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The dashing trigger-happy Benjamin Siegel, better known as Bugsy, was as charming as he was murderous. In the 1940s the New York mob sent Bugsy to LA where he muscled in on the rackets and hobnobbed with movie stars. Then he fell for the movie girl Virginia Hill. Mobsters s1e5: Bugsy Siegel, Bio 2007
The gamble of a lifetime: he gained control of the Las Vegas resort and casino the Flamingo. ibid.
By age 21 Bugsy was already a success in spite of a rap sheet that included charges of assault, drug dealing, white slavery, bootlegging, hijacking, robbery, bookmaking and murder. ibid.
While Mickey embraced life in LA, Bugsy Siegel was bored with the same old Hollywood scene. In 1945 Bugsy came up with an idea that he pitched to the Mob families – an investment opportunity: the Flamingo hotel. A first-class destination in Las Vegas, Nevada, complete with a hundred and five rooms, private bungalows, and a casino. Siegel told them all they had to do was put up the money to build the place and watch their wallets grow. Mobsters s1e25: Mickey Cohen
By the time Mickey arrived in Las Vegas it was too late. The hotel was already $5 million over budget. Bugsy had promised the Mob a sure thing; the Flamingo was anything but ... The Assassin fired into the house hitting Bugsy three times in the head, killing him instantly. Bugsy Siegel had bet everything on Vegas. And lost. ibid.
The Mobsters pocketed the rest. The desert city had become a cash cow for the outfit. With so much money flowing from Las Vegas casinos the Mob needed muscle to protect its investment. Naturally, the bosses turned to a man who had killed and tortured on behalf of the Mob for years – Tony Spilotro. And the young mobster saw it as a chance to prove himself. Mobsters s1e26: Tony Spilotro
In the wake of the indictments the Nevada Gaming Commission raided The Stardust casino. The move put a serious hole in the Chicago Outfit’s Vegas revenue. ibid.
A home-loving husband, dedicated father, Tony Spilotro was in fact suspected by the FBI of over twenty murders. As Las Vegas enforcer for the Chicago Mafia Spilatro hit whoever his bosses wanted taking care of. Mafia’s Greatest Hits s1e5: Tony the Ant Spilotro, 2012
The Chicago Mafia controlled some of the biggest hotel-casinos in the city. ibid.
And what did the gangstas do with all these millions? They built casino hotels in the Nevada desert – Las Vegas. Mafia’s Greatest Hits s1e9: Allen Dorfman
Joey ‘the Clown’ Lombardo was a serious gangsta ... Lombardo oversaw the Las Vegas casinos. ibid.
We were able to establish with hard evidence that the organised crime families did in fact have these hidden interests in casinos in Las Vegas. That they were receiving skim money. Lee Flosi, FBI special agent
He cheated Las Vegas out of millions. There was no slot machine he couldn’t beat. A brilliant inventor he tinkered his way into the biggest casino heist in history. There was nothing they could do to stop the slot-machine genius. Masterminds s2e4: The Slot Machine Genius, 2008
In 1992 Las Vegas fell victim to one of the biggest gambling thefts in history. An estimated $2.5 million was plundered from slot machines up and down the strip. All by a single gang. ibid.
A TV repair man ... His name was Tommy Glenn Carmichael ... In 1992 armed with light-wands they hit every casino on the Strip. ibid.
Carmichael built a cheating empire. Through his corporation he began marketing his tools and his tips to the criminal underworld. ibid.
Tommy Carmichael was caught in the act. ibid.
He struck Vegas casinos at will. The latest technology was no match for him. A virtually impossible crime scored over fifteen million dollars. Masterminds s2e23: Stealing Las Vegas
Dennis Nikrasch was born the south side of Chicago into a family of career criminals ... Nikrasch moved to Las Vegas in the 1970s. ibid.
Nikrasch himself gets eight years in a Federal prison. ibid.
This informant told them [FBI] about a group of people in Nevada that could win a jackpot any time they wanted to. And she was part of the crew. James Taylor, special agent Nevada Gaming Control Board
At one time a cash pipeline straight to America’s Mafia. Casino: True Story
The most lucrative of them all was The Stardust. ibid.
A way of pocketing their cash without leaving any trace in the accounts – it was known as the Skim. ibid.
In 1971 the Chicago Mob sent in Tony the Ant Spilotro to act as their enforcer. ibid.
As the city’s first organised burglary crew, the gang took full advantage of lax security ... the Hole-in-the-wall Gang. ibid.
In 1979 as part of a major government initiative FBI agents were dispatched to Vegas to drive the Mafia out of the city. ibid.
The Fed’s strategy was to follow the money. ibid.
The FBI offered to drop the charges if Cullotta became a state witness against his boss. ibid.
The Mob had lost its biggest earner and someone had to pay. ibid.
The battle for Las Vegas was over and the Law had won. ibid.
In the shadow of the Strip there is a fierce battleground where the dealers fight for a share of the Vegas drugs trade. Drugs Inc s3e1: High Stakes Vegas, National Geographic 2012
The Mexican cartels have taken over. ibid.
Up to 25% of Vietnam vets have suffered substance abuse problems. ibid.
West Las Vegas is one of the city’s most drug-ridden neighbourhoods. It’s a hotbed for Vegas’ crack cocaine industry. ibid.
Vegas cops arrest around 30 call girls a day. ibid.
There are over 14,000 homeless in Vegas. ibid.
Lucky Luciano, Vito Genovese, Frank Costello, Meyer Lansky – each of Siegel's childhood crew has either been the boss or has had the freedom to run his own operation. Siegel wants to be remembered as more than just a trigger man – he wants a lasting legacy. The Making of the Mafia s1e7, AMC 2015
Siegel’s operation has gone wildly over budget ... Now more than ever he need the Flamingo to succeed. ibid.
Bugsy Siegel’s big gamble on a forgotten desert town finally pays off. ibid.
1947: Siegel becomes the first of Luciano’s original crew to be killed. ibid.
Las Vegas, Nevada: A new breed of gangstas in Sin City … This new generation of gangs is cliquing up all across the city turning what was once quiet neighbourhoods into battlegrounds. Gangland s2e11: Sin City, History 2008
Hybrids – they were something new in gang culture. ibid.
1983: When you love someone you’ve gotta trust them. There’s no other way. You’ve got to give them the key to everything that’s yours. Otherwise what’s the point? Casino 1995 ***** starring Robert De Niro & Sharon Stone & Joe Pesci & James Woods & Frank Vincent & Don Rickles & Pasquale Cajano & John Bloom et al, director Martin Scorsese, opening scene De Niro’s car explodes
Before I ever ran a casino or got myself blown up Ace Rothstein was a hell of a handicapper. ibid. Rothstein’s commentary
I was given one of the biggest casinos in Las Vegas to run – the Tangiers. ibid.
We fucked it all up. It should have been so sweet too. ibid. Nicky’s commentary
The Strip Las Vegas Ten Years Earlier ... Here I’m Mr Rothstein. I’m not only legitimate but running a casino, and that’s like selling people dreams for cash. ibid. Rothstein’s commentary
All this money: this is the end result of all the bright lights ... It’s all been arranged just for us to get your money. That’s the truth about Las Vegas. We’re the only winners. ibid.
The Teamsters Union – and that’s where you have to go if you wanted to borrow money to buy a casino. ibid. Nicky’s commentary