Myron Fuller served in the FBI for 30 years. In this episode of FBI Retired Case File Review with Jerri Williams, Fuller is interviewed about his undercover and case agent roles in the case code-named ABSCAM, which was actually a spin-off of Operation Fountain Pen (OPFOPEN), the largest investigation by the FBI conducted into the activities of white-collar criminals (Jim Wedick is interviewed about OPFOPEN in Episode 6). ABSCAM was originally initiated to investigate and penetrate white-collar crime and organized crime targets in the New York area. Specifically, it was begun as an undercover operation to infiltrate a conspiracy involving members of organize crime attempting to purchase businesses, including a mortgage company, for fraudulent and criminal purposes. The sophisticated ABSCAM scenario featured a fictitious wealthy Lebanese businessman who wanted to funnel millions of dollars from the Middle-East into ventures in the United States. Fuller and his undercover partner, agent John Hauss, represented that they worked for a consortium of foreign banks and had access to a $7 Million bank account. The scenario, with the cooperation of con man Mel Weinberg, allowed for the successful investigation and conviction of organized crime figures, con men, and ultimately, corrupt politicians. Fuller retired as the Special Agent in Charge (SAC) of the Honolulu Division.
Retired agent Joe Pistone served in the FBI for nearly 27 years. However, he is primarily known world-wide for the six years he spent infiltrating one of the New York mafia families as Donnie Brasco, his undercover alter ego. This was a mission so secret only a handful of agents knew what he was doing and where he was as he secretly gathered vital intelligence on the mafia and its criminal ways. The work Joe Pistone did was so incredibly dangerous that it has been documented in numerous books, documentaries, television shows, and the 1997 feature film Donnie Brasco, starring Johnny Depp and Al Pacino. Once the undercover assignment was closed down, Joe spent the remainder of his Bureau career testifying in federal court all around the country for mob related trials and at the FBI Academy helping to establish the FBI’s undercover program and training courses. Joe continues to travel overseas lecturing and training law enforcement officers how to “go undercover.”
Retired agent Geoff Doyle served 20 years with the FBI. He joined the Bureau after 8 and a half years in the military. Early in his career, Geoff worked a variety of assignments in the Richmond and New York Divisions, including SWAT, bank robberies and investigating Italian organized crime. He was later assigned to a squad specifically established to combat the increase in Chinese organized crime. He was eventually promoted to be the supervisor of the squad, which began to focus primarily on investigating the trafficking of heroin and cocaine from South East Asia into the United States. Geoff is interviewed about working as the case agent of Operation Whitemare, the international FBI investigation that resulted in the largest heroin bust and seizure in U.S. history and identified and disrupted major international Chinese drug networks. Post retirement, Geoff owns and operates, Doyle Carden Group LLC, an investigative and anti-money laundering consulting firm.
Former agent Scott Moritz served with the FBI for nearly ten years. During his time in the Bureau, he focused on white-collar crime, domestic and international corruption and money laundering investigations. While assigned to the New York Division, he was on an Asset Forfeiture Squad where he conducted parallel financial investigations alongside agents working organize crime and drug cases. He was responsible for locating the targets’ assets, including real estate, bank accounts, investments and personal property items. Scott is interviewed about an asset forfeiture investigation he worked involving a Long Island waste hauler with ties to New York LCN families. He explains how seized documents revealed the connection between the mob guys, garbage men and illegal asset. Since leaving the FBI, Scott has worked with a variety of organizations, government and regulatory agencies to identify, triage, investigate and remediate a wide variety of risks and complex financial crimes. Currently, he is a global leader for Protiviti Forensic and Managing Director in Protiviti’s New York office.
Retired special agent John Ligato served in the FBI for 20 years. He spent most of his career working organized crime and narcotics investigations. He was also a Bureau pilot for four years. John is interviewed about his eight-year role as a deep undercover agent, wherein he operated strip clubs in Memphis to gather evidence against bikers selling drugs and stolen property and in Cleveland in order to infiltrate the mob. His efforts in Cleveland resulted in one of the Bureau’s largest and most significant public corruption cases involving members of law enforcement.
John recently released a crime novel—Dirty Boys—about a group of former Marines with roles in law enforcement who uncover a terror plot that cannot be defeated by traditional methods.
Retired Special Agent Jesse Coleman served in the FBI for nearly 28 years. He spent most of his career working drug investigations targeting organized crime figures and pursuing high-profile, violent drug gang members. Jesse is interviewed about the two-year period he went undercover as a drug dealer buying cocaine and heroin from made members of the Sicilian mob. During the undercover investigation, he secretly recorded more than 200 conversations between him and the subjects. Jesse’s efforts resulted in the arrest and conviction of 20 members of the mob family operating in the U.S., in addition to the head of the family who lived in Sicily, Italy. Jesse was awarded the Justice Department’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Agent of the Year in 1991 for his undercover role in this investigation.