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Deal with the Devil: The FBI's Secret Thirty-Year Relationship with a Mafia Killer Paperback – 14 Aug 2014
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“Deal with the Devil is a blistering account of a cunning and brutal Mafia capo. . . Packed with revelations, it offers the most penetrating look into the inner workings of the Mafia since The Valachi Papers.” (Nicholas Gage)
“[A] thrilling account. . . This scrupulously investigated tale. . . will have true crime fans on the edge of their seats (Publishers Weekly, starred review)
“A meticulously researched and frightening account of the long term relationship between the FBI and vicious Mafia thug Gregory Scarpa Sr. . . Stunning revelations.”” (Booklist)
“An exhaustive examination into the life and crimes of Mafia capo Gregory Scarpa Sr. and his questionable decades long relationship with the FBI. . . extensively researched. . .Aficionados of Mafia history and those concerned with FBI corruption will find this thorough investigation satisfying.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“The perfect mix of thorough research and gripping storytelling.” (NPR)
“An impressive piece of work. . . This is a book that has true potential to change history.” (Crimespree Magazine)
From the Back Cover
Five-time Emmy Award-winning investigative reporter Peter Lance draws on three decades of once-secret FBI files and exclusive new interviews to disclose the epic saga of Colombo family capo Gregory Scarpa Sr.
"The perfect mix of thorough research and gripping storytelling."—NPRGregory Scarpa Sr. spent more than thirty years as a paid top echelon FBI informant while wreaking havoc as a drug dealer, loan shark, bank robber, hijacker, high-end securities thief, and killer. A Mafia capo whose nicknames were "Grim Reaper" and "Killing Machine," Scarpa was enlisted by the FBI in the 1960s. His debriefings on Mafia activities went straight to J. Edgar Hoover, revealing the structure of Cosa Nostra long before the celebrated Valachi hearings. In forty-two years of murder and racketeering, Scarpa served only thirty days in jail. But Scarpa's most deadly reign of terror came from 1980 to 1992—while he was a paid informant under Supervisory Special Agent R. Lindley DeVecchio, who ran two organized crime squads in the FBI's New York Office.
In Deal with the Devil, Peter Lance peels back the layers of Scarpa's unholy alliance with the FBI. Through exclusive interviews with Scarpa's son and other wiseguys and more than 1,150 pages of confidential briefing memos, Lance traces links between the Scarpa case, the infamous Mafia Cops case, and more in this page-turning work of investigative journalism that reads like a Scorsese film.See all Product description
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Top customer reviews
An enthralling account written with all of the pace of a top movie
Specifically the part where the Black FBI guy (pretending to be a violent Black Panther type) has the local Mayor tied up and, as he plays with the straight razor he's holding, he tell a story about some Klan guys slicing off a young Black guys balls and letting him bleed to death....?
Not surprisingly the Mayor quickly reassesses his policy of silent non-cooperation and tells the big Black guy with the straight razor EVERYTHING.
In real life the FBI didn't use a Black agent, posing as a radical.
They did something far worse.
They had their long time informant - a serial killing, drug dealing, Mafioso and paid informant called Gregg Scarpa, tie up the towns Mayor and convince him to reveal his secrets.
This led to the FBI locating the corpses of the three young civil rights activists who had been murdered by local 'law enforcement'.
And to the arrest and conviction of several men involved in the crimes.
I can only imagine that this true version of events was left out of the movie because, like the man said:
"Fiction has to make sense, facts don't".
Plus it would make the Feds seem less heroic.
They may have been fighting KKK racist murderers but knowing that they did it by using a psychotic mobster - one who was allowed to escape punishment for hundreds of serious crimes because his informant status provided him protection from the Federal Government (much like Whitey Bulger) for decades of his criminal career.....that kind of thing could make Special Agents seem a touch less special.
Definition of Irony
Scarpa was too racist to accept a hospital blood transfusion because it may have come from a Black person,
so he had his White friends donate blood and used that. Sadly his friends had been injecting steroids (and probably smack, if we're being totally honest) and the pure White man blood used for his transfusion was infected with HIV.
Scarpa contracts HIV, which eventually leads to the full blown AIDS which killed him.
One can only imagine how a group as homophobic and judgemental as the ultra macho, mob connected types who made up Scarpa's usual social circle offered their desperately ill friend moral support and emotional comfort....?
Who would have believed that racism caused AIDS???
Another interesting Scarpa fact.....
Joe Valachi started 'revealing' La Cosa Nostra secrets in 1962.
It shocked and amazed in equal amounts.
The FBI, which had denied the existence of a national crime syndicate up to the 1957 Apalachin Conference demonstrated that a coast to coast organised criminal group certainly did exist, started to learn specific facts from informant Valachi..... Or so we were told.
It later came out that Gregg Scarpa had been enlightening the FBI about all aspects of the American Mafia for THREE YEARS before Valachi said word one!
And Scarpa was higher up and far more informed on higher level facts than the lowly street soldier Joe Valachi.
I'd recommend this book for anyone with an interest in the final phase of the Mafia's Golden Age
but not for those with a naive perception of LCN.
They weren't Robin Hood figures, fighting corrupt authorities and defending the poor and powerless Italian immigrants.
They were psychotic parasites, using intimidation and violence to enrich themselves at the expense of poor immigrants.
If you want more of the Men of Honour fantasy and pseudo-historical fabrications,
read Joe Bonanno's autobiography
or anything by William Balsamo.
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