(CNN) — Test results on material found at the former New York home of late gangster Jimmy “The Gent” Burke have come back positive for human remains, a spokeswoman for the New York City medical examiner’s office said Monday.
An anthropological investigation is now under way on the material, said office spokeswoman Grace Brugess. She said investigators will try to extract DNA from the remains to try to identify who was buried there.
On Wednesday night, investigators at Ozone Park in Queens finished the search for remains possibly connected to a case that happened before 1996, said a law enforcement source who spoke on condition of anonymity last week.
According to public records, the house is now owned by Burke’s daughter, Catherine Burke, who declined Tuesday to comment to CNN.
James Burke died in 1996. According to his obituary in The New York Times, he was serving a 20-years-to-life sentence in a New York prison when he fell ill with cancer.
Robert De Niro played Burke as Jimmy Conway in the 1990 Martin Scorsese classic mafia film “Goodfellas,” and Burke is probably best known as the alleged mastermind of the 1978 Lufthansa heist, an $8 million robbery at John F. Kennedy International Airport, which was the largest robbery in history at the time.
The source said that Burke and his cohorts, closely associated with top members of the Lucchese crime family, also were allegedly involved in a number of other activities — so the search in Queens may not be related to the Lufthansa heist.