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When you next sit down at your local coffee shop, look around you: there may just be a professional hitman sitting at the next table. As author Mark Shaw reveals in this highly original and informative book, the ‘upper world’ sails perilously close to the underworld.
Hitmen For Hire takes the reader on a journey like no other, navigating a world of hammermen (hitmen), informers, rogue policemen, taxi bosses, gang leaders and crooked businessmen. The book examines a system in which contract killings have become the norm, looking at who arranges hits, where to find a hitman, and even what it is like to be a hitman – or woman.
Since 1994, South Africa has witnessed some spectacular underworld killings associated with various industries and sectors. Drawing on over a thousand cases, from 2000 to 2016, Shaw reveals how these murders have an outsized impact on the evolution of both legal and illegal economic activity.
Just who is Radovan Krejcir? Known as “Baas John” to his underlings, he arrived in South Africa in 2007 under a false passport. He was a fugitive, a powerful Czech multimillionaire, who escaped from prison on fraud charges and fled to the good life in the Seychelles. But a bid by the Czech Republic to have him extradited saw Krejcir coming to South Africa. He was arrested at the airport, but an alleged bribe kept him in the country. Within a few years Krejcir had amassed great wealth and his name began being associated with underworld gang members such as Cyril Beeka and Lolly Jackson. It was the murder of Lolly Jackson that brought Krejcir’s name into the limelight and revealed his dealing with crime intelligence boss Joey Mabasa and small time criminal George Louka.
Over the next three years 10 more deaths took place, each one more dramatic than the next. He was also the victim of a bizarre James Bond style shoot out. His business Moneypoint exploded when a bomb left inside a bag blew up, killing two associates. Soon afterward Krejcir was arrested, but in true Krejcir fashion even a jail cell could not hold him down. Police foiled a plan to murder top cop Colonel Nkosana Ximba and forensic investigator Paul O’Sullivan and to stop numerous escape attempts.
He has been found guilty and sentenced for kidnapping, attempted murder and attempted drug possession. He also faces charges for the murder of Sam Issa, the conspiracy to murder investigators and the murder of Phumlani Ncube, a hit man-turned informant. But Krejcir reveals why we have not heard the last of the worst crime boss South Africa has ever seen.
There are no villains here. Award-winning journalist Paul McNally finds corrupt cops, drug dealers, vigilante residents, addicts, torturers, murderers and cops partnered with drug dealers. But no villains.
Raymond is a shop owner on Ontdekkers Road, in Johannesburg, who takes a baseball bat to the dealers when they break his rules. He systematically records in his notebook the police officers who come – all day, every day – to collect their bribe money from the dealers, and is looking for someone to trust. Khaba is a middle-aged police officer who wants a quiet life but whose demons will not leave him in peace. He is trying to regain his trust in what he once regarded as an honourable profession. Wendy is a petite, ageing police reservist who can handle an R5 rifle with confidence, but not the sadness that accompanies her in her daily life – the loss of her police officer husband, brutally murdered by a drug lord, and the addiction that has her adult son in its grip. She is looking for respect and affirmation and for her own life to have meaning.
Through different paths, the lives of Raymond, Khaba and Wendy intersect on the street as their attention is focused on the current power couple – a drug dealer named Obi and Lerato, a police officer. Seemingly untouchable, Obi and Lerato terrorise Ontdekkers, and in the process upset the balance of this already lawless world.
In The Dirty Game, investigative reporter and BBC Panorama presenter Andrew Jennings, who has been heralded around the world for his decade-long pursuit of this story, uncovers the eye-watering level of fraud and criminal activity at the heart of FIFA, which has been described as the biggest sporting scandal of the century.
From Blatter to Blazer, from bribery to embezzlement, Jennings reveals the key protagonists, crimes and evidence he handed to the FBI which led to the arrests of FIFA executive and the resignation of Sepp Blatter.
Written in a gripping narrative, and based on years of research and never-before-seen documents, this is the definitive portrait of the downfall of FIFA, and the men who stole football.
NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE starring Jessica Chastain, Idris Elba, Kevin Costner and Michael Cera.
Molly Bloom reveals how she built one of the most exclusive, high-stakes underground poker games in the world - an insider's story of excess and danger, glamour and greed. Molly Bloom formed the most elite high-stakes poker game Hollywood had ever seen - she was its mistress, its lion tamer, its agent, and its oxygen. Everyone wanted in, few were invited to the table.
In the late 2000s, Molly Bloom, a twentysomething from Loveland Colorado, ran the highest stakes, most exclusive poker game in existence. Hundreds of millions of dollars were won and lost at her table. Molly's game became the game for those in the know-celebrities, business moguls, and millionaires. Molly staged her games in palatial suites with beautiful views and exquisite amenities. She flew privately, dined at exquisite restaurants, hobnobbed with the heads of Hollywood studios, was courted by handsome leading men, and was privy to the world's most delicious gossip, until it all came crashing down around her and she lost everything.
Molly's Game is a behind the scenes look at Molly's game, the life she created, the life she lost, and what she learned in the process.
This is the story of the world’s biggest unprosecuted fraud. A fraud that in today’s terms amounts to R26 billion.
The cast is stellar: top financial institutions, leading bankers, a world where every other player is a lawyer, a world where Brett Kebble was king. This is a world of outright denial and selective amnesia, of complex financial transactions designed to confuse, obfuscate and hide the spoils. This is a world of dirty dealings across the upper strata of the socio-political system.
Barry Sergeant, hard-hitting, bestselling author of Brett Kebble: The Inside Story, now tackles the murky world of shady financial dealings, post the Kebble murder. A frightening world, where whistle-blowers have to watch their backs. A world where so many major players are involved to such an extent that none of them can afford the cost of the truth. This is a major work that relies on painstaking details and many years of preparation. It is ultimately about unravelling one of the world’s biggest cover-ups.
The Lolly Jackson murder case - a mix of elements that has grabbed the public's imagination. Fast cars, fast money, murder, revenge, missing millions and smashed up Teazers clubs. With kilometres of newspaper headlines and a body count growing by the week, the insatiably curious public is still no closer to the truth. Amidst the confusing reports, money laundering on a grand scale, SARS investigations and the mafia-like killings, Jacana Media brings you the inside story in a book entitled: Lolly Jackson: When fantasy becomes reality. The book opens on the night of Lolly's murder and is a personal, inside track into the reality of Lolly's private and business lives, as never before made public. Intimate and detailed, it provides the reader with a fascinating view of a previously only imagined world.
An account of the illicit drug trade and sex industry which shows how post-apartheid South Africa has been drawn closely into the global market for drugs, while continuing to exhibit its own peculiarities. Included is a discussion of official policy towards vice and suggestions for effective control measures.
Creator of the bestselling The Brick Bible series, author Brendan Powell Smith turns his acclaimed storytelling and illustrative talents to bring to life some of the most shocking, pivotal, and bizarre moments in the history of the United States. From John Wilkes Booth's diabolical plot to kill the president, vice president, and secretary of state in a single night to John Hinckley's deranged bid to impress actress Jodie Foster by shooting Ronald Reagan, Smith brings an eye for meticulous detail and a sense of both gravitas and whimsy toward his subject matter, retelling the fascinating and often tragic stories behind attempts on the lives of a dozen US presidents. Relive the events leading up to John F. Kennedy's fatal ride through Dealey Plaza in Dallas. Rediscover the stories of how Gerald Ford survived two assassination attempts by women just seventeen days apart. Learn how a failed businessman hijacked a plane and planned to crash it into the White House to take vengeance on Richard Nixon for the Watergate scandal. With more than four hundred highly detailed illustrations (including recreations of many famous photographs and historical scenes), Smith has created a book that will captivate even those who wouldn't normally think to pick up a history book. It's history made fun! Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Arcade imprint, are proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in history--books about World War II, the Third Reich, Hitler and his henchmen, the JFK assassination, conspiracies, the American Civil War, the American Revolution, gladiators, Vikings, ancient Rome, medieval times, the old West, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.
When Pablo Escobar, Colombia's "King of Cocaine," was killed, the
world thought--or hoped--the cocaine industry would crumble. But
ten years later the country's production had almost quadrupled, and
since 2001, Colombia has produced more than 60% of all the cocaine
consumed in the world.
Detective Michael Palermo built his career on his unique ability to inhabit two worlds at once: the world of law enforcement and the underworld of New York's crime family organizations. Palermo participated in over two thousand arrests while maintaining close relationships with the kingpins of organized crime--ties that allowed him to stay one step ahead of the rest of the New York City Police Department. This true crime drama takes you inside the police force at its most corrupt and into the dark and dirty world of dons, consiglieres, underbosses, button men, soldiers, and cowboys.
Domestic terrorism. Financial uncertainty. Troops abroad, fighting an unsuccessful and bloody war against guerrilla insurgents. A violent generation gap emerging between a discontented youth and their disapproving, angry elders. This was the early seventies in America, and it was against this backdrop that the kidnapping of nineteen-year-old Patty Hearst by the Symbionese Liberation Front - a rag-tag, cult-like group of political extremists and criminals - stole headlines across the world. Using new research and drawing on the formidable abilities that made The Run of His Life a global bestseller, Jeffrey Toobin uncovers the story of the kidnapping and its aftermath in vivid prose and forensic detail.
Beginning in the summer of 1903, an insidious crime wave filled New York City, and then the entire country, with fear. The children of Italian immigrants were kidnapped, and dozens of innocent victims were gunned down. Bombs tore apart tenement buildings. Judges, senators, Rockefellers, and society matrons were threatened with gruesome deaths. The perpetrators seemed both omnipresent and invisible. Their only calling card: the symbol of a black hand. The crimes whipped up the slavering tabloid press and heated ethnic tensions to the boiling point. Standing between the American public and the Black Hand's lawlessness was Joseph Petrosino. Dubbed the "Italian Sherlock Holmes," he was a famously dogged and ingenious detective, and a master of disguise. As the crimes grew ever more bizarre and the Black Hand's activities spread far beyond New York's borders, Petrosino and the all-Italian police squad he assembled raced to capture members of the secret criminal society before the country's anti-immigrant tremors exploded into catastrophe. Petrosino's quest to root out the source of the Black Hand's power would take him all the way to Sicily-but at a terrible cost. Unfolding a story rich with resonance in our own era, The Black Hand is fast-paced narrative history at its very best.
"Queen of Thieves" is the gritty, fast-paced story of Fredericka
"Marm" Mandelbaum, a poor Jewish woman who rose to the top of her
profession in organized crime during the Gilded Age in New York
City. During her more than twenty-five-year reign as the country's
top receiver of stolen goods, she accumulated great wealth and
power inconceivable for women engaged in business, legitimate or
otherwise. The "New York Times" called Mandelbaum "the nucleus and
center of the whole organization of crime in New York City."
Since the late 1940s, a violent African criminal society known as the Marashea has operated in and around South Africa's gold mining areas. With thousands of members involved in drug smuggling, extortion, and kidnapping, the Marashea was more influential in the day-to-day lives of many black South Africans under apartheid than were agents of the state. These gangs remain active in South Africa. In We are fighting the world - a history of the Marashea Gangs in South Africa, 1947-1999, Gary Kynoch points to the combination of coercive force and administrative weakness that characterized the apartheid state. As long as crime and violence were contained within black townships and did not threaten adjacent white areas, township residents were largely left to fend for themselves. The Marashea's ability to prosper during the apartheid era and its involvement in political conflict led directly to the violent crime epidemic that today plagues South Africa. Highly readable and solidly researched, We are fighting the World is critical to an understanding of South African society, past and present. This pioneering study challenges previous social history research on resistance, ethnicity, urban spaces, and gender in South Africa. Kynoch's interviews with many current and former gang members give We Are Fighting the World an energy and a realism that is unparalleled in any other published work on gang violence in southern Africa.
KILLING GOLDFINGER charts the extraordinary rise and spectacular bullet-riddled fall of John Palmer, the richest, most powerful criminal ever to have emerged from the modern British underworld. During the late 1990s, Palmer was rated as rich as The Queen by the Sunday Times Rich List.Palmer earned his nickname Goldfinger after smelting (in his back garden) tens of millions of pounds worth of stolen gold bullion from the 20th century's most lucrative heist; the Brink's-Mat robbery. Palmer then used his share of the millions to become the vicious overlord of a vast illegal timeshare property empire in Tenerife. At the same time, Goldfinger financed huge international drugs shipments as well as some of the most notorious UK robberies of the past 30 years, including the GBP50m Securitas heist in Kent in 2006 and, many believe, the Hatton Garden heist in 2015.Palmer vowed to hunt down all his underworld enemies. But in the end it was those same criminals who decided to bring his life to an end. Murdered in June 2015, with charges of fraud, money laundering and worse pending, this book tells his murky story for the first time.As outrageous and bullet-riddled as the hit Netflix series Narcos, Killing Goldfinger tells the true story of Britain's underworld kingpin, who turned the sunshine holiday island of Tenerife into his very own Crime Incorporated and then paid the ultimate price.
What drug lords learned from big businessHow does a budding cartel boss succeed (and survive) in the 300 billion illegal drug business? By learning from the best, of course. From creating brand value to fine-tuning customer service, the folks running cartels have been attentive students of the strategy and tactics used by corporations such as Walmart, McDonald's, and Coca-Cola. And what can government learn to combat this scourge? By analyzing the cartels as companies, law enforcers might better understand how they work,and stop throwing away 100 billion a year in a futile effort to win the war" against this global, highly organized business. Your intrepid guide to the most exotic and brutal industry on earth is Tom Wainwright. Picking his way through Andean cocaine fields, Central American prisons, Colorado pot shops, and the online drug dens of the Dark Web, Wainwright provides a fresh, innovative look into the drug trade and its 250 million customers. The cast of characters includes Bin Laden," the Bolivian coca guide Old Lin," the Salvadoran gang leader Starboy," the millionaire New Zealand pill maker and a cozy Mexican grandmother who cooks blueberry pancakes while plotting murder. Along with presidents, cops, and teenage hitmen, they explain such matters as the business purpose for head-to-toe tattoos, how gangs decide whether to compete or collude, and why cartels care a surprising amount about corporate social responsibility.More than just an investigation of how drug cartels do business, Narconomics is also a blueprint for how to defeat them.
The classic, bestselling account of the infamous Kray twins, now a major film, starring Tom Hardy.Reggie and Ronnie Kray ruled London's gangland during the 60s with a ruthlessness and viciousness that shocks even now. Building an empire of organised crime that has never been matched, the brothers swindled, extorted and terrorised - while enjoying a glittering celebrity status at the heart of the swinging 60s scene, until their downfall and imprisonment for life.
The Japanese Yakuza. The Chinese Triads. The Sicilian Cosa Nostra. The Calabrian N'Drangheta. The New York Mafia. The Russian Vory -v -Vakone. Today, mafias operate across the globe, with hundreds of thousands of members and billions of pounds in revenue. From Hong Kong to New York, these vast organisations spread their tentacles into politics, finance and everyday life. But what is it like to belong to the Mafia? How do you join? What does it do to your loved ones? How do you make it to the top? And what happens if you break the rules? Criminologist Federico Varese draws on a lifetime's research to give us access to some of the world's most secretive societies. Mixing reportage with case studies and historical insights, this is the story of mafia as it really is: filled with boredom and drama, death and disaster, ambition and betrayal. Infiltrating initiation ceremonies from Russia to England, visiting exclusive gambling clubs in Macau and Mafia summits in Dubai luxury hotels, Varese builds up a unique picture of life in the mafia from the inside.
Fighting the Mafia is Leoluca Orlando's dramatic tale of witness and survival, of his effort to expose Mafia infiltration of the highest levels of Italy's national politics, and of the movement he helped build-in the schools and churches, and at the ballot box-to recapture Sicilian culture and inspire a renaissance of democracy.
The expansion of organized crime across national borders has become a key security concern for the international community. In this theoretically and empirically vibrant portrait of a global phenomenon, Jana Arsovska examines some of the most widespread myths about the so-called Albanian Mafia. Based on more than a decade of research, including interviews with victims, offenders, and law enforcement across ten countries, as well as court files and confidential intelligence reports, Decoding Albanian Organized Crime presents a comprehensive overview of the causes, codes of conduct, activities, migration, and structure of Albanian organized crime groups in the Balkans, Western Europe, and the United States. Paying particular attention to the dynamic relationships among culture, politics, and organized crime, the book develops a framework for understanding the global growth of the criminal underworld and provides a model for future comparative research.
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