Vermeer's The Concert

Vermeer's The Concert

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Stolen Art Watch, George Burke Will Announce "The Gardner Museum Eagle Has Landed" & Claims The $100,000 Reward Without Revealing His Client/Source

George Burke, far left
Gardner Museum Eagle, Above, Has Landed At George Burke's Office

George Burke, the Ex-Norfolk County D.A. and now Defence Lawyer, is being used unwittingly as a proxy to return the Gardner Museum Eagle and to collect the $100,000 reward.

When he announced a couple of days ago to the press he has a longstanding client who has information on the mystery man seen in newly released CCTV images from the night before the Gardner art Heist, George Burke was putting into play a strategy whereby a bone is thrown to investigators, who might be able to go arrest Richard Abath and the Florida based accused, opening the way for George Burke to then, shortly, announce that he has been given the Gardner Museum Eagle to hand back and he will claim the $100,000 reward offered by the Gardner Museum without naming his client or source.

This will be done by way of getting media to attend his office whereby George Burke will allow himself to be filmed with the Gardner Museum  Eagle as he calls up either Anthony Amore, Gardner Museum security director, or the FBI or the Boston D.A. Carman Ortiz to tell them he has the Gardner museum Eagle and for them to come over to collect it.

This will be followed by the media filming the actual handing over of the Gardner Museum Eagle to authorities and then George Burke will hope for the $100,000 reward to be paid Swiftly.

This scheme has been conjured up by the client of George Burke and the naming of the Florida man as the person of interest seen in the CCTV images recently released of the Gardner museum the night before the Gardner heist was done to try and link Richard Abath to this man so the Feds can arrest Richard Abath and the Florida man, thereby creating a smokescreen and a sweetener for when George Burke announces he has been given the Gardner Museum Eagle.

Plan B is George Burke is told where the Gardner Museum Eagle can be found, which will be in a Catholic Church Confession Box, so George Burke can attend with authorities to recover the Gardner museum Eagle and claim the $100,000 reward.

I must stress George Burke has done nothing wrong and will do nothing wrong, but given his history in recovering the stolen Rembrandt back in 1975 from Myles Connor he was chosen as a right man for this scheme.
Furthermore, George Burke may not even be aware of this plan until it unfolds shortly.

Speaking of the Rembrandt stolen back in 1975, it was stolen by a then sixteen year old William Youngworth on the instructions of his then mentor Myles Connor, who then used the Rembrandt as a get out jail free card when he handed it back to George Burke, who was the Norfolk County D.A. at the time.
So, if all goes to script, expect to see the Gardner museum Eagle handed back by George Burke shortly.
Then in the words of George Burke, "It has a sense of coming full circle."

U.S. Says Mobster Lied, Claiming Ignorance Of Museum Heist

Federal authorities investigating the baffling theft of $500 million in art from Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum disclosed in court Wednesday that they had "terminated" a cooperation agreement with aging Hartford gangster Robert Gentile because they believe that Gentile was lying when he testified to a federal grand jury that he knows nothing about the heist.
The disclosure at U.S. District Court in Connecticut reveals nothing about where the irreplaceable art might have ended up, but helps explain why Gardner investigators have focused their efforts of the past five years on the 79-year old Gentile. Assistant U.S. Attorney John Durham revealed new information about Gentile's grand jury appearance and alleged admissions to an informant in a legal motion filed Wednesday to rebut Gentile's claim that FBI agents had illegally entrapped him in a gun case to pressure him to cooperate on the Gardner heist.

Durham wrote that, in April of 2010, the FBI "tasked" a mob informant "to go see Gentile and engage him in general conversation." The informant was instructed to "pay particular attention to anything Gentile might say about the Gardner Museum theft, but not to initiate any conversation on that topic."
The informant later reported to the FBI that Gentile claimed that one of his former Mafia associates in Boston, Robert Guarente, "had masterminded the whole thing," and had "flipped" before he died of cancer in 2004, according to the court filing.
There is no explanation in the court filing of what Gentile meant by "flipped," a term often used to describe decisions by criminals to admit crimes in hope of leniency from authorities.
Gentile also told the informant, according to Durham's legal filing, that the FBI had offered him immunity from prosecution and a $5 million reward if he could help recover the missing art. And, finally, the informant reported to the FBI that when he asked Gentile whether he had the paintings, Gentile "just smiled."
"Thus, investigators concluded that the defendant had perjured himself before the grand jury in Boston in December 2010 and terminated his 'cooperation' in the early part of 2011," Durham wrote.
Although the new court filing illustrates law enforcement's interest in Gentile, it does nothing to explain the contradictions between suggestions that Gentile has knowledge of the stolen art and his consistent denials to grand jurors and others.
Guarente, a bank robber and drug dealer from Boston, had been a friend and associate of Gentile's for decades. The two men took an oath of allegiance to the mob and were inducted together into the Boston faction of a Philadelphia-based Mafia family in the 1990s, according to multiple sources, including other gangsters and prosecution statements in court.

Guarente was a widely known figure in the New England underworld with a wide network of contacts. A leading theory shared by Gardner investigators is that Guarente had knowledge of the theft and might have had possession of the stolen art.
People with knowledge of the investigation have said that, in March 2010 — a month before the FBI directed its informant to talk to Gentile — Guarente's widow told the FBI and the museum's security director that she saw her husband hand Gentile two of the stolen Gardner paintings outside a restaurant in Portland, Maine, sometime between 2002 and Guarente's death in 2004.
After the assertion by Guarente's widow and at about the time that Gentile allegedly was talking to the FBI informant, he asked federal investigators for an opportunity to submit to a polygraph, or lie detector, examination, in an effort to convince them of the truth of his claims that he has no knowledge of the 1990 heist or the fate of the stolen art.

In the court filing Wednesday, Durham listed the three relevant questions that Gentile was asked and his responses.
"The results of the polygraph establish without question that the defendant was not being truthful in his answers to any of the relevant questions, a fact made known to the defendant and his counsel at the time the tests were run," Durham wrote.

"Indeed, the probability of his answers being truthful was calculated at <0 .1="" a="" and="" answers="" at="" being="" calculated="" comparison="" deceptive="" for="" his="" of="" probability="" purposes="" scoring="" second="" system="" the="" utilizing="" was="">99%."

Gentile was asked the following questions, and gave the following answers, according to the new prosecution filing:
A. Did you know those paintings would be stolen before it happened?
Answer: No.
B. Did you ever have any of those stolen paintings in your possession?
Answer: No.
C. Do you know the current location of any of those paintings?
Answer: No.

The disclosures in court Wednesday are the second ones in the Gardner case in recent days. Last week, the FBI released a video that appears to show a security guard allowing a suspicious, unidentified man into the museum the night before two men disguised as police officers bluffed their way in to the museum and stole the art.
In repeated interviews with The Courant, Gentile denied having any knowledge of or involvement in the Gardner heist.
He admitted that he and Guarente became longtime friends after meeting through the used car business in the 1980s. But he denies being a member of the Mafia. He claims that his association with criminals in Boston was limited to running their card games and cooking for the players. His interest in food, Gentile claims, is the reason for his nickname: Bobby the Cook.
Gentile is now being held at a federal jail outside Providence while awaiting trial on a charge that he sold a gun and ammunition to a convicted, three-time murderer. In an effort to have the case dismissed, he has accused the FBI and federal prosecutors of "outrageous" misconduct, claiming that they effectively engineered a crime and entrapped him so that they could force his cooperation in the Gardner investigation.
Durham was dismissive of the misconduct claim by Gentile's Hartford attorney, A. Ryan McGuigan.
Developing a criminal case against a defendant to induce cooperation in another case is a technique that "is hardly a novel one or which shocks the judicial conscience," Durham wrote.
"There is no evidence relating to the controlled purchase of a firearm and ammunition from defendant that suggests the defendant was anything other than a predisposed, eager, ready-to-make-a-buck purveyor of the firearm," Durham wrote.
Gentile and the government agree that there was an attempt at cooperation beginning in 2010, but it fell apart early the following year. In 2012, the FBI charged Gentile with selling drugs, and he was convicted and sentenced to 30 months. Agents began building the gun case Gentile now faces almost immediately upon his release from prison.
Gentile said the FBI told him he would die in prison if he didn't help locate the paintings. Some of the most important art ever created disappeared about 1:30 a.m. on March 18, 1990, as St. Patrick's Day celebrations wound down around Boston. The museum is a century-old, Italianate mansion that was full of uninsured art and protected by an outdated security system

Mobster Suspected In Museum Theft Case Pleads Not Guilty To Gun Charges
Mobster Suspected In Museum Theft Case Pleads Not Guilty To Gun Charges

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Stolen Art Watch, Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) Or Luigi Giovanni Manocchio (born 1927) Named by Ex-Norfolk County D.A. George Burke's Informant As Gardner Museum Visitor Caught On CCTV Night Before Gardner Art Heist

Art Hostage has learnt that ex-Norfolk County DA George Burke was contacted over the last weekend by an informant who says the mystery man in the surveillance tape released last week was none other than Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) and the informant provided a Boca Raton Florida address for Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962). Mind you, Luigi Giovanni Manocchio fits the bill as well according to other sources.

This is all old news as Art Hostage posted on here about  Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) nearly two and a half years ago and explained how the Gardner art could be recovered, subject to Uncle Joe Ligambi's approval, if only Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) were offered total immunity and the reward.

That said, Art Hostage wonders if  Luigi Giovanni Manocchio (born 1927) known as "Louie", "The Professor", "The Old Man" and "Baby Shacks" could shed some light on the Gardner case as his name has been floated about recently?

Art Hostage also stated that the Gardner art should be left in a Catholic Church confession box and has been calling for that method of recovery for nearly two decades. So, it matters not who decides to leave the Gardner art in a confession box, Joey Merlino or Luigi Giovanni Manocchio, or Uncle Joe Ligambi, just the recovery of the Gardner art is paramount as it seems like the Feds are being thrust into the spotlight and will take down whomever prevents the Gardner art being recovered.
Time has come whereby the Gardner art has become a millstone around the neck of  Underworld figures and time to hand it back and take the heat off themselves.

The Feds have had Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) under close scrutiny since his release from jail back in 2011. They tried, in vain, to pressure Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) by having him arrested for being in the company of a known Wise-guy at a restaurant and Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) was held in jail on a parole violation until a judge released him this last April 2015.
So, it is as explained by Art Hostage why Bobby Gentile has stayed quiet and not offered co-operation and why the Gardner art is still un-recovered. Same with Gardner Museum security guard Richard Abath, terrified to reveal anything for fear of what may happen?
However, the final decision rests with Uncle Joe Ligambi to reach out and act as the peacemaker, as Art Hostage has stated before.

BREAKING NEWS — Mobster Skinny Joey Merlino Released From Federal Custody . . . Returns to Maitre D’ Gig in Boca Raton

Joey Merlino
Skinny Joey Merlino and a fan on the beach in Boca Raton (Gangsters Inc. photo)
flag-breaking-newsBOCA RATON — Former Philadelphia organized crime boss “Skinny Joey” Merlino returned to his gig as maitre d’ in a Boca Raton eatery over the weekend, just hours after he was sprung from his federal half-way house.
Merlino, 53, who spent most of his adult life in federal custody and on probation, was let go when an appeals court order his release.
He left federal custody Friday, three weeks before his four-month sentence for violation of probation was supposed to end.
Gossip Extra exclusively reported last year that Merlino, who looked like he was trying to live a normal suburban in Boca Raton, was tailed by Broward County Sheriff’s deputies to a meeting with fellow Mafia don John “Johnny Chang” Ciancaglini at a Boca cigar bar.
At the time, Merlino was strictly prohibited from associating with known crime figures because he was finishing up his probation on the racketeering conviction that cost him 14 years hard time.
Merlino claimed he was not properly notified of the violation, and the appeals court agreed and ordered him gone.
Merlino moved to a $400,000-condo in Boca Raton when his racketeering sentence ended almost three years ago.
Investors opened Merlino’s earlier this year in downtown Boca and offered Skinny Joey a salaried job as maitre d’. Merlino claims the recipes for the joint’s Philly-style Italian food came from his mother.

Please read this post by Art Hostage from March 2013 offering a solution, swinging on a star:

Followed by this posted May 2014:

Joseph Salvatore "Skinny Joey" Merlino (born March 16, 1962) would organise the return of the Gardner art via a Catholic church confession box, once Uncle Joe Ligambi agrees, if the reward offer was made collectable and immunity was solid. Same goes for Luigi Giovanni Manocchio, reward guarenteed, immunity secured, Gardner art recovered.
Art Hostage has been calling for the Gardner art to be left in a Catholic Church cofession box for nearly two decades as a compromise.

THE ART OF THE HEIST – How A Group of Boston Wise-Guys Pulled Of The Biggest Rare-Art Theft In World History & Never Got Caught
Part I: Beginner’s Luck 

Bobby D probably did the job. It was the biggest art heist in history, a half-billion dollar score. Boston Bobby might have moved the very valuable paintings to Philly. Bobby Boost could have had some, too, and transported them to Connecticut and then off to Maine. Bobby the Cook is said to have taken at least one piece, maybe more, from Bobby Boost in Maine and returned it to Connecticut. The rest of the lucrative haul lay somewhere in hiding, cultural treasures, seminal artifacts from bygone eras in time, buried like dead bodies. Like Bobby D.
The mob had bullied their way into the art game. They proved fast-learners.
In the early-hours of St. Patrick’s Day 1990, about 1:30 in the morning on March 18 to be exact, two armed robbers dressed as police officers talked their way into the Isabella Gardner Museum. The Isabella Gardner is a small, but very elite, privately-funded precious-art museum in downtown Boston, Massachusetts, located near the famous Fenway Park.
Pulling their weapons and tying up the museum’s security guards in the building’s basement, the two men had free access to the place for the next hour and a half, coming away with more than a dozen paintings and drawings that are estimated to be worth a staggering $500,000,000 – confirmed as the largest art-robbery ever, the thieves scored original Rembrandts, Degas, a Manet and a Vermeer, worth tens of millions each.
And if either of them had even the slightest idea of the waters they were wading in, any remote clue of the inner-workings that was the cloak-and-dagger world of fine art theft, they would have come away with a lot more. They succeeded in spite of themselves.
To this day, 25 years later, the case remains cold, not a single person arrested, not a single piece of artwork retrieved. Just this past spring, the Boston FBI publically stated that the investigation was open, very active and that several sightings of the missing art had been recently authenticated. One of the suspects was recently sent to prison on an unrelated conviction.
Although no charges have ever been filed (the statute of limitations has expired), the FBI believes it has a pretty good idea of what happened and who did it – according to an interview with lead federal investigator Geoff Kelly in May, the heist was planned and carried out by members and associates of the New England mafia aka the Patriarca Family and the stash of looted masterpieces shuffled between Boston, Connecticut, Maine and Pennsylvania by representatives of both the Patriarcas and the Philadelphia mob. Where they exactly reside today is unknown and remains one of the most fascinating and vexing unsolved crimes in American history
One retired federal agent that worked the case in the 1990s and early 2000s agreed to speak to about his knowledge of the legendary crime.
“The whole thing began with Bobby Donati, they called him “Bobby D,” he was a lifelong wiseguy who belonged to the North End crew,” the former ‘G’ Man said.
Coming up in the mafia under the Angiulo brothers (New England mob underboss Jerry Angiulo and his four sibling lieutenants), when the Isabella Gardner robbery occurred in 1990, Bobby D belonged to a Patriarca regime ran by then-capo Vincent (Vinnie the Animal) Ferrara, a growing power in Family circles at that time and the man that took over the Angiulo’s North End neighborhood operations upon their imprisonment in the 1980s. Donati was known as an accomplished cat burglar and all-around hard-core gangster and hit man, running with a rugged bunch of Beantown burglars, hoods and mobsters (including his brother “Dickie D” Donati) that were unafraid to get their hands dirty and had those hands in multiple gangland rackets across New England.
The FBI believes that Donati got a tip in the years leading up to the heist about the lax security at the museum from an indebted gambler to one of the sports books that he ran on behalf of Ferrara.
“Some degenerate bettor that owed Donati money traded info he had on the museum for a pass on his gambling debt,” the retired agent said. “The guy had the skinny on the joint because he used to work there as a maintenance man and knew what little security they had going on at the place.”
The one problem was that although Bobby D had stolen and fenced a lot of things in his life, he had never stolen artwork and knew nothing about the complicated black market associated with moving such exclusive and rare hot merchandise. So according to what the FBI has been told by informants, Donati brought in an expert. That expert was Myles Connor, a Bostonian considered the No. 1 art thief in the United States by the federal government at his peak in the 1970s and 80s.
Today, Connor, 71, is retired. Sort of – he’s stopped pulling big scores, at least, switching to petty crime. Two years ago he took a pinch for robbing a woman of her cell phone in Rhode Island. He’s authored a book and currently lectures about his life in the Eastcoast underworld and time as a gallivanting pilferer of artistic masterpieces throughout the latter-part of the 20th Century.
Back then, however, in the late-1980s, Connor was as active as ever and heavily intrigued by Donati’s tip and the mother-load of priceless riches that lied within the confines of the Isabella Gardner.
The two of them planned to take it down. Connor has admitted to the FBI that he and Donati cased the museum in the summer of 1989.
But Connor was locked up in January 1990 on series of racketeering and art-theft charges, sentenced to serve the next 20 years in prison, leaving Donati all by himself on the job.
Bobby D got antsy. He wasn’t intending on waiting another two decades for Connors to get out of prison before acting on the tip.
Enter David Houghton.
Donati and Houghton, a hulking gangland strong-arm and street-tax collector, hung out together at TRC Auto Electric, a car repair shop in working-class Dorchester, Massachusetts, just outside Boston’s city limits, owned by Patriarca Mafioso Carmelo (The Auto Man) Merlino.
“The Auto Man, Carmelo Merlino, told Donati he had a buyer for the score overseas, they got the okay to pull it and the rest is history,” the former Fed says.
The take could have been much larger. The thieves, believed by most authorities to have been Donati and Houghton, both had untrained eyes and bypassed several, even more valuable pieces in the museum.
“Those two didn’t know a Rembrandt from a root beer bottle,” the one-time mob-buster said of the pair. “They were in over their heads on the whole thing.”
FBI records from the early-1990s reveal intelligence coming in from informants on the street pointed to Ferrara and East Boston mob chief and Patriarca street boss and consigliere Joseph (J.R.) Russo as giving the go-ahead for the job to Donati through Merlino.
However, things fell apart quickly. Merlino’s buyer fell through and literally a week after the epic heist Ferrara and Russo, along with 19 others, were swept up in a giant federal racketeering case that sent both of them to prison (Russo would die while incarcerated, Ferrara has been out for a decade and reportedly has gone legit and surrendered any and all of his interests in the mob).
The artwork was placed into storage in Revere, Massachusetts until Donati, Houghton and Merlino could line-up another prospective buyer, according to Massachusetts State Police documents. Revere is a suburb of Boston and known for years to be where many of the Patriarca mob brood held and currently hold residence.
With the indictment and incarceration of Ferrara and Russo, Bobby D and his two accomplices had more pressing concerns to worry about than selling the boosted art. The Patriarca syndicate, which had recently seen tensions calm after a spattering of violence the year before (Boss-candidate Francis (Cadillac Frank) Salemme survived an assassination attempt and underboss William (The Wild Man) Grasso was killed by the Ferrara-Russo faction of the Family on the same day in June 1989) was back at war. Cadillac Frank Salemme took the reins in Boston from his rival, the departing Russo, and took aim at those he considered responsible for the botched hit on him and were still on the street following the March 1990 bust.
One of the people he turned his attention to was Bobby Donati, 50 years old and tabbed by some as a frontline soldier in the early-stages of the dispute repping Ferrara, someone he sometimes acted as a driver for and escorted around town to the city’s most posh restaurants and clubs in Vinnie the Animal’s heyday as a big shot in the Beantown underworld.
The rare art Donati had access to, his share of whatever was sold, was simply an added bonus, per the former FBI agent.
“Bobby D was in the crosshairs the second Vinnie and J.R. were put away,” he said. “Frank Salemme knew about the Gardner Museum stash, but he would have been killed anyway. Salemme wanted to get rid of anyone he saw as overly loyal to Vinnie Ferrara. Donati fell into that category.”
On September 24, 1991, Donati’s badly-beaten body was found hogtied in the trunk of his car. Massachusetts State Police reports indicate that certain groups in the state’s law enforcement community believed Bobby D’s murder was carried out by East Boston mafia henchman Mark Rossetti, a future New England mob capo who would be outed as a Confidential Informant for the FBI.
“Informant B3467MSPOCU tells Officer redacted name that Rossetti slit Donati’s throat,” it said in one particular MSP file.
Rossetti’s uncle, Boston wiseguy Robert (Bobby Boost) Guarente, was about to get in on the action.
Guarante and two more Bobbys and New England Goodfellas, Robert (Boston Bobby) Luisi, Jr. and Robert (Bobby the Cook) Gentile entered the picture after Donati was murdered and his accomplice, David Houghton, died of cancer a year later in 1992. Merlino needed help moving the artwork on the black market (something he also had zero experience in, since he had no criminal history in the art-heist racket, just as Donati and Houghton didn’t) and according to federal authorities, “The other three Bobbys” would try to help him.
They would find limited success in their endeavors.
Part II; The Three Bobbys
The piping-hot paintings were up for grabs.
It was 1993. In less than three years, the whole back-end of the Isabella Gardner robbery had gone to shambles and wasn’t even close to completed.
The men that pulled off the most infamous and lucrative art heist in history, Boston mobsters Robert (Bobby D) Donati and David Houghton, were both dead, their $500 million dollar score – 13 original paintings and drawings spawned from the hands of Rembrandt, Dega, Manet and Vermeer and stolen from the Isabella Gardner Museum in March 1990 – stashed away, in storage, hidden somewhere in the greater Beantown area.
Two of the paintings alone could be worth over $100 million a pop: Rembrandt’s only seaside work, entitled, “Storm on the Sea of Galilee,” and Vermeer’s “The Concert,” an oil-canvassed masterpiece by the 17th Century Dutch painter and considered the crown-jewel of the notorious theft.
According to Massachusetts State Police records, after Donati and Houghton died, the art haul landed in the sole possession of Carmello (The Auto Man) Merlino, a Boston Mafioso alleged to have conspired with Donati and Houghton to pull off the robbery in the first place. However, Merlino, who ran a series of racketeering operations out of his Dorchester, Massachusetts car-repair business, TRC Auto Electric, had neither, the expertise needed nor the access to the pockets of the black market geared towards historic treasures, to move the art.
Prior to the robbery Merlino thought he had lined up a fence in Europe set to sell it to collectors in France and possibly representatives of the IRA in England, per the MSP files. Neither came to fruition.
The FBI knew via informants early on that Merlino was most likely involved and were watching him with intense scrutiny throughout the entire decade of the 1990s. In 1997, they inserted two agents undercover into Merlino’s crew, coming away with nothing but some innuendo and boasts by Merlino of having access to the hidden score, however nothing concrete to link anybody to.
The most promising intelligence the FBI attained was revealed in an inter-agency memo with the Massachusetts State Police and the Boston Police Department.
“Agent REDACTED was told that MERLINO was given approval by his superiors in the NEW ENGLAND LCN to move pieces of the Isabella Gardner score. MERLINO is alleged to have been passed word of the okay by NEW ENGLAND LCN Consigliere CHARLES (Q-BALL) QUINTINA.”
Throughout the course of the undercover work, the FBI found out of Merlino’s plan to rob an armored car depot and arrested him and two accomplices in February 1999 en route to pulling the job. Questioned about his knowledge of the Isabella Gardner heist, Merlino refused to answer any questions. He would die in prison.
Merlino’s right-hand man was Robert (Bobby Boost) Guarente, a lifelong crook and Boston Mafioso with a lengthy rap-sheet. His first bust was back in 1958 for forging checks. A decade later, he was nabbed for heading a bank-robbery ring and earned his nickname for knocking over some three dozen banks or armored-trucks in his career in the New England underworld.
Bobby Boost was a well-liked wiseguy and often used as a go-between for various east coast mob factions during the 1980s and 90s. His best friend and gangland running buddy was Robert (Bobby the Cook) Gentile, a like-minded gangster and thief that was frequently seen in Guarente’s company. The pair were known to have pulled numerous scores together.
Gentile’s arrest-record dated back to the late-1950s just like his pal Bobby Boost, and included collars for aggravated assault, robbery, receipt of stolen property, bookmaking and counterfeiting. For his legitimate income, Bobby the Cook was in the concrete-pouring business and his company was quite well-regarded for its quality work. His skills in the kitchen were quite well-regarded as well, gaining him his nickname.
Around 1997, Guarente and Gentile went to work for Robert (Boston Bobby) Luisi, Jr., a recently-named capo in the Philadelphia mafia operating in New England. Mainly, they acted as bodyguards and cocaine distributors on his behalf. Boston Bobby lost his father and brother to a November 1995 mob slaying in a Charlestown restaurant, two of the final victims of the long-ranging conflict that engulfed the Patriarca syndicate throughout the late-1980s and into the early-to-mid 1990s.
Luisi, Jr. met some members of the Philly mob in prison and defected for the offer of being made into La Cosa Nostra, something he failed to do while serving under the Patriarca regime. Initiated into the mafia by Philadelphia LCN boss Joseph (Skinny Joey) Merlino (no relation to Carmen), Boston Bobby was immediately promoted to captain status and allowed to put a crew together to run in Massachusetts. The “Three Bobbys,” Bobby Luisi, Jr., Bobby Guarente and Bobby Gentile were all inducted into the mafia in the same ceremony.
“Those three were mob vagabonds that anchored their ship to whatever or whoever suited their individual interests the best,” said a retired FBI agent of the threesome of New England goombahs. “Frankly, they were second-rate wiseguys and their involvement in this whole thing demonstrates how desperate things got with trying to move this artwork, to just find any kind of money to show for their efforts.”
According to FBI and Massachusetts State Police records, Luisi, Jr. was given paintings from the Isabella Gardner robbery via Guarente, who in turn had got them from Carmello Merlino (no relation to Skinny Joey), and took them to Philadelphia, possibly selling them to an art collector in suburban Bucks County.
Skinny Joey’s Boston mob crew was short-lived and ill-conceived. Luisi, Jr. was busted in a drug-distribution conspiracy and turned over on Guarente, Gentile and Skinny Joey himself.They all went to prison and the paintings remained unearthed.
When Bobby Boost Guarente got out from behind bars in 2000, he retired to Maine. The FBI believes he brought the Isabella Gardner artwork with him.
In March 2002, Gentile drove from Boston to Portland, Maine to meet Guarante for dinner. It was immediately after finishing their meal at a fancy seafood restaurant on the water that authorities think Bobby Boost passed two of the stolen paintings to Bobby the Cook Gentile in the eatery’s parking lot.
So says Guarente’s widow, Elene. She came forward in early 2010, some half-dozen years following her husband’s death as a result of cancer, and told investigators that Guarente had a stash of the paintings in their cabin in the woods in Maine and removed at least two of them prior to leaving for their 2002 rendezvous, which he handed over to Gentile after they ate but before they parted ways.
Gentile, 77, denies Elene Guarente’s allegations or ever possessing the ripped-off art. However, the case for that argument took a blow in a 2012 federal raid of his Manchester, Connecticut home, where the FBI discovered amongst an arsenal of weapons and a large cache of prescription painkillers that he had no prescription for, a hand-written list of each of the stolen pieces of Isabella Gardner artwork accompanied with their estimated black-market values. Further hurting his cause is the fact that Gentile reportedly failed an FBI-administered lie-detector test.
Facing narcotics and gun charges, Bobby the Cook stayed true to the code of the streets and refused to spill the beans. Instead, he took the fall and last year he was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison. Gentile was under constant surveillance by the FBI in Connecticut during the 2000s, as his Clean County Used Cars lot was a local Hartford mob hangout.
The paintings remain missing.
The Isabella Gardner Museum displays blank frames in the places on its walls where the 13 stolen pieces once hung. It’s going on 25 years and every single frame is still empty.
“Besides the Jimmy Hoffa disappearance, I think not solving the Gardner heist sticks in the Bureau’s crow more than any other case ,” the former FBI agent said. “And these weren’t super thieves, Thomas Crown-types. They were knockaround guys that fell into the score of a lifetime  by sheer blind luck and didn’t know what the fuck to do with it. Now in the end, everyone’s deprived. The people that got the art aint selling it, or if they did sell some of it, they got a pittance of what they stole. So they aren’t coming out ahead. And then in terms of culture and history, everyone, the whole god damn world, is deprived of appreciating that brilliant artwork because it’s sitting in hiding in someone’s basement, not on display in a museum or where people can view it. Nobody won in this thing, everybody got screwed.”
To this very day, the Isabella Gardner leaves the frames where the artwork once hung from the museum walls empty.

Thursday, August 06, 2015

Stolen Art Watch, Gardner Museum Releases Art Heist Dry Run Video

Latest Gardner Art Heist News:

Will William Youngworth be arrested, will Myles Connor be bought in for questioning, Gardner Art Heist Rollercoaster, the plot thickens !! 

Allegedly, William Youngworth Had Antiques Business Nearby Where Gardner Museum Security Guard Richard Abath Lived !!

Art Hostage has learnt that William Youngworth has been put in the frame for having access to the Eagle which a reward was offered for earlier this year. The $100,000 reward has been made in an attempt to get William Youngworth to reveal the whereabouts of the Eagle.
The alleged back story is one of Robert (Bobby) Donati, whom Myles Connor alleged to be one of the Gardner art heist thieves, perhaps the driver who was outside the Gardner Museum in the car, stole the Ku bronze vase and Eagle as a gift for Myles Connor knowing of his interest in things Oriental and interest in history?
Whilst Miles Connor was in Jail it is also alleged William Youngworth was tasked to hold all of the art collection of Miles Connor, including any Gardner artworks, which William Youngworth duly did.
Myles Connors
Furthermore, it is alleged William Youngworth sold most of the Myles Connor art collection, not the alleged Gardner artworks, whilst Myles Connors was in jail and this led to falling out between William Youngworth and Myles Connor.
Therefore, back in the late 1990's when William Youngworth stepped forward and offered to recover some of the Gardner art he had access to some Gardner art, the bronze vase, Eagle and possibly some lesser valued artworks such as the Degas drawings?  William Youngworth has always maintained he could recover some of the Gardner art if he was offered full immunity and had public guarantees of the reward being paid.
Perhaps this could be the latest attempt to offer up some Gardner artworks and claim the reward as well as try to hide behind the offer of immunity?
A friend of William Youngworths has been trying to act as a broker to get the Eagle back this year and things are allegedly ongoing .
It will be interesting to see if indeed any Gardner artworks, Eagle, Ku bronze vase, Degas drawings, as lesser valued Gardner artworks, are recovered and how the FBI, Prosecutors and Museum respond? 

Allegedly, William Youngworth Had Antiques Business Nearby Where Gardner Museum Security Guard Richard Abath Lived At The Time Of Gardner Art Heist 1990 !!

Art Hostage was told a long time ago that Richard Abath, the security guard on duty the night of the Gardner art Heist has been under close scrutiny by the FBI for a long time and has had his every movement monitored in a similar vain to that of Robert Gentile.
The FBI was also instrumental in getting the reward offer for the Eagle of $100,000 publicly released earlier this year in the hope Richard Abath would seek out to claim the reward via a proxy.
The FBI has also tried to put in undercover proxies to try and smoke out Richard Abath in a similar vain to Robert Gentile.
It is alleged that the Gardner museum was robbed twice on that fateful night, first by Richard Abath and his friends, or Richard Abath stole the Eagle etc and put them outside the museum in a rubbish sack, before the two thieves dressed as Police turned up. The Eagle, bronze Ku vase, as well as possibly several drawings and maybe the Monet were taken by the friends of Richard Abath and the hope was to blame the actual thieves who later arrived with their theft.
After all these years FBI have been using all their resources to try and trap Richard Abath and there is a possibility Richard Abath may face arrest shortly?
Richard Abath has thwarted all attempts thus far to bite, but maybe, just maybe we will hear of breaking news shortly.
There was a rumour that the Eagle had been recovered but that goes along with the rumour that one or more of the drawings had been recovered years ago.

Federal authorities have released new evidence in the notorious burglary of Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum ­— footage of an unauthorised person entering the museum through the same doors as the thieves, but 24 hours before the $500 million in paintings were stolen.
Investigators hope that, even 25 years later, the public can help them identify the person or the automobile seen in the video that night, and they are offering a $5 million reward for information leading directly to the recovery of all of the missing artworks.
The low-resolution surveillance video shows a vehicle pull up to the museum’s rear entrance and an unidentified man walking out of the automobile and being let into the museum by a security guard. Federal investigators say the automobile matches the general description of the vehicle seen moments before the theft on March 18, 1990.
“Over many months we have engaged in an exhaustive re-examination of the original evidence in this case. Our aim has been to ensure that all avenues have been explored in the continuing quest to recover these artworks,” U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz said in a statement.
The footage was captured at 12:49 p.m. on March 17, 1990, almost exactly 24 hours before the thieves entered the museum through the same door.
“Today we are releasing video images from the night before the theft — images which have not previously been seen by the public — with the hope of identifying an unauthorised visitor to the museum,” Ortiz said. “With the public’s help, we may be able to develop new information that could lead to the recovery of these invaluable works of art.”
Two white men dressed as Boston police officers walked into the museum, handcuffed the security guards, and pilfered 13 paintings worth an estimated $500 million by names like Vermeer, Rembrandt, Degas and Manet. While the thieves took with them the security tapes from that night, they did not steal the tapes from the previous night, which investigators hope could break open the case.
No one has been charged in connection with the theft, and none of the paintings have been found. In 2013, the FBI said members of an East Coast crime organisation orchestrated the daring theft and then tried selling a share of their $500 million haul in Philadelphia a decade ago but they refused to divulge names.
Prosecutors have long suspected Robert Gentile, an ageing reputed Connecticut mobster, has information on the heist. Prosecutors revealed in a court hearing on unrelated weapons charges earlier this year that Gentile was caught on surveillance discussing the whereabouts of two of the stolen paintings with an undercover FBI agent and how much he could get for them. Gentile has repeatedly denied knowing anything about the heist.

Portland may play role in solving mystery of 1990 Boston art heist

The FBI suspects that a mobster transferred some of the 13 stolen paintings from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum to an associate outside a local seafood restaurant in 2003.
BOSTON — Although more than 100 miles away from where the masterpieces were stolen, FBI investigators believe that Portland plays a central role in solving the 25-year mystery of what remains the largest art heist in world history: the theft of artwork from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.
Specifically, investigators are interested in what took place at a Portland seafood restaurant where Robert F. Guarente and Robert V. Gentile, two aging criminal associates who had long been friends, sat down with their wives in 2003 to enjoy lunch.
During their chit-chat, Guarente, who’d been freed from federal prison on a cocaine trafficking conviction the year before, told the Gentiles that he was dying of cancer and he was living his last days at his home in the central Maine town of Madison.
Years later, Gentile (who couldn’t recall the restaurant’s name) and Guarente’s widow agreed that she had ordered twin lobsters for lunch, but they had contradictory accounts on what had taken place after they had finished their meals. Elene Guarente told FBI agents in 2010 that the two men went into the restaurant’s parking lots and her husband opened the trunk of their car and handed over two or three paintings to Gentile.
Although she was fuzzy on some details, Elene Guarente said she believed the paintings were among the 13 pieces of art stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in 1990 and that they had long been held by her late husband at their home in Madison.
Although FBI agents have worked tirelessly chasing down hundreds of leads in the 25 years since the paintings were stolen, what Elene Guarente told them had taken place at the Portland restaurant remains the best tip investigator say they’ve received.
Elene Guarente, who still lives in Maine, was unsure why her husband had given Gentile the paintings – perhaps for safekeeping by Gentile or to turn over to another criminal associate. But she told the agents – and later a federal grand jury – that Gentile had placed the paintings in the trunk of his car and driven off with his wife back to their home outside Hartford.
Federal agents soon found reason to be heartened by what Elene Guarente had told them. When confronted with her account, Gentile acknowledged that he had in the past conversed with her husband about the Gardner theft and the two had schemed on how they might assist in getting back the stolen artwork and securing the $5 million reward that the museum offered for their recovery.
Later, the agents found, in the basement of Gentile’s home, a handwritten note on a sheet of typewriter paper that set out what each of the stolen pieces might bring on the black market.
Gentile insisted that it all amounted to empty talk between two old criminal associates and he never had gotten any paintings from Guarente after their lunch at the Portland restaurant. Nor did he know or believe that his old pal, Guarente, had the stolen Gardner paintings. The authorities, however, continue to believe Elene Guarente’s account and treat her version of the events at the Portland restaurant as the biggest break in the case.
But their efforts to gain a confession from Gentile have failed, though they charged him with involvement in criminal activity in 2012 and again this March. He is now on trial on charges he violated the terms of parole by meeting with other mobsters as well as selling a loaded pistol to a former convict.
Now 79, Gentile told a federal judge at a recent hearing that he believes he will die in prison because he is incapable of complying with federal prosecutors’ demands that he turn over the paintings stolen in 1990.

The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Art Heist And The Connecticut

In 1990, two men dressed as police officers walked into the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, overwhelmed two security guards, and walked out with 13 valuable pieces of art, including masterpieces by Rembrandt and Vermeer.
For 25 years the FBI, the Boston Police, and many journalists have interviewed suspects and investigated tips in hopes of solving the case. The museum has offered a $5 million reward for the return of all the stolen pieces.
But the art works are still missing. And no one has ever been arrested in the case.
The heist remains the largest art theft in U.S. history. The works stolen are valued at $500 million.
Stephen Kurkjian has investigating the Gardner Museum theft for about 18 years. He started working on the case as a journalist for the Boston Globe. He’s just published a book called Master Thieves. The book examines the people potentially connected with the heist and the FBI’s theory of what happened. Kurkjian says the FBI believes a criminal network that runs from Boston to Maine and even to Hartford is responsible for the theft.
Thieves took "Storm on the Sea of Galilee,” by Rembrandt, which once hung on the wall in the left background and "The Concert," by Vermeer, which once occupied the frame in the right foreground. The empty frames remain on display at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.
Thieves took "Storm on the Sea of Galilee,” by Rembrandt, which once hung on the wall in the left background and "The Concert," by Vermeer, which once occupied the frame in the right foreground. The empty frames remain on display at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.
Credit (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds, File)
Your book highlights a broad cast of characters and includes a complicated network of low and high level criminals as well as two rival crime families.
I think that's at the center of the of this perplexing mystery. There were two gangs in the Boston area that knew of the vulnerability of the museum back as far as the late 70s and early 80s. These two gangs went at each other in a war because the control of the Boston underworld had become open with the death of Raymond Patriarca who was the gangland "uberboss" of all of New England. So that opened it up to two gangs, one overseen by a gang leader named Frank Salemme and another one overseen by newer, younger, much more aggressive men that sprung out of the North End of Boston. The FBI looks to the Salemme gang. In my research, I was able to make inroads into the second gang, and there I got the "eureka" moment in which I found out who in that gang knew of the museum's vulnerability and why they had the motive to break in.
You say finding a motive for the robbery really narrows down the field of suspects. Isn't that something that investigators should figure out fairly soon in the investigation?
You would think. But I think it was because the FBI got so overwhelmed with tips and information that came, for the most part if not solely, from fraudsters and con men seeking to get money out of the museum. They had to chase down everyone of these leads. I was told by the FBI lead agent in the case in 2010 that they had yet to have a confirmed proof of life sighting of any of the 13 pieces. And what that means is they have never gotten a photograph of any of the pieces, or a forensic piece of evidence of any of the pieces. That told me that the FBI was working very diligently, but they got a center where they felt the were right on it. So frustrating, but I think it's at the core as to why this case has never been solved.
Law enforcement agents search the yard at the home of reputed Connecticut mobster Robert Gentile in Manchester, Connecticut, Thursday, May 10, 2012.
Law enforcement agents search the yard at the home of reputed Connecticut mobster Robert Gentile in Manchester, Connecticut, Thursday, May 10, 2012.
Credit (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)
There's some reason to believe that some or all of the art work was hidden for a time in Manchester, Connecticut.
Bobby Gentile is an aging mob associate. The FBI believed he was involved because of the testimony of the widow of his best friend who said that before her husband had passed away in 2004 he had given two or three of the paintings to Bobby Gentile. And Bobby Gentile had hidden them in his home somewhere in the shed in his backyard in Connecticut. When the FBI first approached Bobby Gentile in 2010 he agreed to cooperate, but that stopped in 2012. And then in 2014 the feds sent an undercover agent, an old pal of Bobby Gentile They talked about a crime that the old pal wanted Bobby to get involved in. Bobby fell into the trap. He said, "if you let me into this scheme you've got planned I'll sell you two of the paintings for half a million dollars." In my heart of hearts I don't think Bobby can get us back the paintings, but the feds are not convinced of that.

Convicted leader of New Jersey crime family who inspired Tony Soprano has died aged 90, marking 'the end of a mobster generation'

  • John M Riggi ran the DeCavalcante crime family for two decades
  • Ordered murders from behind bars, made labor racketeering 'an art form'
  • He was the inspiration for James Gandolfini's ruthless character
  • But detectives say he was a beloved figure, unlike fictional Tony Soprano
The convicted leader of a New Jersey crime family who inspired The Sopranos TV show has died.
John M Riggi, 90, ran the DeCavalcante crime family for more than two decades - even ordering murders and receiving payments while in prison for extortion and murder.
Under his ruthless rule, the gang developed labor racketeering into an art form, crime experts say. 
But unlike the character Tony Soprano, played by the late James Gandolfini, he was also a beloved member of the community. 
Archetypal mobster: John M Riggi took the helm of the DeCavalcante crime family in 1988 and 'turned labor racketeering into an art form'. He ordered murders from behind bars but was beloved in the community
Archetypal mobster: John M Riggi took the helm of the DeCavalcante crime family in 1988 and 'turned labor racketeering into an art form'. He ordered murders from behind bars but was beloved in the community
Inspired: Riggi was supposedly the inspiration for James Gandolfini's character Tony Soprano in the hit show
Inspired: Riggi was supposedly the inspiration for James Gandolfini's character Tony Soprano in the hit show
Robert Boccino, former deputy chief of the State Organised Crime Bureau, told 'He wasn't Tony Soprano. Absolutely he was no Tony Soprano. The people in Elizabeth loved him. Nobody would co-operate – that was the problem. He was respected.'
And the effect he had on other prisoners was astounding, Boccino said as he reminisced about arresting Riggi in the 1980s. 
'All the others we took in that morning put on the arrest suit – sweats and sneakers. But when we brought him into the holding cell and he walked in, they all stood up. He was an impressive guy.'
Riggi's death, according to retired detectives, marks the end of a generation.
He died on Monday at his home in Edison, Corsentino Home for Funerals said. A cause of death wasn't disclosed.
Officially, he was the longtime business agent for Local 394 of the Laborers International Union of North America.
Tweaks: Unlike Tony Soprano (right), Riggi was supposedly a 'charitable' and 'popular' man between murders
Tweaks: Unlike Tony Soprano (right), Riggi was supposedly a 'charitable' and 'popular' man between murders
But behinds the scenes, he was one of the East Coast's most notorious and feared mobsters. 
He was acting chief from about the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s. From the moment he took the helm in 1988, Riggi's family wielded its power over labor unions.
Officials also noted that he was known for supporting community groups and charities.
In September 2003, Riggi admitted his role in the 1989 murder of a Staten Island businessman that prosecutors said was supposedly carried out as a favor to John Gotti, the former head of the Gambino crime family. 
They said evidence at prior trials showed Riggi believed the slaying would improve the Decavalcante's position among mob families.
Sopranos creator David Chase has said he drew inspiration for the HBO show partly from crime families including the DeCavalcantes.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

Stolen Art Watch, Gardner Art Heist/Whitey Bulger/John Connolly August 2015

Mobster Tied To Boston Art Heist Assails FBI Tactics

Hartford mobster tied to notorious art heist calls FBI tactics "outrageous government misconduct."
The Hartford mobster who the FBI believes might be the last, best hope of recovering half a billion dollars in art stolen from Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum says the tactics that authorities are using to force his cooperation amount to "outrageous government misconduct."
Robert "Bobby the Cook" Gentile, who the FBI believes once had two of the stolen paintings and might be able to help unravel the continuing mystery of the missing art, complains in a new court filing that the FBI has twice used informants to induce him to commit crimes only so that agents and prosecutors could use threats of imprisonment to persuade him to talk about the stolen art.

Gentile, who is 79 and in jail, has said repeatedly that he can't tell the authorities anything about the notorious1990 Gardner heist and the missing art, even if he would like to, because he never had any of the stolen art and knows nothing about the robbery or what happened to the missing masterworks.
Gentile attorney A. Ryan McGuigan of Hartford argues in a long-shot attempt to win dismissal of charges related to Gentile's alleged sale of a gun to one of the informants that the FBI is abusing its formidable law enforcement power by contriving crimes solely to advance the investigation of an unrelated crime.
"In the instant case, the Government was not conducting a firearms sting investigation," McGuigan wrote in the motion. "It was not concerned with taking the armorer of the underworld in Connecticut out of commission. As the Government made clear immediately after taking Mr. Gentile into custody by its offer of cooperation in the Gardner Museum investigation, the alleged gun transaction at issue was pretextual."
The U.S. Attorney's office declined to respond.
What is not in Gentile's motion to dismiss is an explanation of why, over the past five years, Gentile has twice taken the bait offered by FBI informants and allegedly committed crimes.

In 2012, he was charged and convicted after he said that a persistent FBI informant persuaded him to illegally sell prescription painkillers. Earlier this year, in the case he is trying to dismiss, Gentile was charged with selling a pistol and ammunition to another informant, an old friend convicted in the killings of three people during a 50-pound marijuana robbery in the 1980s.
McGuigan said Gentile was told that he could avoid prison in both the drug and gun cases if he cooperated with museum investigators. But Gentile has said he has nothing to offer, even after being promised immunity and a chance at collecting the $5 million reward that the museum is offering for return of the art.

Multiple witnesses located by the FBI over decades of investigation have cast doubt on Gentile's claims. They have said that Gentile had possession of at least two paintings or that he implied that he had access to them.
An expert on the Gardner heist, perhaps the world's most baffling art who-done-it, speculates that Gentile either has some knowledge of the robbery or is the "unluckiest man alive."
The most important of the witnesses implicating Gentile is the widow of a Boston mobster who Gentile acknowledges was a friend and associate from the 1980s until the mobster's death in 2004. The widow told Gardner investigators early in 2010 that she was present when her husband handed two of the stolen paintings to Gentile outside a Portland, Maine, hotel between 2002 and 2004.

Gentile, in repeated interviews, said he met the mobster and his wife for lunch or dinner at Portland restaurants several times, but denies being given paintings. Gentile said the widow is "a liar," who implicated him because she was broke in 2010 and trying to get the $5 million reward.
Gentile and his attorney contend that he has been the subject of continual FBI surveillance since his friend's widow put him at the center of the Gardner case. Authorities have said that Gentile is a sworn member of a Boston Mafia crew. Gentile denies that charge, too, saying that he simply cooked and ran card games for gangsters. He said that's how he got his nickname.
Gentile said the FBI told him he would die in prison as a result of the 2012 drug arrest if he didn't help locate the paintings. Instead, he was released after serving 30 months. He faces a far longer sentence if he is convicted of selling a gun and ammunition as a convicted felon to another convicted felon.
Some of the most important art ever created disappeared about 1:30 a.m. on March 18, 1990, as St. Patrick's Day celebrations wound down around Boston. Two men dressed as police officers bluffed their way into the museum, a century-old, Italianate mansion that was full of uninsured art and protected by an outdated security system
Among the missing art: a Vermeer, a Manet and five drawings by Degas. Two of the paintings — "Storm on the Sea of Galilee," Rembrandt's only known seascape, and Vermeer's "The Concert" — could be worth substantially more than $100 million.

$10 Billion Worth Of Stolen / Lost Art Discovered In Mexican Drug Lords House

Eduardo Almanza Morales is a Mexican drug lord of Los Zetas. In March 2009, Almanza Morales was listed as one of Mexico’s top 5 most wanted drug lords. He had been linked to the introduction of illegal drugs into Mexico from Belize and Guatemala on behalf of the Gulf Cartel. Some sources have reported that Eduardo Almanza Morales was killed by Mexican law enforcement during a shootout in December 2009. However, as of 3 March 2013, he was still listed as wanted
Details have been made public today, stating that Morales was captured in Mexico. He was discovered as part of a 2 year joint operation between the DEA and Mexican Fedarales. Morales was found living in a huge mountain side villa, tucked away in the Mexican countryside.
The fact that this drug lord has been arrested is not what is making the news though. What officials found inside his villa have shocked the world. Morales had gathered the most expensive collection of art in history. Whats even more amazing is that ALL of this art and treasures had been stolen.
Officials are amazed that Morales went to all the effort to buy this priceless art collection, only for it to be confiscated by the DEA.
The art world has gone into meltdown with this news, the much awaited press conference will display some works of art that have been missing for over 50 years.
The collection has been valued at around 10 billion dollars. To put that into perspective, the value of the art work discovered could pay for healthcare for every man, woman and child in America for the next 12 years.
Here is a list of some of the more expensive paintings that where discovered :
Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I by Gustav Klimt : Value = $135,000,000
Portrait of a Young Man by Raphael : Value = $130,000,000
The Concert by Johannes Vermeer : Value = $120,000,000
“Charing Cross Bridge, London” (1901) by Claude Monet : Value = $120,000,000
Landscape with an Obelisk by Govert Flinck : Value = $115,000,000
“Waterloo Bridge, London” (1901) by Claude Monet : Value = $115,000,000
The Storm on the Sea of Galilee by Rembrandt van Rijn : Value = $110,000,000
Poppy Flowers by Vincent van Gogh : Value = $55,000,000
Also discovered :
View of the Sea at Scheveningen by Vincent van Gogh : Value = $30,000,000
Congregation Leaving the Reformed Church in Nuenen by Vincent van Gogh : Value = $30,000,000
View of Auvers-sur-Oise by Paul Czanne : Value = $20,000,000
Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence by Caravaggio : Value = $20,000,000
Le pigeon aux petits pois by Pablo Picasso : Value = $20,000,000
The Just Judges by Jan van Eyck : Value = $20,000,000
In addition to the priceless art works, officials discovered gold and diamonds with a total weight that exceeded 1 metric ton (1000 kilograms). Including crowns, statues made of gold, diamonds as big as apples and a gold plated swimming pool.
70 Million dollars worth of diamonds in this small box.
This crown was stolen from the Vatican in 1974 and is estimated to be worth over $160,000,000 due to its religious significance.
There was even a life sized solid gold statue of Kate Moss…
Morales also had a collection of some of the rarest animals in the world.
The Tibetan Mastiff is one of the most costly dogs that you can take home as a pet. The average price of this particular breed runs to about $582,000. Morales had a pack of 15 Tibetan Mastiff’s, its rumored that he would feed his enemies to the dogs.
White lions come from an extremely rare lion breed and cost between $100,000-$300,000 each. Morales had over 20 different types of “Big Cat” – Also rumored to be a favored way to dispose of the bodies of his enemies.
His bird sanctury housed some of the worlds rarest species. Including Toucan’s, Hyacinth Macaw’s, Palm Cockatoo’s. He even had an albino Golden Eagle which is said to be worth millions.
Oh yeah, they also found over 2 billion dollars in US banknotes.
All that paid for by drug money from American heroin addicts.

Court upholds conviction of ex-FBI agent tied to gangster 'Whitey' Bulger

A Florida appeals court on Wednesday reinstated the 2008 murder conviction of Boston mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger's longtime FBI handler for providing information the gangster used to carry out a 1982 hit.The state's full Third District Court of Appeals reversed its own decision of a year ago, which had found that the former agent, John Connolly, had been wrongly convicted and sentenced to 40 years in prison for his role in the murder of John Callahan, the president of sports betting operation World Jai-Alai.
Bulger's notorious Winter Hill gang had targeted Callahan for death because it wanted to take over the highly profitable operation.
In a 6-4 ruling, the full appeals court found that a three-judge panel had erred last year when it overturned Connolly's conviction for second-degree murder for providing information that Bulger's gang used to carry out Callahan's killing.
The decision hinged on whether a lower court acted properly in allowing a gun charge to be attached to the murder charge, which extended the statue of limitations. The appeals court on Wednesday upheld the lower court's decision.
"Because the reclassification of the defendant's conviction for second-degree murder was based on his personal possession of a firearm during the acts he committed during the commission of the murder ... the reclassification of the second-degree murder was not fundamental error," the majority wrote in its opinion.
Bulger was convicted of crimes including 11 murders he committed or ordered in the 1970s and '80s, including Callahan's. His 2013 trial revealed his corrupt relationship with federal law enforcement officials including Connolly, who turned a blind eye to the Irish-American gangster's crimes in exchange for information they could use against the Italian-American Mafia, then a top FBI target.
Lawyers for Bulger, who is serving two consecutive life terms in prison, argued in federal appeals court on Monday that his conviction should be overturned because he was not given a chance to testify. The judge had blocked Bulger from testifying that he had been granted immunity by a now-dead Justice Department official.
Connolly, a veteran FBI agent who retired in 1990 and has proclaimed his innocence, recruited Bulger as a mob informant. Bulger has denied serving as an informant, insisting that he paid agents for tips but provided none of his own.