Similar to the Sicilian Mafia, the American Mafia is a secret criminal society without a formal name. Its members usually refer to it as Cosa Nostra (Italian for “our thing”).
The Mafia emerged in New York's Lower East Side, in the late 19th century following waves of Italian immigration, especially from Sicily.
The main five Mafia families in New York City, referred to as The Five Families, dominated organized crime in the United States since 1931. The families are: Lucchese, Bonanno, Gambino, Genovese and Colombo.
In the period Rob The Mob takes place, the Gambino and Bonanno crime families were most dominant.
The Bonanno family operates mainly in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Long Island. The Gambino family operates mainly in Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, Staten Island and Long Island.
In New York City, the Mafia created customs and traditions, which the members have to follow. If one breaks any of the rules they can be killed by another member of the family (usually the murder is committed by the people closest to that person).
• "Omertà" – is the oath or "code of silence", never talk to the authorities.
• "Ethnicity" – only men of Italian descent are allowed to become full members. Associates, partners, allies etc. have no ethnic limits.
• "Family secrets" – members are not allowed to talk about family business to non-members.
• "Blood for blood" – if a family member is killed (by another member) no one can commit murder (in revenge) until the boss gives permission.
• "No fighting among members" – from fistfights to knife fights.
• "Tribute" – every month members must pay the boss and also giving him a cut on any side deals.
• "Adultery" – members are not allowed to commit adultery with another family member’s wife.
• "No facial hair" – members were not allowed to grow mustaches; part of the Mustache Pete way. The Mustache Petes, (Sicilian Mafia members who migrated to New York but had began their work in the crime business back in Sicily), wanted to maintain Sicilian criminal traditions in their new country and were more interested in working with and exploiting their fellow Italians rather than the public at large.
... To be continued.