Civella, Nick (1912-1983)

Born Kansas City, MO, March 19, 1912.

Died March 1983.


During Nick Civella's reign, from 1953 to about 1977, the KC mob moved aggressively into Las Vegas casinos and reportedly had large interests in the Stardust (opened in 1955), the Fremont (opened in 1956) and later the Landmark Hotel (opened in 1969). The move west was done in concert with Mafia families from Cleveland and Chicago.

Kansas City-born Civella was closely tied to the Teamsters Union during Jimmy Hoffa's presidency and the later presidency of Roy Williams (1915-1988) and appears to have had access to the Teamster pension fund. (After the mob boss's death, Roy Williams told authorities that he was intimidated into doing Civella's bidding.)

Thanks to his skimming from the Stardust, Civella earned an early place on the Nevada Gaming Commission's Exclusion List. He, his brother Carl and nine others were the first to be named on the list in 1960.

Nick Civella is believed to have been an attendee at the 1957 Apalachin, NY, crime convention, though he was able to escape Joseph Barbara's estate without being noticed by authorities.

Related Links: