Henry Hill, Mobster and Movie Inspiration, Dies at 69
Henry Hill, a soldier in the Luchese organized-crime family whose decision to turn federal informer, and subsequent itinerant life in and out of the federal witness protection program, inspired Martin Scorsese’s acclaimed film “Goodfellas,” died on Tuesday in Los Angeles. He was 69 and had lived openly in Topanga, Calif., in recent years....
A native New Yorker of half-Irish, half-Sicilian parentage, Mr. Hill was involved with the Luchese family, considered the most powerful of the city’s original five Mafia families, from his youth in the 1950s until 1980.
That year, arrested on drug-trafficking charges and facing the prospect of a long prison term, to say nothing of possible execution by his former bosses, Mr. Hill became a government witness against his past associates. His testimony in multiple trials helped send dozens of people to prison....
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