A reputed Philadelphia mobster’s racketeering trial has been postponed at least a week because of a medical issue, according to court documents.
Accused mob boss Joseph (Skinny Joey) Merlino — whose trial was slated to start on Jan. 16 in Manhattan Federal Court — is in Florida recuperating from a heart ailment.
Merlino went to the Bacon Raton Regional Hospital emergency room on Tuesday, suffering from “chest pains and coronary spasms and shortness of breath,” one of his lawyers said Thursday.
Merlino, 55, has reportedly survived more than 25 attempted hits and beat three murder raps.
Hospital tests had “abnormal” results and “revealed two ‘significant’ blockages,” said Merlino’s attorney Edwin Jacobs.
The alleged gangster’s doctor said Merlino is on medication and needs to be under “close observation for adjustment of medication,” according to a letter submitted to the court.
As a result, the note explains, Merlino can’t fly or travel for at least two weeks.
The trial has been postponed until Jan. 22.
Merlino was supposed to be tried with suspected Genovese capo Eugene (Rooster) Onofrio, who has also got a health related delay.
Last month, the presiding judge separated the cases because of Onofrio’s “need for medical treatment.”
The trial of 75-year-old Onofrio is now “adjourned indefinitely,” court papers say.
Onofrio’s lawyers must check in with the judge by Jan. 26 and every month after that, to provide updates on his health and see if he is fit to stand trial.