Arrest of suspect with mob ties leads to more questions than answers

Armando Rea’s extended-stay Las Vegas vacation had the makings of real fun in the sun. You know how we take pride in catering to visitors, and with the real estate slump, home prices are a bargain.

Instead, Rea’s journey to Southern Nevada ended with a visit from the FBI, which quietly gave him a return trip to Brooklyn, where the Bonanno crime family soldier finds himself named in a three-decade-old murder case.

Like elephants, these feds never forget. Arrested last month, Rea is charged in a federal racketeering indictment with the July 10, 1980, killing of Genovese family member Gerard Pappa, who was shotgunned as he attempted to catch a late breakfast at a Borough Park café.

Authorities allege Pappa received eggs and lead from Rea and an accomplice.

Rea, who is also charged with gambling crimes and extorting members of Teamsters Local 807 of Long Island, left Brooklyn years ago and, not surprisingly, turned up in Las Vegas. This is the flame to many mob moths.

It’s not speculating much to presume his vanishing act might have been linked to the fact the feds have been working to clear up cold case murders, Pappa’s death among them.

Pappa was a mentor for a number of hoodlums who grew up to make big headlines in New York, Salvatore “Sammy the Bull” Gravano among them. The Pappa hit was likely ordered by Genovese crime boss Vincent Gigante, who was said to be angered after his underling pulled an unapproved homicide. Known for wearing bathrobes in public and faking crazy, the late Gigante eventually was acquitted of murder conspiracy charges in the case.

The most intriguing question is this: Why would the feds keep so quiet about the arrest and what might Rea know about some semi-retired characters in Las Vegas?

Nabbing a mob guy in glitzy Las Vegas would have made a good story and a great photo opportunity.

Could it be that Mr. Rea is in the process of being debriefed about what he might know about other murders?

LIGHTS ON: Rural Nevadans didn’t vote much for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in the recent election, but they’ll benefit from the 500-megawatt solar-thermal plant scheduled for construction in California and Amargosa Valley. The U.S. Interior Department recently approved the plant, part of a $3 billion development by Solar Trust of America in cooperation with two other companies.

With 1,300 construction jobs and 180 permanent jobs once the plant is open, the Amargosa Farm Road Solar Project promises to pay dividends for Nevadans for years to come.

GOOD GOLF: The name is as long as a par 5. It’s called the 23rd Annual Candlelighters Golf Classic & Muterspaw Memorial Liberty Mutual Invitational.

Proceeds benefit Candlelighters of Southern Nevada. The tournament takes place on Nov. 29 at the TPC Summerlin, and I can’t think of a better way to walk off that Thanksgiving weekend calorie splurge. For entry information, go to

ON THE BOULEVARD: You’ve probably spotted Jan Hogan’s byline in the R-J’s View newspapers, but the talented reporter also writes fiction. Hogan recently won an award from Writer’s Digest for her short story, “Coffee, Tea … or Murder.” It was recognized from among more than 13,000 entrants. … Las Vegas police vice Detective Christopher Baughman has just finished his first book, “Anomaly: One Detective’s Quest for Justice.”

BOULEVARD II: Pediatric oncologist Dr. Jonathan Bernstein gathered with well-wishers Thursday night at McMullan’s Irish Pub to celebrate him being named the 2010 Outstanding Philanthropist of the Year by the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

BOULEVARD III: Don’t forget to wish Terry the Chimp a happy birthday on Saturday at the Las Vegas Zoo. Terry turns 31, and zoo director Pat Dingle tells me festivities are planned, although, at 31, Terry is getting a little old for the local club scene.

Have an item for the Bard of the Boulevard? E-mail comments and contributions to or call (702) 383-0295. He also blogs at

Vegas Homeless Remembered
Las Vegas vigil remembers 179 homeless people who died over the past year in Clark County. (David Guzman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
A look inside Tesla’s Nevada Gigafactory
Tesla's Gigafactory east of Reno produces the batteries that fuel the company's electric cars. Production has created more than 7,000 jobs, and the campus that includes one of the largest buildings in the world is expected to triple in size by the time it is completed. Tesla Vice President Chris Lister leads a tour of the facility. (Bill Dentzer/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Garnet Interchange Ribbon Cutting
The Nevada Department of Transportation celebrated the completion of the $63 million I-15-US 93 Garnet Interchange project. The project includes a modified diverging diamond interchange and a 5-mile widening of US 93.
State Foresters Hunt for Record Trees
Urban foresters from the Nevada Division of Forestry hunt for record setting trees.
Rick Davidson directs NFR satellite feed
Rick Davidson directs the Wrangler NFR's live satellite feed from a production trailer outside the Thomas & Mack Center. (Patrick Everson)
Scott Boras, Bryce Harper's agent, speaks to media at baseball's winter meetings
Baseball agent Scott Boras updates media on the contract negotiations of his client Bryce Harper during baseball's winter meetings at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Dec. 12, 2018. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Achievement School District
The achievement district faced strong opposition from traditional schools back in its beginnings in 2016. But with schools like Nevada Rise and Nevada Prep, it's slowly and steadily growing. Amelia Pak-Harvey/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Fresno State QB on record-breaking receiver
Fresno State quarterback Marcus McMaryion talks record-setting receiver KeeSean Johnson. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
The annual 'Shop with a Cop' event at Target
This year’s "Shop with a Cop" event gave about 40 children the chance to shop at Target alongside a North Las Vegas Police officers. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @Bizutesfaye
Melvin Dummar dead at 74
Melvin Dummar has died at 74. Dummar was famous for claiming to have saved Howard Hughes in a Nevada desert in 1967. Dummar claimed to have been left $156 million in Hughes’ will. The will mysteriously appeared after Hughes’ death in 1976. It was dismissed as a fake two years later. Dummar never saw a dime of the billionaire's fortune. Dummar died Saturday in Nye County.
Officer-involved shooting in Nye County
The Nye County Sheriff's Office gives information about a shooting in Pahrump on Thursday night after a man began firing shots outside of his home. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
Law Enforcement Active Shooter Training Exercise
Multiple Las Vegas Valley law enforcement agencies held an active shooter drill at the Department of Public Safety’s Parole and Probation office on December 6, 2018. Officials set up the training exercise to include multiple active shooters, a barricaded suspect and multiple casualties. (Katelyn Newberg/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Public memorial service for Jerry Herbst
Archiving effort hits milestone at Clark County Museum
The Clark County Museum catalogs the final item from the bulk of Route 91 Harvest festival artifacts. (John Przybys/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pearl Harbor survivor Edward Hall talks about his memories of Dec. 7, 1941
U.S. Army Corps Edward Hall, a 95-year-old survivor of Pearl Harbor talks about his memories of that horrific day. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Final Route 91 Harvest festival remembrance objects catalogued at Clark County Museum
The last of the more than 17,000 items left at the makeshift memorial near the Las Vegas sign after the Oct. 1 shootings have been catalogued at the Clark County Museum in Las Vegas. The final item was a black-and-white bumper sticker bearing "#VEGASSTRONG. An additional 200 items currently on display at the museum will be catalogued when the exhibit comes down. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dozier execution timeline
Scott Dozier was set to be executed July 11, 2018, at the Ely State Prison. Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez delayed the execution.
Grand Jury Indicts Constable for theft
A Clark County grand jury indicted Henderson Constable Earl Mitchell. A Las Vegas Review-Journal investigation prompted the criminal probe. The newspaper found Mitchell wrote himself thousands in checks, took out cash at ATMs and traveled on county funds. He faces four felony counts of theft and a county of public misconduct. Mitchell and his attorney could not be reached for comment.
93-year-old WWII veteran arrested during visit to VA hospital
Dr. S. Jay Hazan, 93, a World War II veteran, talks about his arrest during his visit to VA hospital on Friday, Nov. 30. (Erik Verduzco Las Vegas Review-Journal @Erik_Verduzco_
Pearl Harbor survivor struggles in her senior years
Winifred Kamen, 77, survived the attack on Pearl Harbor as an infant, works a 100 percent commission telemarketing job to make ends meet. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Metropolitan Briefing 18th street gang
Las Vegas Metropolitan briefs the media on the recent arrests made regarding the 18th street gang.
Man shot in Las Vegas traffic stop had knife, police say
Police said the man fatally shot by an officer during a traffic stop in downtown Las Vegas had a “homemade knife.” Demontry Floytra Boyd, 43, died Saturday at University Medical Center from multiple gunshot wounds after officer Paul Bruning, 48, shot him during a traffic stop. Bruning pulled Boyd over on suspicion of driving recklessly at 7:41 a.m. near Sunrise Avenue and 18th Street.
Catahoula dogs rescued from home in Moapa Valley
Catahoula dogs were brought to The Animal Foundation after being rescued from home in Moapa Valley.
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses in California wildfire
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses she suffered in California's Woolsey Fire in Malibu in November. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Benefit dinner for Kerry Clasby, the Intuitive Forager
Sonia El-Nawal of Rooster Boy Cafe in Las Vegas talks about having a benefit for Kerry Clasby, known as the Intuitive Forager, who suffered losses on her farm in California’s Woolsey Fire in Malibu. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former President George H.W. Bush dies at 94
Former President George H.W. Bush has died at the age of 94. He died Friday night in Houston, about eight months after the death of his wife, Barbara.
Las Vegans Celebrate Big Snowfall
Las Vegans celebrate big snowfall at Lee Canyon.
Exploring old mines for denim jeans and other vintage items
Caden Gould of Genoa, Nev. talks about his experiences looking for vintage denim jeans and other items in old mines and other places areas across Nevada and the west.
Officers share photo of dead gunman after Las Vegas shooting
A little over an hour after SWAT officers entered Stephen Paddock's suite at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas police officers far from the scene were already sharing cell phone photos of the dead Oct. 1 gunman.
News Headlines
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like