Seagal's Mob Ties

Court TV's Crime Library has covered this better than I could ever hope to. This is really the type of stuff that you simply cannot make up. I suggest you read their entire article, entitled 'Steven Seagal and the Mob'. It's five pages (it says seven, but the last two aren't really part of the article), but well worth the time it will take to get through it. I'll just quote a couple highlights.

The actor was a martial artist who specialized in playing tough-guy heroes on the big screen. Throughout his career, the star had made several claims of real-life heroics, including black-ops jobs for the CIA and encounters with organized crime figures around the world. The actor also apparently had a fixation with urban Italian-Americans, claiming at one time to be half-Italian when in reality his mother was Irish and his father Jewish.

On the FBI tape, they say that the tough-guy actor was "petrified." At this meeting Anthony "Sonny" Ciccone, an alleged capo in New York's Gambino organized-crime family, and his "right-hand man," Primo Cassarino, joked with Vincent Nasso about Seagal's less than heroic reactions to their shakedown attempts.

When the feds eavesdropped on the mobsters' conversations about Seagal, the wiseguys and their associates seemed pretty confident that they had the tough-guy actor running scared, and they thought it was absolutely hilarious. Vincent Nasso was caught on tape saying, "It was like right out of the movies."

At least one of Ueshiba's students remembers Seagal being around at the time but doesn't recall Seagal being on the mat very much. He remembers Seagal as the kid who was always playing guitar.

Seagal returned to the United States and married Adrienne La Russa while he was still married to [Miyako] Fujitani. When Fujitani learned of her husband's new marriage, she filed for an annulment.

While promoting [Above the Law], Seagal gave an interview for the Los Angeles Times in which he obliquely referred to work he'd done for the CIA in Japan. "They saw my abilities, both with martial arts and with the language," he said. "You could say that I became an advisor to several CIA agents in the field and through my friends in the CIA, met many powerful people and did special works and special favors."

According to Vanity Fair, his first wife stated flatly, "He was never in the CIA."

On the set of one movie, he challenged a stuntman, who was a black belt in judo, to try to choke him out, a judo technique in which pressure is applied to the carotid artery in the neck until the victim is rendered temporarily unconscious. According to one source, Seagal claimed to be impervious to the technique. He was wrong. The producers of the film became frantic when they saw their NBA-sized star lying unconscious on the ground.

Throughout the nineties, Seagal was accused of sexual harassment by employees and prospective actresses. Ned Zeman in Vanity Fair quotes an actress who described Seagal's new spin on the casting-couch lure. According to the woman, Seagal had asked her to take off her top and groped her breasts in order to show her where her spiritual "meridian points" were located.

Not surprisingly, according to Vanity Fair, the last words Nasso [Seagal's partner] said to Seagal were, "Go fuck yourself."

For four hours, the defense circled and jabbed at Seagal. Many of Seagal's claims from the past came back to haunt him. He was asked at one point if he had once hired "someone to set up a man in a compromising homosexual situation."

Seagal exploded. "I'm not on trial here! ... This is crazy."