of the Day
Clue of the Month
law-enforcement agents of the US Department of the
clues: Feds; Revenuers;
IRS agents; Govt. investigators; Fed. gangbusters; Ness team;
Capone's nemeses; “The Untouchables” extras;
4 times a year
taxmen use Google Maps inventively to find revenue dodgers
Ness: An Untouchable Life
raced through my mind as I considered the feasibility of
enforcing a law which the majority of honest citizens didn't seem
P. Ness (April 19, 1903 – May 16, 1957) was an American
Prohibition agent, famous for his efforts to enforce Prohibition
in Chicago, Illinois as the leader of a legendary team nicknamed
Ness, Treasury Agent 1927-35
In 1926, his sister's
husband, Alexander Jamie, a Bureau of Investigation agent (this
became the FBI in 1935), influenced him to enter law enforcement.
He joined the Treasury Department in 1927, working with the
300-strong Bureau of Prohibition in Chicago.
election of President Herbert Hoover, Andrew Mellon was
specifically charged with bringing down Alphonse Capone. The
federal government approached the problem from two directions:
income tax evasion and the Volstead Act. Ness was chosen to head
the operations under the Volstead Act, targeting the illegal
breweries and supply routes of Capone.
corrupted law-enforcement agents endemic, Ness went through the
records of all the treasury agents to create a reliable team,
initially of fifty, later reduced to fifteen and finally to just
eleven men. Raids against stills and breweries began immediately;
within six months Ness claimed to have seized breweries worth
over one million dollars. The main source of information for the
raids was an extensive wire-tapping operation.
by Capone to bribe Ness's agents was seized on by Ness for
publicity, leading to the media nickname "The Untouchables".
There were a number of assassination attempts on Ness, and one
close friend of his was killed.
The efforts of Ness and
his team had a serious impact on Capone's operations, but it was
the income tax evasion which was the key weapon. In a number of
federal grand jury cases in 1931, Capone was charged with 22
counts of tax evasion and also 5,000 violations of the Volstead
Act. On October 17, 1931, Capone was sentenced to eleven years,
and following a failed appeal, he began his sentence in 1932.
article is licensed under the GNU
Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Eliot