Sammy Gravano: The Dangerous Mobster Who's Free In Witness Protection

Sammy Gravano is one of the most notorious gangsters to have ever gone into the federal witness protection program. And he's such a hardened criminal and lover of that Mafia life that he didn't even stay in the program for a full year. A mean, violent man who went by "The Bull," Gravano was a professional hitman for the Gambino crime family. He even organized the dramatic hit on Paul Castellano, helping his boss John Gotti take over the family.

However, when the law finally caught up to Gotti and Gravano, The Bull would end up doing what he needed to do in order to protect himself. According to The Infographics Show, he became the highest-ranking made man to turn snitch on his own organization in exchange for federal protection. His information put Gotti behind bars for good, and earned Gravano a light 5-year sentence, after which he was allowed to go free under the auspices of the federal witness protection program, despite having confessed to his involvement in 19 murders. But the former Gambino family underboss didn't stay in the program or live the straight life for too long after his release.

Sammy Gravano didn't want to be John Gotti's fall guy

In 1990, the FBI had enough evidence to put both John Gotti and Sammy Gravano away for the rest of their days. The feds had hours of incriminating conversations recorded via bugs planted in the gang's Manhattan hideout. And as Gravano told his local Fox affiliate in February 2021, Gotti planned on having him take the fall for everything. Gotti told Gravano that the streets needed the boss, and that he would have to sacrifice himself for the good of the family. But Gravano didn't earn a nickname like The Bull for no reason. He fought back against anyone who threatened him, even his former friend and boss. So he contacted the government and spilled every bean he had on Gotti.

Gravano was released into the witness protection program in 1995, but he only stayed inside for eight months. He didn't like having to leave his old life behind and start over as someone new. Neither did he want to leave behind his life of crime. Five years after his release, he was arrested again, this time on charges of running a drug ring with his son. He served just over 17 years of a 20-year sentence, and was released in 2017. He now continues to capitalize on his life of crime with his podcast called "Our Thing."