• authored by remote viewer
  • published Fri, Jun 4, 2004

Checking in: What's Up At the Travelodge?

In another thread Secret Agent asked if anyone knew about the latest happenings at what is now the Travelodge Hotel on Keele Street in Toronto.

I'm writing an article about what I know as we speak. It should be ready in a couple of days.

Union-related goings-on at this hotel have fascinated me for years - probably for as long as I've lived in Toronto (and that's a long time now). The former Triumph Hotel has been the site of some really interesting stories involving HERE, the UFCW, the Textile Processors Union and of course has been the recipient of mucho de moolah from UFCW Canada's pension fund - CCWIPP.

I drive past the place pretty much every day and a couple of months ago I noticed the sign advertising that it was going to be turned into condos.

Last month, I saw a story in the Toronto Star that talked about the new condos and about the builder - a guy who had apparently worked as a labourer on the building when it was constructed back in the 1970's had now bought the place and was turning it into some pretty spiffy condos.

Hmmm...I wondered to myself.

So one day shortly thereafter a colleague and I stopped in at the sales center. Then we made a few other stops. Stay tuned...

  • posted by weiser
  • Fri, Jun 4, 2004 3:03pm

Oh that's a fine hotel with a colorful past.

  • posted by Elise Grace
  • Fri, Jun 4, 2004 6:07pm

I can't wait to find out...

  • posted by weiser
  • Sat, Jun 5, 2004 9:24pm

Ya, it's been quite the hangout over the years:


...The beginning of the end for Paul Volpe may have started in the Triumph Hotel, a modest, 10-storey building that still stands, under a new name, in north Toronto.

On Friday, Nov. 11, 1983, three men huddled at the Triumph: Pietro "Peter" Scarcella, a friend and sometimes chauffeur for Volpe; Enio Mora, a mobster known as "Pegleg" because of a missing limb that gave his walk an ominous tilt; and a Toronto property developer.

The meeting was secretly monitored by police, according to an investigator involved in a police probe into allegations of labour racketeering.

"They were having real heart-to-heart discussions," says Jack McCombs, who retired in 1994 from the OPP after years of working anti-mob investigations.

"There was some activity that was happening and it was quite obvious they were planning on something big," Mr. McCombs says....

....After the death in 1974 of Stefano "The Undertaker" Magaddino, Buffalo's powerful Godfather, the family split into rival factions. One, under Salvatore Pieri, supported Volpe as their man in Ontario, the other supported Hamilton gangster Johnny "Pops" Papalia. In 1981, just when Volpe needed backing the most, Pieri died, leaving his rivals on top and Volpe looking vulnerable....

  • posted by lefkenny
  • Sat, Jun 5, 2004 10:05pm


Cosimo was the eldest of three brothers that were born in Siderno, Calabria, Italy. His father was murdered in Siderno in some sort of Mafia shoot out. Following this Cosimo's mother immigrated to Canada in 1961 when Cosimo was just 15 years old. Cosimo's father was very well acquainted with the old Siderno Godfather, now residing in Ontario, Michele Racco. It was this relationship that would serve the Commisso's well, especially Cosimo.

From the time Cosimo and his brother Remo were kids all they could talk about was avenging their father's murder. Remo was always calling relatives in Calabria and would sometimes travel to handle contracts. Like all Mafia families the Commisso's were heavily involved in a number of rackets, they held court at their club the Casa Commisso, a large banquet hall in Toronto.

Michele Racco allowed the Commisso family to grow, and indeed passed over to them many business opportunities. The Commisso's also kept up good relations with the clans in Calabria; this allowed the Commisso's the opportunities for joint ventures should the possibility ever arise. Cosimo was the boss of the clan and Remo was like the underboss. Remo was the dealmaker, always travelling around in order to seal business opportunities. In many ways Cosimo was typical Italian mob boss. He was overweight and spoke with a thick Calabrian accent. But he was never afraid to make the right decision whenever needed, an attribute vital for any Mafia leader. During the mid 70's, the Commisso's were getting heavily involved with the construction business, and union corruption. On top of this they were also into restaurant extortions, and if any were reluctant to pay up their new tough ex-biker enforcer, Cecil Kirby, would bomb them.

Cecil Kirby was brought into the Commisso clan as their new enforcer and always dealt with Cosimo. Kirby was promised many things, and lots of money. But time after time Kirby was let down by his new employer. Kirby handled many things for the Commisso`s, murder, bombings, shakedowns and plenty more. He came in very handy indeed; he rarely turned a job down, and more often than not successfully carried them out. Maybe it was because Kirby wasn't a native Calabrian that Cosimo constantly let him down with payments. However Kirby wasn't afraid of telling him so either, and this would set off a chain of events that would bring the Commisso clan crashing down. Between Cosimo and Kirby the two men began to feel the friction caused by the lack of payments by Cosimo. Also Kirby knew that because he wasn't Calabrian, he therefore knew that the Commisso`s wouldn't think twice about putting him away.

Fearing this Kirby went to the RCMP and began to offer snippets of information. It was late 1980, and Kirby was just getting started. For the next 18 months or so, Kirby wore wires and started tapping highly incriminating conversations. So much so that Kirby received enough information to avoid the murder of Paul Volpe, another mob boss in Toronto, who was currently at loggerheads with the Commisso`s.

By 1981 Cecil Kirby had gathered enough information to put the away the Commisso brothers away for a quite a while. Cosimo received 8 years for conspiracy to commit the murder of Paul Volpe and a further 2 years for assault. Remo also received 8 years for conspiracy to commit the murder of Paul Volpe. Michele Commisso the youngest of three brothers received 2 and half years for his part in the conspiracy.

In 1984, Cosimo and Remo received further sentencing. Cosimo was sentence another 8 years for a variety of crimes such as extortion, arson and assault. Remo was given another 8 and half years for similar crimes.

  • posted by lefkenny
  • Sat, Jun 5, 2004 10:11pm

Even the WE Travel has it listed as a hotel of choice

We can't mention who owns WE Travel because mr. fire will get all upset.

  • posted by remote viewer
  • Sun, Jun 6, 2004 5:34am

Oh what the heck a_u. It's Sunday - let's piss some mainstream unionists right off.

Wetravel is another one of those enterprises that CLC Pres Bro_Ken Georgetti helped set up. It's a union business that's run by business unionists.


Georgetti once chaired a holding company, Working Enterprises Limited, which is owned by six unions and the BC Federation of Labour. Working Enterprises, in turn, owns an insurance company, Working Enterprises Insurance Services, which is one of the largest in the province behind the BC Automobile Association. The holding company also owns a large travel agency, called Working Enterprises Travel Services, which has an office in Ottawa and which books union travel across the country. Another subsidiary, United Capital Corporation, is a full-service brokerage firm that manages $400 million, including several union funds as well as individuals' investments. [i]From our controversial two-part series Men Who Sleep With Wolves

  • posted by weiser
  • Sun, Jun 6, 2004 7:33am

Oh the union business guys love to run businesses. UFCW 832 honcho Bernie Christophe is in the travel business too. Stupid advice to unions: Offer cheap trips and workers will join your union. Check out the fine people on the Board by clicking on the "Board Members" link.

Bernie was a kingpin at Case Financial too until Cliff replaced him.

Some companies pay their board members big bucks to simply attend meetings--even by phone. Ah, there's no life like it.

And if they can't put ya' on the Board, they hire ya'. Take old Chuck for example. He used to run the old UFCW Local 206, Cliff's baby local, and then went to work for Bernie until he retired.

  • posted by siggy
  • Sun, Jun 6, 2004 8:00am


Wetravel is another one of those enterprises that CLC Pres Bro_Ken Georgetti helped set up. It's a union business that's run by business unionists.

When the hell do these fine leaders find the time to do the work they are being paid to do for labour, neva'mind, it's obvious.

Could it be any clearer, labour is in deplorable and irreparable condition and the labour fakers can't see the burning workers for the hotdogs.

I'm no longer surprised by machinehead conflicts of interests, it appears to be the norm, leaders milking memberships, what else is new?

Podmore, labourtubby and of Concert properties fame, was guested on a telethon for children's hospital this weekend, for his role on the board. The host asked him how he kept up with everything he was involved in; where did he find the time to sit on so many boards?

Well after awhile the board positions pro'lly pay for themselves, you can hire and pay for lots of help if you've got a couple dozen paychecks rolling in.

Im willing to bet my one small paycheck, they don't know what the f**k it is they're doing and that shuffling is their forte.

Change or get the hell out of the way, you're killing labour!

  • posted by weiser
  • Mon, Jun 7, 2004 4:32pm

It's tough all over for the Union biz guys. CCWIPP's favorite hotel company just had a cease trade order slapped on its insiders -- including Wayne Hanley of UFCW Local 175.

  • posted by siggy
  • Mon, Jun 7, 2004 8:42pm


CCWIPP's favorite hotel company just had a cease trade order slapped on its insiders -- including Wayne Hanley of UFCW Local 175.

if I'm not mistaken, the cease trade is effective up and until two(2) working days after afm files a financial statement.

I wonder why afm didn't file a financial statement? What's up with that?

  • posted by weiser
  • Tue, Jun 8, 2004 3:09pm

They've gone through three Chief Financial Officers in just over a year. They say:


AFM recently announced the appointment of James D. Meier as its new CFO on April 27, 2004. Mr. Meier, with the concurrence of Company's management and its board of directors, believes it is prudent to invest additional time to review AFM's books, records,
and related disclosures in accordance with company guidelines and the new disclosure standards as AFM completed several complex transactions during 2003.


  • posted by weiser
  • Wed, Jun 9, 2004 9:09am

What's even better is that these UFCW guys sit on the board of company that manages a bunch of Burger King restaurants.

The new UFCW recruitment slogan: Have It Your Way!

  • posted by remote viewer
  • Thu, Jun 10, 2004 9:16am

Or maybe There's a little McDonald's in everyone?

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