The Big Lufthansa Score details the story of the fabled mob heist of December 1978 at John F. Kennedy International Airport that netted New York gangsters $6 million in cash and jewels.
New York was an open city for the Mafia in the 1970s; the FBI was unwilling and unable to go after big gangsters, and the police were either corrupt or too busy dealing with street crime. JFK International Airport in particular was a mob cash cow as gangs of hijackers and thieves sacked the place with abandon under the protection of Mafia families.
The crew of Jimmy “the Gent” Burke, under the wing of the Lucchese crime family, pulled off the heist with brutal daring. But as police tried to solve the caper, Burke became paranoid and started killing his accomplices. The result was that only a lowly Lufthansa employee was convicted and the loot was never recovered.
The Big Lufthansa Score sets the stage for this sensational crime and goes into the inner workings of the mob, detailing numerous betrayals and murders. It propels the story forward three decades, when the FBI thought it had a break in 2014 with the arrest of Vincent Asaro, a broke, eighty-year-old New York gangster who was betrayed by his cousin Gasper Valenti. The case brought out the hidden history of the heist and the numerous gangsters and Mafia bosses whose involvement had never before been revealed.
In a stunning development, however, Asaro was acquitted after a sensational trial in late 2015, all of which is detailed in The Big Lufthansa Score. For the jury it may have been a case of pity for an old, broke Mafiosi who looked more like grandpa than a killer. Meanwhile, it seems the historic heist is a crime which will forever elude the grasp of the criminal justice system. Download and start listening now!