The Chicago Syndicate: Mr. Untouchable - The Rise, Fall, and Resurection of Heroin's Teflon Don Nicky Barnes

Friday, September 27, 2019

Mr. Untouchable - The Rise, Fall, and Resurection of Heroin's Teflon Don Nicky Barnes

From inside the Federal Witness Protection Program, the "Black Godfather" chronicles the 1970s New York City underworld and the most devastating urban crime wave in history.

1962: Leroy "Nicky Barnes walks out of Green Haven State Prison. There are an estimated 153,000 heroin abusers in the United States.

1977: Two million junkies score $100 million worth of Barnes's smack a year. Sporting flashy suits, riding in a Citro├źn with a Maserati engine and satisfying a wife while pleasuring a harem of mistresses, Barnes presides over a staggering multinational dealership that pushes dope and launders money with the efficiency of a Fortune 500 company. Despite President Nixon's creation of the Drug Enforcement Administration and New York State's adoption of the no tolerance Rockefeller drug laws, Barnes's operation seems impregnable.

How does a small-time hustler and heroin addict end up on the cover of the New York Times Magazine as "Mr. Untouchable", the one gangster the Feds can't touch? And how is the future Mayor of New York City Rudolf Giuliani involved? With Machiavellian pragmatism matched with biblical fury, Barnes lays bare his life's remarkable trajectory--a rise, fall and resurrection defined by brutality, brotherhood and betrayal.


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