Tony "The Ant" Spilotro was born in Chicago on May 19, 1938. The son of a restaurant owner, Spilotro had 5 brothers. At an early age he joined a gang and took part with them in petty crimes and thefts. He was finally caught for the first time at the age of 17 for stealing a t-shirt and was fined $10 and given probation. Over the next 5 years Spilotro would be arrested at least a dozen more times.
Tony built a reputation as one of Chicago's top jewel thiefs . Through his friend Vincent "the Saint" Inserro, he was intorduced to other wiseguys like Joseph Aiuppa, Jimmy "the Turk" Torrello, Joseph Lombardo and William Daddano, Sr., all mobsters who eventually moved up in the syndicate and gained more power. He was mentored by "Mad" Sam DeStefano, and later on by Felix "Milwaukee Phil" Alderisio and Charles "Chuckie" Nicoletti.
Tony finally became a "made member" of the Chicago Mafia family when he was given a contract to murder two individuals: Bill McCartney and Jimmy Miraglia. It is said that Spilotro put McCartney's head in a vice and tightened it until his eye popped out, giving him huge notoriety in the underworld.
Tony Spilotro was given a bookmaking operation and was very successful in running it. He was eventually sent to Miami to protect one of the mob's most brilliant oddsmakers, Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal.
In 1967 Spilotro went back to Chicago. He would remain in Chicago for more four years. Then in 1971, Tony was sent to Las Vegas, again to keep an eye on Frank Rosenthal.
Spilotro set up a headquarters in the gift shop at the Circus Circus casino, and from there he took care of business which included torturing and murdering at least five people, a few of which were found in the desert.
However Las Vegas was open territory for all families from around the country to do business in. It was agreed by the families that there should never be any murders, thefts, or serious crimes that would bring unneeded attention to the syndicate and their casino businesses. But Spilotro had different ideas, and he was becoming a loose cannon who was bringing too much attention to Las Vegas.
In 1972, Anthony was indicted in a murder case along with Mario DeStefano and his brother Mad Sam DeStefano. Mario and Anthony decided to murder Mad Sam with a shotgun to make sure the trial went smoothly for them. However, Mario was still found guilty, but Anthony was acquitted and returned to Vegas.
Finally free of court cases, Spilotro was able to make sure the casino's skim operation was running smoothly and that no scam operations were run by other mobsters. Spilotro was reunited with his pal Frank Rosenthal and worked with him on protecting the Stardust and other interests.
While Rosenthal was the "inside" man, the person responsible for actually running the casino, Spilotro was the "outside" man. His primary task was to make sure all the many casino employees and other personel involved in the "skim" stayed in line.
Spilotro continued committing robberies and violent crimes in Nevada, abused drugs, and even began having an affair with Lefty Rosenthal's wife Geri. The unneeded attention that he brought proved to be a little too much. He was finally blacklisted and put in what is known as "The Black Book" which meant that he could no longer step foot inside a casino ever again.
Instead of taking a low profile and letting things cool off, Spilotro started a gang called "The Hole in the Wall" Gang that was notorious for making holes in walls to steal jewelry from stores. Things seemed to be going very well for him and he was gaining power.
Word got back to the Chicago bosses that Spilotro was committing more and more of these jewlery heists in Las Vegas, and that he continued to abuse drugs.
Enough was enough. Las Vegas was a place for the mob to make money, and they did not want any problems with the the authorities. So Tony Spilotro, along with his brother, were called to a meeting back in Chicago.
Spilotro and his brother were pistol-whipped, beaten and strangled to death in the basement of a mobster's home. Their bodies were brought to a desolate cornfield in Indiana, where they were buried, in a pre dug hole.