Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Helen Brach: Gone But Not Forgotten

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Victim
Helen Vorhees Brach, heiress to the Brach candy fortune disappeared in 1977 her body has never been found although she was declared dead in 1984 but indictments and trials stirred up by revelations unearthed in the investigation are still being filed. Though one man is in prison for life for soliciting her murder, authorities are no closer today to answering the question: What happened to Helen Brach?

AP
Helen Vorhees Brach, before her disappearance.

A Brach's Candy advertisement. Helen Brach married Frank Brach, the son of the founder of the Brach candy empire. Under Frank's leadership E.J. Brach and Sons became one of the world's largest candy producers and made the family wealthier than any of them had ever dreamed possible. When he died in 1970, he left Helen an estate worth more than $20 million.

AP
The logo of the Mayo Clinic where the last verifiable sighting of Helen Brach was made before her disappearance.

AP Wide World
Jack Matlick, a long-time major domo for Frank and Helen Brach who stayed on to run the household for Helen after Frank's death. He told investigators that he had picked up Helen from the airport in Chicago after her visit to the Mayo Clinic but no-one recalls seeing her on that flight.

Bailey was a con-artist who specialized in fleecing wealthy older women out of their savings through bad investments in horses.In 1995 he was tried and convicted on charges of conspiring to murder and soliciting the murder of Helen Brach.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven Miller, a tough Chicago lawman who was equally at home with Byzantine white collar frauds and ruthless cold-blooded murder cases. Miller was approached by investigators who wanted the U.S. Attorney to take a look at the Bailey horse-fraud ring.

AP Wide World
Kenneth J. Hansen

AP Wide World
Attorney Burnes at Bailey's indictment.

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