Donnie Brasco vs. Bonnano
In 1976, special agent Joe Pistone was sent by the FBI to infiltrate the mafia in Little Italy, New York. He chose a new identity, of a burglar and a thief, under the name of Donnie Brasco.
He came to Little Italy one day, as a stranger and an outsider, and slowly built his way up into the mafia scene at the time. He learned by heart all their unspoken rules and became friends with a series of mobsters and gangsters, while he was secretly gathering crucial intelligence about their businesses.
He succeeded to infiltrate in Bonnano family, a mafia organization with a major influence at the time. He started doing business with Lefty Ruggiero and Dominik “Sonny Black” Napolitano, where he learned everything about how Mafia works.
The decision to send agent Joe Pistone on an undercover mission was made after years of attempts by the FBI to gather intelligence about the Mafia. Up until that point, no one succeeded to gather enough information for any serious conviction, because of their code of silence, known in Mafia lore as Omertà.
Lastly, the FBI made more than 100 federal convictions based on what agent Joe Pistone had done.
His work and life became an inspiration for the movies and definitely was set as an example for the following cases.