Feds: Mob bullies spoke of plot to fix college hoops game

National News

FILE – In this March 20, 2010, file photo, a ball flicks through the net in front of the NCAA logo on the marquis during an NCAA college basketball practice in Pittsburgh. Defying the NCAA, California’s governor signed a first-in-the-nation law Monday, Sept. 30, that will let college athletes hire agents and make money from endorsements — a move that could upend amateur sports in the U.S. and trigger a legal challenge. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Authorities bringing a racketeering indictment against purported members of a New York City organized crime family say their tactics are reminiscent of playground bullies.

Federal prosecutors say 11 Colombo members or associates are among 20 people charged Thursday with extortion, loansharking and other offenses, including an unrealized plot to bribe college basketball players to intentionally lose.

In a particularly violent episode, a reputed Colombo captain and other men allegedly “beat the bricks off” a man who confronted his son for insulting a woman in a bar.

In the alleged basketball plot, one defendant was allegedly heard on a wiretap saying he wanted to pay thousands of dollars to players on an unnamed team to let the other team cover the points spread.

The indictment did not mention a team by name, and there’s no evidence the plot was carried out.

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