For the first twenty-five years of his criminal career, Charles "Lucky" Luciano was a vicious mobster who rose to become the multimillionaire king of the New York underworld. For the next twenty-five years of his life, Luciano was a legend – -but a fake master criminal without real power, his evil reputation manipulated and maintained by the government agents who had put him behind bars.
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Drawing on secret government documents from archives in the United States and Europe, this myth-busting biography tells the real story from Luciano's early days as a top hit man for the Mob to his exploits running sex and narcotics empires. His criminal career abruptly ended with conviction and imprisonment, but his reputation was only enhanced by rumors that he was winning World War II for the Allies in Sicily and the Mediterranean. Now, for the first time, author Tim Newark exposes the truth about what Luciano really did do to help the Allies in the war.
With his expulsion from the United States after the war ended, Luciano returned to Italy. He was reputed to have overseen a massive transatlantic narcotics network and became the arch-villain for international law enforcement agencies. But Newark reveals how Luciano really spent his twilight years.
Lucky Luciano: The Real and the Fake Gangster turns accepted Mafia history on its head with an extraordinary story that has never been told before.