Pelligrino Morano was the head of a group of Neapolitans based in Coney Island, where he owned the Santa Lucia restaurant, often used as the headquarters for their gang.
Morano had previously been based in Harlem. When he was arrested in 1904 for the shooting of an Italian ‘well known to the police’ at Mulberry and Grand Streets, he gave his address as 327 E 115th Street. Whilst the police believed his claim of innocence, he was locked up and charged for carrying a concealed weapon.
Years later, Morano was based in Coney Island. His associates Allesandro Vollero and Leopoldo Lauritano owned a coffee house at 133 Navy Street Brooklyn. The coffee house was used as the headquarters for their gang, which mainly consisted of Neapolitans, and was often referred to as ‘The Camorra’.
On June 24th, 1916 a meeting took place at Coney Island between the Sicilian Morello gang, the Neapolitan Navy Street gang and the Neapolitan Coney Island gang. The idea of the meeting was to discuss the expansion of gambling dens in lower Manhattan. A plan that led to a string of murders across New York.
In May 1917, Ralph ‘The Barber’ Daniello, a member of the Navy St gang, began to tell the police everything he knew about Morano, the Neapolitan gangs, and the recent murders.