NEWARK, NJ - A career criminal whose rap sheet includes bank robberies and a murder conspiracy has been sentenced to 16 years in prison for killing a New Jersey political consultant in exchange for money back in 2014.George Bratsenis, 74, pleaded guilty a year ago to a charge that he and another man accepted thousands of dollars from another political consultant, Sean Caddle, in exchange for killing Michael Galdieri. Galdieri was stabbed to death in his Jersey City apartment, which was then set on fire.U.S.
District Judge John Michael Vazquez imposed the 16-year sentence Wednesday, plus five years of supervised release n federal court in Newark.A man who served time in a New Jersey prison with Bratsenis in the early 2000s, Bomani Africa, also pleaded guilty in the killing and was sentenced last month to 20 years. He named Bratsenis as the accomplice who helped kill Galdieri.Caddle was well-known in northern New Jersey politics.
His one-time clients included current Democratic U.S. Sen.
Bob Menendez and former Democratic state senator and gubernatorial candidate Raymond Lesniak.Caddle’s plea agreement referred briefly and opaquely to him providing investigators with information, but didn’t say what. He pleaded to conspiring to commit murder-for-hire in January 2022 and hasn't been sentenced yet.
The U.S. attorney’s office has declined comment, as has an attorney for Bratsenis.Questions still surround the case over why the plot was put in motion, how Caddle was linked to the two ex-convicts and why federal prosecutors have said so little about the crime.Less mysterious is the depth and breadth of Bratsenis’s criminal past.Bratsenis served in the Marines from 1968 to 1974, and then began racking up convictions in