FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami/AP) – It’s taken 12 years, but a Broward County jury has finally received the case in the 2001 mob-style murder of Konstatinos “Gus” Boulis.
Jury deliberations began Thursday afternoon and will resume Friday morning at 9 a.m.READ MORE: Miami ex-Proud Boys leader Henry 'Enrique' Tarrio to stay jailed until Capitol riot trial
Closing arguments wrapped up Thursday afternoon in the trial of Anthony “Little Tony” Ferrari, who along with Anthony “Big Tony” Moscatiello, is accused of arranging Boulis’ murder on a Ft. Lauderdale street.
“He was shot four times and drove a block west , two and a half blocks north, before he fainted from consciousness across the street and came to a final rest and his death in the vehicle across from a Miami Subs,” prosecutor Gregg Rossman told the jury.
Rossman painted a detailed picture for the jury of why they felt Ferrari was behind the crime.
“How would he know Gus Boulis is dead when nobody else does,” said Rossman. “Well there is a simple answer for that, he was there.”
Taking the stand in his defense on Wednesday, Ferrari told the jury he never tried to hire anyone to kill Boulis and instead blamed the slaying on a business rival of Boulis.
“I never thought about killing anybody in my life. It’s just not in my DNA to even think about killing anybody,” Ferrari testified. Ferrari was the only witness for the defense. He testified over his lawyer’s objections.READ MORE: Judge gives initial OK to $1B deal in Surfside condo collapse
Defense attorney Christopher Grillo tried to punch holes in the prosecution’s case.
“How can they ask you to participate in a legal situation that would require my client, Mr. Ferrari, to get the death penalty when they don’t know who the shooter is,” Grillo told the jury.
Prosecutor Brian Cavanaugh said in rebuttal arguments, “Plots hatched in hell have no witnesses.”
The murder happened during a struggle for control over the lucrative SunCruz Casinos gambling fleet, which Boulis had recently sold to businessman Adam Kidan and Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Kidan testified previously that Ferrari confessed to orchestrating the Boulis slaying, but Ferrari insisted it was Kidan all along.
“I never asked anybody in my life, ever, to kill any human being,” Ferrari testified, adding that he was home in Miami Beach the entire day that Boulis was murdered.
Kidan testified that a dispute with Boulis had escalated to the point that he brought in New York’s Gambino crime family as protection, but was shocked when Boulis was killed. Kidan also said Ferrari threatened to kill him and his family if he told anyone about the murder plot.
Prosecutors say Moscatiello and Ferrari decided to get rid of Boulis to guarantee their well-paying contracts with SunCruz under Kidan’s new ownership. Boulis had retained a 10 percent share of the business and was attempting to regain control, other witnesses have testified.
Kidan and Abramoff both were sent to federal prison for fraud in the $147.5 million purchase of SunCruz from Boulis.
Ferrari, 56, faces the death penalty if convicted. Moscatiello is also charged with murder but was granted a mistrial when his attorney fell ill. Prosecutors say they will retry Moscatiello later.
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