The ex-husband of “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star Dina Manzo was arrested Tuesday for allegedly enlisting a mobster to assault Manzo’s current husband in 2015, authorities said. Thomas Manzo, 55, and John Perna, 43, were charged with allegedly committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering activity and conspiracy to commit a violent crime, according to an indictment released by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Jersey.
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The documents allege that Manzo, co-owner of a New Jersey restaurant and wedding venue, offered Perna — allegedly a made member of one of New York City’s most notorious organized crime groups, the Lucchese crime family — a deal: In exchange for a discounted or free wedding, Perna would leave his ex-wife's then boyfriend with a permanent facial scar, the documents say.
On July 18, 2015, in a strip mall parking lot in Passaic County, New Jersey, Perna and an unidentified member of his crew allegedly assaulted the man, the documents say. Perna allegedly used a slap jack during the beating.
Less than a month later, Perna was scheduled to hold his wedding at Manzo’s venue, the documents say.
Perna was also charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud after he allegedly filed a false police report and an insurance claim totaling $17,816 over a 2006 Mercedes that he said had been stolen and destroyed.
An unidentified member of the Lucchese crime family told authorities that he had actually driven the Mercedes to Newark and set it on fire.
It wasn't immediately clear if Manzo or Perna have lawyers.
Tim Stelloh Tim Stelloh is a reporter for NBC News, based in California.
Diana Dasrath contributed.