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Organized Crime

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  1. 10.7 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    From atrocities that occurred before the establishment of New York’s police force in 1845 through the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in 2001 to the present day, this visual history is an insider’s look at more than eighty real-life crimes that shocked the nation, from arson to gangland murders, robberies, serial killers, bombings, and kidnappings, including:Architect Stanford White’s fatal shooting at Madison Square Garden over his deflowering of a teenage chorus girl.The anarchist bombing of Wall Street in 1920, which killed 39 people and injured hundreds more with flying shrapnel.The 1928 hit at the Park Sheraton Hotel on mobster Arnold Rothstein, who died refusing to name his shooter. Kitty Genovese’s 1964 senseless stabbing, famously witnessed by dozen of bystanders who did not intervene. Son of Sam, a serial killer who eluded police for months while terrorizing the city, was finally apprehended through a simple parking ticket. Perfect for crime buffs, urban historians, and fans of Serial and Making of a Murderer, this riveting collection details New York’s most startling and unsettling crimes through behind-the-scenes analysis of investigations and more than 500 revealing photographs.

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    Undisclosed Files of the Police by Robert Mladinich, Philip Messing, Bernard Whalen
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  2. 10.4 hrs • 9/13/2016 • Unabridged

    The story of two American teens recruited as killers for a Mexican cartel, and their pursuit by a Mexican American detective who realizes the War on Drugs is unwinnable. What’s it like to be an employee of a global drug-trafficking organization? And how does a fifteen-year-old American boy go from star quarterback to trained assassin, surging up the cartel corporate ladder? At first glance, Gabriel Cardona is the poster boy American teenager: great athlete, bright, handsome, and charismatic. But the streets of his border town of Laredo, Texas, are poor and dangerous, and it isn’t long before Gabriel abandons his promising future for the allure of the Zetas, a drug cartel with roots in the Mexican military. His younger friend Bart, as well as others from Gabriel’s childhood, join him in working for the Zetas, boosting cars and smuggling drugs, eventually catching the eye of the cartel’s leadership. Meanwhile, Mexican-born Detective Robert Garcia has worked hard all his life and is now struggling to raise his family in America. As violence spills over the border, Detective Garcia’s pursuit of the boys, and their cartel leaders, puts him face to face with the urgent consequences of a war he sees as unwinnable. In Wolf Boys Dan Slater shares their stories, taking us from the Sierra Madre mountaintops to the dusty, dark alleys of Laredo, Texas, on a harrowing, often brutal journey into the heart of the Mexican drug trade. Gabriel’s evolution from good-natured teenager into a feared assassin is as inevitable as Garcia’s slow realization of the futile nature of his work. A nonfiction thriller, Wolf Boys depicts more than just Gabriel, Bart, and the officers who took them down. It shows, through vivid detail and rich, often moving, narrative, the way in which the border itself is changing, disappearing, and posing new, terrifying, and yet largely unseen threats to American security. Ultimately though, Wolf Boys is the intimate story of the “lobos” themselves: boys turned into pawns for cartels. Their stories show how poverty, ideas about identity, and government ignorance have warped the definition of the American dream.

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    Wolf Boys

    10.4 hrs • 9/13/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 9.3 hrs • 7/12/2016 • Unabridged

    In what has been described as a true-life blend of Grumpy Old Men and Ocean’s Eleven, Sexy Beasts is an insider account of the 2015 Hatton Garden Heist, in which a group of retirement-age career criminals—the so-called “Diamond Geezers”—robbed a London jewelry vault, in what would be the biggest burglary in UK history. The Hatton Garden Heist captured the British public’s imagination more than another other crime since The Great Train Robbery. It was supposed to make a fortune for a team of old time professional criminals. Their last hurrah. A final lucrative job that would send the old codgers off on happy retirements to the badlands of Spain and beyond. It seemed to be the stuff of legends. Tens of millions of dollars worth of valuables grabbed from safety deposit boxes in a vault beneath one of the most famous jewelry districts in the world. But where did it all go wrong for this band of old time villains? And how did the gang’s bid to pull off the world’s biggest burglary turn into a deadly game of cat and mouse featuring the police and London’s most dangerous crime lords. Nobody is better placed to reveal the full story of the Hatton Garden Heist than Britain’s best-connected true crime writer, Wensley Clarkson. Through his unparalleled contacts inside the criminal underworld, he’s finally able to reveal the astonishing details behind Britain’s biggest ever burglary.

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    Sexy Beasts

    9.3 hrs • 7/12/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 1 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5 (1)
    13.2 hrs • 4/19/2016 • Unabridged

    Snatched is the electric tale by the New York Times bestselling author of Blow, Bruce Porter, that tells the true story of a woman caught between two worlds, with her life dangling in the balance. Raised an aristocrat in Colombia and educated in European schools, Pilar transfixes everyone with her charm and her guile. She also falls for dangerous men and finds herself drawn into the highest levels of the cocaine trade. After two failed marriages and a harrowing escape from the drug life, she settles down to a quiet existence in Florida with her children—until her second husband tries to cut short his prison term by giving her name over to members of a new task force being formed by the DEA. They induce Pilar, now a middle-aged woman, to infiltrate the Cali cartel as the head of a vast money-laundering sting. Named Operation Princess, the scheme leads to the seizure of tens of millions of dollars, along with some $500 million worth of cocaine and the exposure of hundreds of high-level traffickers, becoming one of the most daring and successful stings in DEA history. But Pilar plays her part too well. Her success as a money launderer gets her kidnapped and then ransomed by a band of guerrillas in South America—and the United States government refuses to negotiate. It’s left to her low-level handlers in the DEA to get her back before her kidnappers discover they have a federal agent in their clutches.

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    Snatched by Bruce Porter

    Snatched

    13.2 hrs • 4/19/16 • Unabridged
    1 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5 (1)
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  5. 9.3 hrs • 2/23/2016

    Nemesis is the story of an ordinary man who became the king of the largest slum in Rio, the head of a drug cartel, and perhaps Brazil’s most wanted criminal. It’s a gripping tale of gold-hunters and evangelical pastors, bent police and rich-kid addicts, quixotic politicians and drug lords with math degrees. Traversing through rain forests and high-security prisons, filthy slums and glittering shopping malls, this is also the story of how change came to Brazil. Of a country’s journey into the global spotlight, and the battle for the beautiful but damned city of Rio, as it struggles to break free from a tangled web of corruption, violence, drugs, and poverty.

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    Nemesis

    9.3 hrs • 2/23/16
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  6. 16.1 hrs • 9/15/2015 • Unabridged

    In this riveting new book from the author of The Westies and Paddy Whacked, New York Times bestselling author T. J. English offers a front-row seat at the trial of Whitey Bulger and an intimate view of the world of organized crime—and law enforcement—that made him the defining Irish American gangster. For sixteen years Whitey Bulger eluded the long reach of the law. For decades one of the most dangerous men in America, Bulger—the brother of influential Massachusetts senator Billy Bulger—was often romanticized as a Robin Hood–like thief and protector. While he was functioning as the de facto mob boss of New England, Bulger was also serving as a top-echelon informant for the FBI, covertly feeding local prosecutors information about other mob figures—while using their cover to cleverly eliminate his rivals, reinforce his own power, and protect himself from prosecution. Then, in 2011 he was arrested in Southern California and returned to Boston, where he was tried and convicted of racketeering and murder. Our greatest chronicler of the Irish mob in America, T. J. English covered the trial at close range—by day in the courtroom, but also on nights and weekends, interviewing Bulger’s associates as well as lawyers, former federal agents, and even members of the jury in the backyards and barrooms of Whitey’s world. In Where the Bodies Were Buried, he offers a startlingly revisionist account of Bulger’s story—and of the decades-long culture of collusion between the feds and the Irish and Italian mob factions that have ruled New England since the 1970s, when a fateful deal left the FBI fatally compromised. English offers an authoritative look at Bulger’s own understanding of his relationship with the FBI and his alleged immunity deal, and illuminates how gangsterism, politics, and law enforcement have continued to be intertwined in Boston. As complex, harrowing, and human as a Scorsese film, Where the Bodies Were Buried is the last word on a reign of terror that many feared would never end.

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    Where the Bodies Were Buried

    16.1 hrs • 9/15/15 • Unabridged
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  7. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    5.6 hrs • 8/4/2015 • Unabridged

    The bizarre true story of the criminals behind the second-largest bank heist in American history One night in a small North Carolina town, a down-on-his-luck guard at Loomis Fargo manages to steal $17 million—literally more than one ton of cash. Despite being caught on camera wheeling the money from the vault to the getaway van, David Ghantt makes off to Mexico before the FBI can blink. There’s just one hitch: Ghantt has entrusted the money to an oddball crew of accomplices who had wooed him into committing this massive theft in the first place—and who, he soon learns, are trying to take him out. Now one of the most wanted men in America, and with the FBI hot on his heels, Ghantt must figure out how to get his money, get away from a hit man, and get even. In this outrageously entertaining book, Jeff Diamant, the Charlotte Observer’s lead reporter on the case, offers the definitive inside account of this astonishing true story that has captivated American audiences on the news.

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    Heist by Jeff Diamant

    Heist

    5.6 hrs • 8/4/15 • Unabridged
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  8. 16.0 hrs • 7/14/2015 • Unabridged

    From the author of the #1 international bestseller Gomorrah comes an electrifying investigation of the international cocaine trade, as vicious as it is powerful, and its hidden role in the global economy In many countries, “000” flour is the finest on the market. It is hard to find, but it is soft, light, almost impalpable—like the purest, highest quality grade of cocaine. ZeroZeroZero is also the title of Roberto Saviano’s unforgettable, internationally bestselling exploration of the inner workings of the global cocaine trade—its rules and armies, and the true depth of its reach into the world economy and, by extension, its grasp on us all. Gomorrah, Saviano’s explosive account of the Neapolitan mob, the Camorra, was a worldwide publishing sensation. It struck such a nerve with the Camorra that Saviano has had to live under twenty-four-hour police protection for more than eight years. During this time he has come to know law enforcement agencies and officials around the world. With their cooperation, Saviano has broadened his perspective to take in the entire global “corporate” entity that is the drug trade and the complex money-laundering operations that allow it to function, often with the complicity of the world’s biggest banks. The result is a truly harrowing and groundbreaking synthesis of intimate literary narrative and geopolitical analysis of one of the most powerful dark forces in our economy. Saviano tracks the shift in the cocaine trade’s axis of power, from Colombia to Mexico, and relates how the Latin American cartels and gangs have forged alliances, first with the Italian crime syndicates, then with the Russians, Africans, and others. On the one hand, he charts a remarkable increase in sophistication as these criminal entities diversify into many other products and markets. On the other, he reveals the astonishing increase in the severity of violence as they have fought to protect and extend their power. Saviano is a writer and journalist of rare courage and a thinker of impressive intellectual depth, able to see the connections between farflung phenomena and bind them into a single epic story. Most drug-war narratives feel safely removed from our own lives; Saviano’s offers no such comfort. As heart racing as it is heady, ZeroZeroZero is a fusion of disparate genres into a brilliant new form that can rightly be called Savianoesque.

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    ZeroZeroZero

    Translated by Virginia Jewiss
    Read by Paul Michael
    16.0 hrs • 7/14/15 • Unabridged
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  9. 10.3 hrs • 7/7/2015 • Unabridged

    One of America’s greatest investigative reporters brings to life the gripping, no-holds-barred clash of two American titans: Robert Kennedy and his nemesis Jimmy Hoffa. From 1957 to 1964, Robert Kennedy and Jimmy Hoffa channeled nearly all of their considerable powers into destroying each other. Kennedy’s battle with Hoffa burst into the public consciousness with the 1957 Senate Rackets Committee hearings and intensified when his brother named him attorney general in 1961. RFK put together a “Get Hoffa” squad within the Justice Department, devoted to destroying one man. But Hoffa, with nearly unlimited Teamster funds, was not about to roll over. Drawing upon a treasure trove of previously secret and undisclosed documents, James Neff has crafted a brilliant, heart-pounding epic of crime and punishment, a saga of venom and relentlessness, and two men willing to do anything to demolish each other.

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    Vendetta by James Neff

    Vendetta

    10.3 hrs • 7/7/15 • Unabridged
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  10. 9.4 hrs • 6/9/2015 • Unabridged

    The page-turning, inside account of how three kids from Florida became big-time weapons traders—and how the United States government turned on them In January of 2007, three young stoners from Miami Beach won a $300 million Department of Defense contract to supply ammunition to the Afghanistan military. Incredibly, instead of fulfilling the order with high-quality arms, Efraim Diveroli, David Packouz, and Alex Podrizki—the dudes—bought cheap Communist-style surplus ammunition from Balkan gunrunners. The dudes then secretly repackaged millions of rounds of shoddy Chinese ammunition and shipped it to Kabul—until they were caught by Pentagon investigators and the scandal turned up on the front page of the New York Times. That’s the “official” story. The truth is far more explosive. For the first time, journalist Guy Lawson tells the thrilling true tale. It’s a trip that goes from a dive apartment in Miami Beach to mountain caves in Albania, the corridors of power in Washington, and the front lines of Iraq and Afghanistan. Lawson’s account includes a shady Swiss gunrunner, Russian arms dealers, corrupt Albanian gangsters, and a Pentagon investigation that impeded America’s war efforts in Afghanistan. Lawson exposes the mysterious and murky world of global arms dealing, showing how the American military came to use private contractors like Diveroli, Packouz, and Podrizki as middlemen to secure weapons from illegal arms dealers—the same men who sell guns to dictators, warlords, and drug traffickers. This is a story you were never meant to read.

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    Arms and the Dudes

    9.4 hrs • 6/9/15 • Unabridged
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  11. 8.4 hrs • 6/1/2015 • Unabridged

    A stunning tell-all from a former Chicago cop who worked closely with the chief of detectives while maintaining a friendship with his old friend who had mob connections.

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    Mob Cop

    8.4 hrs • 6/1/15 • Unabridged
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  12. 7.0 hrs • 3/17/2015 • Unabridged

    The definitive story of the greatest art theft in history In a secret meeting in 1981, a master thief named Louis Royce gave career gangster Ralph Rossetti the tip of a lifetime. As a kid, Royce had visited the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and made a habit of sneaking in at night to find a good place to sleep. He knew the museum’s security was lax, and he gave this information to a boss of the Boston criminal underworld. It took years before the museum was hit. But when it finally happened, it quickly became one of the most infamous art heists in history: thirteen works of art valued at up to $500 million—including Rembrandt’s “The Storm on the Sea of Galilee.”—were stolen. The identity of the thieves was a mystery, and the paintings were never found. What happened in those intervening years? Which Boston crew landed the big score? And why, more than twenty years later, did the FBI issue a press conference stating that they knew who had pulled off the heist and what had happened to the artwork but provided no identities and scant details? These mysteries are the story of Stephen Kurkjian’s revealing book. He takes the listener deep into the Boston mob and paints the most complete and compelling picture of this story ever told.

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    Master Thieves

    7.0 hrs • 3/17/15 • Unabridged
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  13. 9.4 hrs • 1/27/2015 • Unabridged

    From the New York Times bestselling author of Blood and Honor and The Last Gangster comes the sure to be headline-making inside story of the Gotti and Gambino families, told from the unique viewpoint of notorious mob hit man John Alite, a close associate of Junior Gotti who later testified against him. In Gotti’s Rules, George Anastasia, a prize-winning reporter who spent over thirty years covering crime, offers a shocking and very rare glimpse into the Gotti family, witnessed up close from former family insider John Alite, John Gotti Jr.’s longtime friend and protector. Until now, no one has given up the kind of personal details about the Gottis—including the legendary “Gotti Rules” of leadership—that Anastasia exposes here. Drawing on extensive FBI files and other documentation, his own knowledge, and exclusive interviews with insiders and experts, including mob-enforcer-turned-government-witness Alite, Anastasia pokes holes in the Gotti legend, demystifying this notorious family and its lucrative and often deadly machinations. Anastasia offers never-before-heard information about the murders, drug dealing, and extortion that propelled John J. Gotti to the top of the Gambino crime family and the treachery and deceit that allowed John A. “Junior” Gotti to follow in his father’s footsteps. Told from street level and through the eyes of a wiseguy who saw it all firsthand, the result is a riveting look at a family whose hubris, violence, passion, and greed fueled a bloody rise and devastating fall that is still reverberating through the American underworld today.

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    Gotti’s Rules

    9.4 hrs • 1/27/15 • Unabridged
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  14. 11.1 hrs • 1/1/2015 • Unabridged

    Bob Cooley was the Chicago Mafia’s “mechanic”—a fixer of court cases. During the 1970s and ’80s, Cooley bribed judges, court clerks, and cops to keep his Mob clients—hit men, bookies, racketeers, and crooked pols—out of jail. Paid handsomely for his services, he lived fast and enjoyed the protection of the men he served. He had enough money to blow on all the vices the Windy City could offer, and enough standing among mobsters to know he would never be caught. Yet, through the ’90s, Cooley became the star witness in a series of trials that took down the Chicago outfit, arguably the most powerful Mafia family in the history of organized crime. This is the story of a Mob lawyer turned mole with a million-dollar contract on his head, a man who has clanged back and forth between sin and sainthood like a church bell clapper—a turbulent youth, a stint on Chicago’s police force, law school, and then the inner sanctum of Chicago’s leading mobsters and corrupt political officials. With wild abandon he chased crooked acquittals for the likes of Pat Marcy, an Al Capone protégé, who had become the Mob’s key political operative; ruthless Mafia capo and gambling czar Marco D’Amico; and notorious hit man Harry Aleman. He dined with Mob bosses and shared “last suppers” with friends before their gangland executions. Cooley watched as Marcy and the Mob controlled the courts, the cops, and the politicians. Then, in a startling act of conscience, he walked into the office of the US Organized Crime Strike Force and, without a pending conviction or a hit man on his tail, agreed to wear a wire on the same Mafia overlords who had made him a player. Cooley’s tapes and testimony would be at the center of nine landmark trials that together exposed and then broke the Mob’s unprecedented stranglehold on Chicago’s government and court system. With stunning detail and brutal honesty, Cooley now tells the personal story behind the federal government’s most successful Mafia investigation.

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    When Corruption Was King by Robert Cooley

    When Corruption Was King

    By Robert Cooley, with Hillel Levin
    11.1 hrs • 1/1/15 • Unabridged
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  15. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    7.3 hrs • 12/9/2014 • Unabridged

    The true story of how the most notorious action bowler of all time became a Hall of Famer. Most of us think of bowling as a “sport” in quotation marks, and bowling alleys are places with disco balls, matching shirts, and funny shoes. But in the 1960s, New York City was the center of “action bowling,” a form of high-stakes gambling in which bowlers—often teenagers—faced off for thousands of dollars every night. When money like that is changing hands, you can bet the pressure is on (and the balls are rigged), and losses come with dire consequences. But for a few kids, the world of action bowling would turn out to be a ticket off the mean streets and onto the Professional Bowlers Association Tour. For Ernie Schlegel, it would be a chance to shed his hustler ways and become a bona fide champion.

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    Pin Action

    7.3 hrs • 12/9/14 • Unabridged
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  16. 6.9 hrs • 11/18/2014 • Unabridged

    In the vein of Erin Brockovich, The Departed, and T. J. English’s Savage City comes Busted, the shocking true story of the biggest police corruption scandal in Philadelphia history, a tale of drugs, power, and abuse involving a rogue narcotics squad, a confidential informant, and two veteran journalists whose reporting drove a full-scale FBI probe, rocked the City of Brotherly Love, and earned a Pulitzer Prize. In 2003 Benny Martinez became a confidential informant for a member of the Philadelphia Police Department’s narcotics squad, helping arrest nearly two hundred drug and gun dealers over seven years. But that success masked a dark and dangerous reality: the cops were as corrupt as the criminals they targeted. In addition to fabricating busts, the squad systematically looted mom-and-pop stores, terrorizing hardworking immigrant owners. One squad member also sexually assaulted three women during raids. Frightened for his life, Martinez turned to Philadelphia Daily News reporters Wendy Ruderman and Barbara Laker. Busted chronicles how these two journalists—both middle-class working mothers—formed an unlikely bond with a convicted street dealer to uncover the secrets of ruthless kingpins and dirty cops. Professionals in an industry shrinking from severe financial cutbacks, Ruderman and Laker had few resources—besides their own grit and tenacity—to break a dangerous, complex story that would expose the rotten underbelly of a modern American city and earn them a Pulitzer Prize. A page-turning thriller based on superb reportage, Busted is modern true crime at its finest.

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    Busted

    6.9 hrs • 11/18/14 • Unabridged
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