A former Mafia soldier has admitted orchestrating the nationwide collapse of country-themed restaurants, including eight in Florida, one of them in Gainesville. 

Frank Capri told a federal judge in Arizona that he intentionally caused the failure of  Rascal Flatts and Toby Keith-branded restaurants in a scam that began in 2011. 

Among those were Rascal Flatts projects that fell apart in Gainesville and Orlando, and three others planned in Fort Lauderdale, Miami and Tampa. 

They also included a Toby Keith restaurant in Orlando that closed a few months after opening in 2015 and projects in Lakeland and Jacksonville that never materialized. 

Capri, who said at one point he was pocketing as much as $250,000 a week, pleaded guilty on Aug. 10 to one count each of conspiracy and tax evasion.   

Speaking via telephone to a near empty courtroom, Capri agreed to repay up to $18 million that he swindled out of developers between…

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