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WGBH's Isaiah Thompson on Frank Salemme and Paul Weadick

What Prison Sentence Does Frank Salemme Face?

Francis Salemme
This 1995 file photo taken in West Palm Beach, Fla., and released by the FBI shows Francis P. "Cadillac Frank" Salemme.
Federal Bureau of Investigation via AP, File
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WGBH's Isaiah Thompson on Frank Salemme and Paul Weadick

Former New England mobster Frank Salemme and his co-defendant Paul Weadick have been found guilty in the 1993 murder of Steven DiSarro. WGBH Radio's Isaiah Thompson has been following the trial. He was at the Moakley Federal Courthouse in Boston, where the trial took place, and spoke with WGBH's All Things Considered host Barbara Howard about the verdict. This transcript has been edited for clarity.

Barbara Howard: So after four days of jury deliberations, what's the scene there at the courthouse as the jury returned the verdicts?

Isaiah Thompson: It was a bit of a chaotic scene because a lot of us were caught by surprise. The jury had just a few hours previously requested hundreds of pages of trial transcript. So it seemed that they might be at it a long while. But whatever they were looking for seemed to have tipped the balance for them.

Howard: So Salemme and Weadick, they were accused in the murder of Boston nightclub owner Steven DiSarro. The case was triggered by the discovery of DiSarro’s body in Providence two years ago. So what do you think was the key evidence that persuaded the jury to find these guilty verdicts?

Thompson: I think that despite the fact that a lot of the witnesses were problematic — the key witnesses were ex-mobsters who had long criminal histories — I think that the fact that between all of them, their testimony was fairly consistent and fit together. I think that might have swayed the jury to believe that whatever flaws there were, the story sounded true.

Howard: What kind of sentences do these two men, Salemme and Weadick, now face?

Thompson: Both men face life in prison. And of course Mr. Salemme is in his 80s, so almost any sentence would likely mean he would die in prison.

Howard: Thanks, Isaiah.

Thompson: Thank you, Barbara.

Howard: That's WGBH Radio's Isaiah Thompson. He's been covering the trial of former New England mobster Frank Salemme and co-defendant Paul Weadick at Boston's Moakley Federal Courthouse. Salemme and Weadick were found guilty today in the 1993 murder of nightclub owner Steven DiSarro. This is All Things Considered.

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