Editor’s note: Since the publication of this story, the court has dealt with all of the charges against Michael Roberto referenced in this story.
Roberto was acquitted of uttering threats to cause death and assault by choking, suffocating or strangling one woman. He was also acquitted of one count of robbery, and failing to comply with an order not to communicate with that same woman.
A second series of charges against the same woman were also withdrawn, including one count of uttering threats to cause death and assault by choking, suffocating or strangling.
A charge of uttering threats to cause bodily harm to a second woman was stayed.
The original story appears below.
A Calgary gangster who admitted to playing a part in multiple homicides against rival gang members is back in custody.
Michael Roberto, 39, was released from prison in April 2021, having served his entire prison sentence.
Global News has confirmed he is now facing a series of new charges for alleged domestic violence in Ontario.
Those charges include uttering threats to cause bodily harm against one woman and uttering threats to cause death to a second woman as well as committing an assault on that same woman by choking, suffocating or strangling.
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Roberto was originally convicted of three counts of first-degree murder in the high-profile shootings at the Bolsa Restaurant that happened on Jan. 1, 2009.
Innocent bystander Keni Su’a was killed in the crossfire – as gangster Sanjeev Mann was targeted and killed along with his associate Aaron Bendle.
A new trial was ordered after new evidence surfaced about the credibility of the Crown’s star witness after he confessed to an RCMP officer that he committed the murders.
Meanwhile, behind the scenes, police worked on “Operation Desino” which saw one high-ranking gang member turn on his friends and agree to testify against them in exchange for full immunity.
A publication ban protects that gang member’s identity and ultimately led to Roberto also agreeing to cooperate with the police.
Roberto became a witness for the prosecution in exchange for partial immunity– and a much-reduced sentence.
He pleaded guilty to lesser charges including three counts of conspiring to commit murder, discharging a restricted firearm with intent and commission of an offence for a criminal organization.
In a videotaped interview with Calgary police released to the media in 2013, Roberto admitted to committing a handful of murders.
“Five, and four of them were because of the war that I was involved in because I lost friends,” he said. “One was having to do business. Towards the end, I wasn’t even really about business or making money. It was always to get revenge because I lost people, I lost friends, and I knew they were coming after me so I wanted to get them first.”
According to court documents, Roberto is scheduled to speak to bail for the new charges in February.