Decorated ex-deputy U.S. marshal John Ambrose was sentenced to four years in prison yesterday for leaking that mob hit man Nicholas Calabrese was secretly cooperating with authorities, the Chicago Tribune reports. His attorneys argued that he did no more than “foolishly boast” to a trusted father figure that he protected Calabrese during two Chicago visits. Prosecutors said the damage was far more severe and represented the first security breach of the super-secret federal witness protection program.
“This is a serious chink in the armor of a program that cannot be ignored or taken lightly,” sais prosecutor Diane MacArthur. U.S. District Judge John Grady said Ambrose abused his position to obtain information and relay it to family friend William Guide, knowing he would pass it on to organized crime figures. Guide is a former Chicago police officer who was convicted with Ambrose’s father in the Marquette 10 police corruption trial in the 1980s. “What (Ambrose) wanted to do, I believe, is assist Mr. Guide in building his relationship with the mob by providing a pipeline into the witness protection program,” the judge said. “It had to be a huge feather in Guide’s cap. There is nothing that justifies what Mr. Ambrose did.”