with the State and its municipalities doing little to enforce the fundamental policies established by the Legislature in 1933 and restated in 1985.

So great was this enforcement failure that one city, Hoboken, twice renewed the liquor license of an establishment after it had been exposed in a widely publicized federal trial as a meeting place and headquarters for a powerful faction of the Genovese crime family in New Jersey.

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