The bomb appeared early one morning in an upstairs office of Harvey s Wagon Wheel Casino near Lake Tahoe, an enigmatic box covered in a bewildering array of switches A neatly typed letter explained that the box contained 1,000 pounds of dynamite It was the largest improvised explosive device in American history and its creator promised to explain how to remove it safely The bomb appeared early one morning in an upstairs office of Harvey s Wagon Wheel Casino near Lake Tahoe, an enigmatic box covered in a bewildering array of switches A neatly typed letter explained that the box contained 1,000 pounds of dynamite It was the largest improvised explosive device in American history and its creator promised to explain how to remove it safely if the casino delivered 3 million by helicopter to a remote landing site in the mountains Do not try to move, disarm, or enter the bomb, the letter warned It will explode The bomb maker was one Janos Big John Birges, a Hungarian political refugee who had worked his way up from nothing to become a successful entrepreneur in Fresno, California only to see his life unraveled in middle age by divorce, cancer, and gambling debts By 1980, he owed hundreds of thousands of dollars to Harvey s And he had roped his two teenage sons who were as eager to please their father as they were terrified of him into a plot to get the money back But the bomb he planted in the casino that August wasn t just an extortion scheme It was a brilliant feat of engineering an intricate and deadly puzzle that Birges hoped would prove once and for all just how badly the world had underestimated him In A Thousand Pounds of Dynamite, Adam Higginbotham draws from interviews with federal agents and Birges s co conspirators as well as never before released FBI records to tel
A Thousand Pounds of Dynamite Kindle Single The bomb appeared early one morning in an upstairs office of Harvey s Wagon Wheel Casino near Lake Tahoe an enigmatic box covered in a bewildering array of switches A neatly typed letter explained th
This is a story that I wasn t aware of It s interesting that this man was able to pull off the nearly perfect crime A fast read but very interesting.
An 82 page account of a memorable extortion case from 1980, originally from ATAVIST, a digital only publication devoted to longform narrative journalism I commend the author for not stretching this out to a full length book.
A Fantastic Account of One of The Largest Bombings In The U.S The events in this story were reconstructed using documents from the criminal investigation and court proceedings, interviews, news reports, etc FBI special agent Dell Rowley is dressed in black fatigues, Kevlar vest, and helmet He s squatting behind the pilot s seat of a Bell Ranger helicopter In the co pilot s seat are three canvas money bags, containing cut and bound newsprint to match the weight of 3 million This was hopefu A Fant [...]
This is a fascinating true story of a Hungarian refugee who tries to blow up the Harvey s Wagon Wheel Casino in South Lake Tahoe in the early 80 s Big John Birges convinces his two sons to help him with the extortion through bombing plot This is being made into a movie by Bradley Cooper I would cast John Goodman as Big John and Sam Rockwell as one of the sons The FBI said that this bomb was the most complex bomb ever made in American history This is from a kIndle Single.This often less than This [...]
Amazing true story that makes Ocean s Eleven seem plausible Early 80s Fresno, CA a gambler and clearly disturbed individual tries extorting a casino in Tahoe by planting a bomb that cannot be disarmed and threatening to blow up the casino unless he gets three million dollars Read the rest hard to believe I found this book through Atavist which is a great source of interesting reading.
The guy was stupid, crazy, smart Great read about a lunatic that tried to blow up a Casino in the 80 s Highly recommend