By Hadas Kuznits
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A reformed South Philadelphia mobster is now a Collingswood, New Jersey restaurant owner, and he’s seeking creative methods to fund his business’s expansion.
Convicted fellon Angelo Lutz says it’s been hard to shake his past, especially when looking to fund the expansion of his Collingswood restaurant Kitchen Consigliere Cafe:
“I can have the most profitable business in the world but because I’m a fellon, a lot of banks won’t lend me commercial money and on top of that, no bank will do an sba loan with me.”
He’s not shy about discussing his conviction. In fact, Lutz says some folks are drawn to his restaurant because of his mob ties:
“I was indicted in the year 2000 with Joe Merlino and some other people. Most of my charges stem predominantly from gambling and racketeering. I went to trial in 2001. A jury of my peers found me guilty.”
So Lutz is asking folks to crowdfund his venture through Indogogo, but he insists it’s not just a donation:
“You know, we’re not asking for nothing for nothing. We’re giving back all those perks — dinner for 4 or an appetizer, desserts, Sunday gravy family style. Spaghetti and meatball dinners.”
So far he’s raised over $8,000 and he hopes to raise at least $17,000 more.