D&C reporter Gary Craig introduces new book

22 May

History and mystery buffs will be interested in a book-signing event scheduled for Barnes & Noble this Saturday May 27.

My Democrat and Chronicle colleague Gary Craig has just published a new book, titled Seven Million: A Cop, a Priest, a Soldier for the IRA, and the Still-Unsolved Rochester Brink’s Heist.

Gary has spent several years researching and writing the book, and the result is a fascinating, in-depth exploration of one of the twentieth century’s most notorious unsolved crimes.

Here’s some more information about Seven Million, from Amazon.com:

On a freezing night in January 1993, masked gunmen walked through the laughably lax security at the Rochester Brink’s depot, tied up the guards, and unhurriedly made off with $7.4 million in one of the FBI’s top-five armored car heists in history.

Suspicion quickly fell on a retired Rochester cop working security for Brink’s at the time—as well it might. Officer Tom O’Connor had been previously suspected of everything from robbery to murder to complicity with the IRA. One ex-IRA soldier in particular was indebted to O’Connor for smuggling him and his girlfriend into the United States, and when he was caught in New York City with $2 million in cash from the Brink’s heist, prosecutors were certain they finally had enough to nail O’Connor. But they were wrong.

In Seven Million, reporter Gary Craig meticulously unwinds the long skein of leads, half-truths, false starts, and dead ends, taking us from the grim solitary pens of Northern Ireland’s Long Kesh prison to the illegal poker rooms of Manhattan to the cold lakeshore on the Canadian border where the body parts began washing up.

Seven Million is a fascinating real-life tale of cops and FBI agents, prison snitches, the IRA, and the unfortunate fate of one Ronnie Gibbons, a down-and-out boxer who was in on the early planning of the heist, only to disappear after he came to Rochester to demand his cut.

You can learn more about the case, and meet Gary Craig in person this Saturday when he holds a book-signing from 2 to 3 pm at the Webster Barnes & Noble, Towne Center Plaza. Read more about the event on the Barnes & Noble website and event Facebook page.

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