As Sens. John Kerry and John Edwards arrived in Boston today for the Democratic National Convention, so did the California man who is their single biggest contributor.
He is Stephen Bing, a wealthy film producer who, with little fanfare, has managed to steer a total of more than $16 million of his money to Democratic candidates and the supposedly independent groups that support them.
In fact, Democratic Party officials said they knew nothing about the man who law enforcement officials tell ABC News is Bing's friend and business partner — Dominic Montemarano, a New York Mafia figure currently in federal prison on racketeering charges.
Montemarano has a long criminal record and is known to organized crime investigators by his street name, Donnie Shacks.
"Donnie Shacks' main activity was murder. No question about it. That was his main function for the Colombo family and for organized crime in general. He was one of the top hit men in the New York area," said Joe Coffey, a former NYPD investigator.
According to The Los Angeles Times, Bing paid Montemarano's legal fees after his most recent scrape with the law. Montemerano's lawyer said his client was an employee of Bing's.