Unformatted text preview: rates in the 1920s and 1930s. • Small-scale crime, fostered by poverty and discrimination, was a problem in most central city communities, but it usually did not involve a criminal conspiracy. Prohibition catapulted some Italian Americans into organized crime, which at the time was controlled by Irish and Jewish Americans. By 1940 two dozen Italian American “crime families” were operating in major cities. For many immigrant groups, including Italian Americans, such crime has been one of the only avenues for economic mobility. • Reports in the 1990s indicate that, except in a few New York City and Chicago areas, the power of Italian American “crime families” had declined significantly. Current FBI statistics show that only 4 percent of the 500,000 Americans estimated to be involved in organized crime belong to Italian American crime networks....
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- Fall '10
- Immigration to the United States, Italian Americans, U.S. immigration commission, Italian American stereotype