Peel police would not confirm the man's identity, but Shahid Malik, a lawyer who shares the office where the shooting took place, said Musitano was there to meet with his lawyer, Joseph Irving.
"I hope Mr. Musitano is OK," Malik told CBC News. "It's very concerning, very upsetting, very unnerving."
Peel police said at a news conference that the victim was shot multiple times outside his vehicle. An SUV parked in front of Malik's office was towed from the scene Thursday morning. Officers would not say why he was there.
Malik would not say what Musitano and Irving were meeting about, citing "solicitor/client privilege." The person who answered the phone at Irving's office hung up on a reporter. Subsequent calls went to voicemail.
Musitano's brother, Angelo, was gunned down in the driveway of his Waterdown, Ont., home on May 2, 2017.
A Hamilton man is facing a murder charge in connection with his death. Two other suspects are wanted on Canada-wide warrants, but police believe they may have fled to Mexico.
Weeks after Angelo Musitano was killed, Pat Musitano's home on St. Clair Boulevard in Hamilton was also shot up.
Neighbours walked their dogs past the home Thursday morning. Multiple security spotlights surround the front porch.
Earlier this year, 43-year-old Cece Luppino was found inside a home owned by his father Rocco — also a known mobster.
At one point a man in a grey SUV drove up to the house, looked it over then headed for reporters standing on the other side of the street.
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"F–k off," he yelled. "Don't you think they've been through enough? I'm asking you a question, don't you think this family has been through enough?"
Musitano's uncle, Tony, died last week of natural causes. His funeral was held just yesterday at Cathedral Basilica of Christ the King in Hamilton.
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Antonio Nicaso, a Mafia expert who teaches courses on organized crime at Queen's University, told CBC News he wasn't at all shocked to learn that Musitano had been shot.
"Everybody thought he was a target of retaliation after the murder of his brother and the shooting in front of his house," he said.
It appeared Musitano had been living in Mississauga, Nicaso said. "He was trying to hide. He was moving from one place to another."
The list of people who could want revenge against the Musitanos is likely long. The family is linked to convictions for bombings and extortion in the 1970s, as well as the hit on mobster Domenic Racco in the 1980s, and the murders of Johnny "Pops" Papalia and one of his lieutenants, CarmenBarillaro, in 1997.
The brothers reached a deal and pleaded to conspiracy to commit murder in the death of Barillaro. In turn, the charges against them in connection with Papalia's death were dropped. They were sentenced to 10 years in jail, but got out in 2007, and had made little noise since then — until bullets started flying once more.
The Musitanos were once protected by an alliance with the famed Rizzuto crime family, based out of Montreal.
The 2013 death of reputed Mafia boss Vito Rizzuto created a power vacuum within the organization, and now warring factions have weakened the once mighty Montreal Mafia. That left the Musitanos to fend for themselves.
Peel Regional Police officers responded to reports of a shooting in the area of Hurontario St. and Matheson Blvd. shortly after 7 a.m.
"There is a very critical balance," Nicaso said. "It's a very unstable condition, like Pandora's Box. Anything can happen.
Other recent mob-related deaths in Hamilton include Cece Luppino, the son of mobster Rocco Luppino, and Albert Iavarone, who police say had connections to organized crime.
Det. Sgt. Peter Thom of Hamilton's major crime unit is the case manager for investigations into Angelo Musitano's death, along with the killings of both Iavarone and Luppino.
He said investigators believe the rash of killings are part of some kind of underworld power struggle involving factions in the Toronto and Hamilton area.
"This could potentially be part of that ongoing feud," he said of Thursday's shooting.
Thom added the attack on Musitano won't have a major impact on any ongoing Hamilton investigations, but he's willing to help Peel police given the "Hamilton flavour" of the shooting.
"I'm sure we'll be hearing from them and asking for some information on our knowledge of the Musitano family and what's been going on in and around Hamilton."
Adam Carter is a Newfoundlander who now calls Hamilton home. He enjoys a good story and playing loud music in dank bars. You can follow him on Twitter @AdamCarterCBC or drop him an email at [email protected]
Hamilton mobster Pasquale (Pat) Musitano has \”life-threatening\” injuries after being shot multiple times outside his lawyers officer in Mississauga Thursday morning, the latest in a string of Mafia shootings in the area.
The reputed boss of the Hamilton Musitano family was shot around 7 a.m. outside the office of lawyer Joseph Irving at 120 Matheson Blvd. E., near Whittle Road. Irving had been acting for Musitano in connection with a paving and construction company.
Sources tell The Spectator that Pat was hit as many as four times, including to his head, and was in critical condition when he was transported to Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto.
The shooting comes amid a resurgence in Mafia violence in Hamilton and surrounding areas, including the homicide of Musitanos younger brother Angelo (Ang) Musitano, who was shot in his Waterdown driveway nearly two years ago, on May 2, 2017.
Musitanos own St. Clair Boulevard home was riddled with bullets weeks later in what experts thought was a warning to the Mafia boss.
The timing of this latest shooting — a day after the funeral for Pats uncle, former Hamilton mobster Tony Musitano — and the location are noteworthy, experts say.
In other recent Hamilton mob shootings, including Ang Musitanos murder, the targets were hit at home.
\”I think the timing of it is very relevant. People in the underworld know Pat is literally the remnants of the Musitano crime family,\” says Stephen Metelsky, a criminology professor at Mohawk College who spent 21 years with Halton police, including specializing in organized crime.
\”Given all the extenuating circumstances leading up to this, not just his brothers death, but his house being targeted twice, his uncle passing away … I think that just opened up a ripe opportunity to speed up whatever plans were underway to make a power play into Hamilton.\”
Musitano had been to an early morning meeting with his lawyer, Joseph Irving, who practises criminal and civil law, according to Shahid Malik, another lawyer who shares the office.
\”He had the meeting and he left,\” said Malik. \”Mr. Irving walked him to the door and said Bye-bye. Ciao-ciao. And then something happened in the parking lot.\”
Malik would not say what Musitano and Irving were meeting about, citing \”lawyer/client privilege.\” He also said it is not unusual for Irving to hold early morning meetings.
Malik said Irving did not see or hear what happened. He had gone back to his desk and it was only when his next client phoned to say they couldnt get into the building because police had it cordoned off that Irving learned of the shooting.
Irving recently began acting as legal counsel on behalf of a Hamilton-based company known as Havana Group Supplies Inc., which was incorporated in June 2018 and is involved in the paving and construction industries.
Its alleged in recently filed court documents that Musitano had become a minority shareholder of Havana Group Supplies and that he was receiving significant amounts of under-the table cash payments.
Havana Group Supplies and some of its principals are associated with a property owned by Waterdown Garden Supplies Ltd. on Highway 5 in Troy, west of Peters Corners, that is being used as a soil dumping site.
On April 9, dozens of angry truck operators lined Highway 5 at the entrance to the Troy property, alleging they hadnt been paid for months for hauling soil on behalf of Havana Group Supplies. Several trucks also showed up at the Cayuga courthouse Apr. 17 while a court proceeding related to Havana Group Supplies was being heard.
Its alleged that more than 24,000 loads of soil have been dumped at the Troy property since last summer.
On April 12, Irving sent a letter on behalf of Havana Group Supplies to truck operators stating the company had $12.5 million in a trust account but there were certain \”irregularities\” in the invoices. Irving stated none of the money would be disbursed until the invoices and records were reviewed by an auditor.
At the scene in Mississauga, hours after the shooting, a black GMC Denali was parked just outside the door of the law office. The rear, drivers side tire was flat and a large pool of blood was on the asphalt beside it.
Just before noon Thursday, the vehicle was towed from the scene. \”A full forensic examination will be conducted on that vehicle,\” said Const. Akhil Mooken, a Peel Police media officer at the scene.
The shooting site is about 200 feet away from a daycare centre where children were out playing as police covered up the parking lot bloodstain with a paper bag.
Yellow police tape was around two non-descript buildings containing multiple offices, including the Irving office. The parking lot is between the two buildings.
Mooken said the shooting was being investigated by divisional detectives and police had planned to notify next of kin.
When The Spectator spoke to him, Mooken said no other police service was involved in the investigation and there was \”no information at this time with regards to suspects.\”
Malik said he knows little of the Musitano crime family but did recall reading the news about Ang Musitanos murder. Irving called Malik at about 9:30 a.m. and told him about the shooting.
Malik planned to turn his security video over to police, but said the cameras were not pointed \”in the right spot\” to catch any of the incident. He said police are \”bringing a preservation order\” that will prevent anyone from touching the video until it is seized.
\”Its very unsettling and terrifying,\” Malik said of the shooting. \”And quite brazen in broad daylight.\”
The Musitanos have a long criminal history in Hamilton and were at one time considered one of three Italian mob families vying for control of the territory with the Luppinos and Papalias.
Pat Musitano inherited control of the family business when his father, Dominic Musitano, died in 1995.
Pat and Angs uncle, former mobster Tony Musitano, was buried on Wednesday, after a funeral at Cathedral Basilica of Christ the King.
The 72-year-old was convicted in a string of Hamilton bombings in 1980s and, while in prison, convicted of helping plot the killing of Toronto mobster Domenic Racco. He received full parole in 1990 and retired from organized crime, but still commanded respect.
Pat Musitano was not seen at his uncles funeral, according to the Toronto Stars Peter Edwards, who attended the funeral.
Together, Pat Musitano and Angelo Musitano were accused of taking out notorious mob boss Johnny (Pops) Papalia in May 1997, allegedly ordering hit man Ken Murdock to commit the murder.
The brothers struck a deal and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit murder in the death of Niagara crime boss Carmen Barillaro in July 1997. Barillaro, Papalias lieutenant, was gunned down at his Niagara Falls home.
Pat Musitanos earlier criminal convictions included possession of property obtained by crime over $1,000, for which he received a suspended sentence and probation for two years.
The brothers kept a low profile before Angs murder, with the only Musitano headline happening when Pats SUV was torched in his driveway in September 2015.
Police linked Angelo Musitanos murder to a botched hit in Vaughan two months before. On March 14, 2017, 28-year-old Mila Barberi, an innocent bystander, was fatally shot inside a vehicle. Her boyfriend, Saverio Serrano, who survived, or his family are believed to have been the intended targets.
Police have identified three people facing charges of first-degree murder and attempted murder in those shootings. The only man in custody, Jabril Abdalla, is seeking bail.
His co-accused, Michael Graham Cudmore of Hamilton (the alleged gunman), and Daniel Mario Tomassetti of Ancaster, fled to Mexico and are wanted on international warrants.
Other recent Mafia-connected murders include the shooting deaths of Albert Iavarone and Cece Luppino.
The shooting does not directly impact any of the ongoing homicide investigations into Mafia murders in Hamilton, because Pat and the rest of the Musitano family have consistently not co-operated with police, says Det. Sgt. Peter Thom, of the Hamilton police major crime unit. Hes the case manager for investigations into the murders of Iavarone and Luppino.
Investigators believe the shootings and murders are part of some sort of \”ongoing feud in the GTHA,\” Thom said.
\”One of our theories is that there is some retaliation going back and forth between the various crime families,\” he said. \”But who is orchestrating and calling the shots? That question is up in the air.\”
The investigation into Pat Musitanos shooting is being handled by Peel Regional police. Thom said, however, Hamilton police would assist in whatever way possible, including sharing intelligence if requested.