James Burke (James Burke)

James Burke

Organized Crime Figure. Known as “Jimmy the Gent”, he was immortalized in the Martin Scorcese gangster film “Goodfellas”. He was one of New York City’s most successful and revered organized criminals who went down in the annals of crime as the architect of the notorious 1978 Lufthansa heist, which looted New York’s JFK airport of over $5.8 million in untraceable currency. On December 11th, 1978, just before dawn, a gang of seven men (identified as Angelo Sepe, Joe Manri, “Frenchy” McMahon, Thomas DeSimone, Louis Cafora, Paul LiCastri and Parnell “Stacks” Edwards) carried out a daring robbery at the Lufthansa Air Cargo Terminal at Kennedy Airport in Queens, New York. Their prize was eight million dollars in cash, unmounted jewels of undetermined value, foreign currency and gold. No one was ever convicted for this crime. None of the stolen goods were ever recovered and at least thirteen people connected to the crime were murdered or disappeared, missing presumed dead. Jimmy Burke was convicted of a point-shaving scheme for basketball games in 1981. He was also convicted of murder on February 19, 1985, after an associate of his crew named Henry Hill testified against him and joined the Witness Protection Program. Burke had a 20-to-life sentence tacked on to the original 12 years of the federal sentence he was given on the point-shaving conviction. In 1996 he died of stomach cancer in a Buffalo hospital after being transferred there from the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden, New York.

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Born

  • July, 05, 1931
  • USA
  • New York

Died

  • April, 13, 1996
  • USA
  • New York

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