Chasing Phil: The Adventures of Two Undercover Agents with the World’s Most Charming Con Man by David Howard ePUB
A thrilling true crime caper bursting with colorful characters and awash in 70s glamour, based on the FBI’s first white collar undercover sting.
1977, the Thunderbird Motel. Jim Wedick and Jack Brennan–two fresh-faced, maverick FBI agents–were about to embark on their agency’s first wire-wearing undercover mission. Their target? Charismatic, globe-trotting con man Phil Kitzer, whom some called the world’s greatest swindler. From the Thunderbird, the three men took off to Cleveland, to Miami, to Hawaii, to London–meeting other members of Kitzer’s crime syndicate, known as The Fraternity, at each stop and witnessing the big cons he pulled there. As the young agents became further entangled in Kitzer’s outrageous schemes over the next year, they also grew to respect him–even care for him. And Kitzer began to think of Wedick and Brennan like sons, schooling them in everything from writing bad checks to picking up women.
Kitzer was at the center of dozens of multimillion dollar scams, but the FBI was reluctant to turn its attention away from the anti-communist initiatives left over from J. Edgar Hoover’s tenure. Wedick and Brennan disobeyed direct orders again and again on their yearlong adventure with Phil, but, ultimately, they triumphed and took down The Fraternity. The case resulted in dozens of arrests and forever changed the FBI, ushering in an era of undercover work and a focus on organized and white-collar crime that continues to this day.
The bonds that Kitzer formed with Wedick and Brennan, amazingly, survived his arrest–they convinced Kitzer to work for them after he’d been caught. The relationships between these three form the emotional center of this jet-setting sting. Anchored by big characters, Chasing Phil is high drama and great fun, delivered by an effortless storyteller.