PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Reputed New England mob boss Raymond L.S. Patriarca was indicted Monday in a 1978 gangland murder and was placed under guard at a hospital where he was being treated for an undisclosed ailment.
Patriarca and his lieutenant, Rudolph Sciarra, were indicted by a grand jury in Bristol County, Mass., in the execution-style killing of Robert 'Bobby' Candos. It was the second murder charge against both.
Patriarca, who turns 73 on St. Patrick's Day, quickly was placed under guard of atate troopers at Miriam Hospital, where he was listed in 'serious but stable condition' in the intensive care unit. He was taken there Sunday night from his Johnston home.
The Massachusetts grand jury, sitting in New Bedford, charged Patriarca with conspiracy to murder and accessory before murder in the Candos case. Sciarra was charged with murder and conspiracy to murder Candos.
District Attorney Ronald Pina said he will talk to Patriarca's lawyer about the prospects of moving the aging crime figure to New Bedford by ambulance this week for arraignment.
Patriarca would first have to be arraigned in Cranston District Court on a fugitive charge.
Pina said the new indictments were based in part on the testimony of a former mob enforcer who agreed to turn state's evidence and appeared before the grand jury Monday morning.
The witness, in protective custody since last October, is admitted mob triggerman Nicholas Palmigiano, who also implicated Patriarca and Sciarra in the 1965 killing of Raymond 'Baby' Curcio in Providence.
Candos, 30, was reported missing on July 30, 1968, one week before he was to stand trial in Providence for an $11,000 bank robbery. His skeleton was found in North Attleboro 22 months later. He had been shot three times in the head.
Palmigiano told police he killed Candos on orders from Patriarca because Patriarca suspected Candos was about to testify against him in a federal grand jury investigation.
Rhode Island and Massachusetts state police delivered one fugitive warrant naming Patriarca to the Providence office of his lawyer, John F. Cicilline. Another was given to Sciarra at the Rhode Island Adult Correctional Institutions, where he is awaiting trial with Patriarca on accessory to murder charges in the Curcio killing.
Lt. Anthony Mancuso of the Rhode Island State Police was asked if he believed there was any connection between the timing of the indictment and Patriarca's return to Miriam Hospital.
'I think you'd have to draw your own conclusions as to Mr. Patriarca's health. I won't speculate on that,' Mancuso said.
Dr. Barbara Roberts, Patriarca's physician, declined to describe his illness.
Patriarca was hopitalizd with a heart ailment Dec. 5, the day he was arrested and charged with ordering the execution of Curcio, a small-time hood who broke into his brother's home.
The crime figure had been recovering at home since posting $100,000 cash bail seven weeks ago on a charge he was an accessory before Curcio's murder. An April 9 hearing is scheduled in Superior Court to determine if Patriarca is physically able to stand trial in that case.
In affidavits filed in his previous bail hearing, a doctor described Patriarca as a 'wasted, psychologically depressed, tearful, elderly man.'