Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Lufthansa Heist Revisited

Burke Starts the Wheels Turning

Shortly after Hill's conversation with Krugman regarding Louis Werner's plan, he got together with Burke. In Wiseguy, Hill describes Burke's feelings toward Krugman:

There was one problem: Jimmy Burke hated Marty Krugman. Jimmy had not trusted Marty since the early 1970s, when Marty was just starting out as a bookmaker and owned For Men Only, a men's hair-styling shop and wig salon next door to The Suite, Henry's Queens Boulevard nightclub. Marty did well enough in the wig business to star in his own late-night television commercial, in which he would be seen swimming vigorously across a pool wearing his wig while an announcer proclaimed that Krugman's wigs always stayed put. [Burke] felt that Krugman was booking out of his store and paying nothing in tribute or protection. Jimmy kept insisting that Henry shake down Marty for at least two hundred dollars a week, but Henry kept trying to placate Jimmy with stories about how Marty wasn't doing well enough yet to be shaken down. The situation was exacerbated by the fact that Jimmy was a part-time insomniac, and when he couldn't sleep he turned on the television. Whenever he saw Marty's wig commercial at four in the morning he felt duped. 'That f*** has the money to go on television,' he would complain to Henry, but no money for anybody else?' Eventually Jimmy had Tommy DeSimone and Danny Rizzo work over one of Marty's employees as a warning, but instead of giving in, Marty threatened to go to the DA.

Hill claimed, "Jimmy never trusted Marty after that, so when I finally got to run the Lufthansa thing down for him I emphasized how much money was involved, and I made sure I put in all the zeros before I said the tip came from Marty Krugman."

Burke sent Robert's Lounge crewmember Joseph Manri to a clandestine appointment to speak with Werner. Manri was the only member of the robbery team Werner would meet. At the meeting Werner revealed his plan, actually Gruenwald's plan minus Gruenwald. Manri, although concealing his excitement from Werner, was impressed with the plan and told Burke, "It's good. It's real good."