Covert: My Years Infiltrating the Mob

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9781402767142: Covert: My Years Infiltrating the Mob
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In a riveting page-turner, NBA referee Bob Delaney reveals the clandestine life he led before becoming one of professional basketball’s most respected officials.

Soon after joining the New Jersey State Troopers in 1973, Delaney was offered a tantalizing undercover assignment: to infiltrate the Mob. And so he became Bobby Covert, the president of Alamo Trucking, a fully-operational business used by law enforcement as flypaper for snagging wise guys. While wearing a wire, Delaney dealt daily with mobsters who modeled themselves after their on-screen counterparts (at  the height of The Godfather’s popularity), and even crossed paths with Joe Pistone, the real-life Donnie Brasco. After three tense years playing a role in which a single slip could cost him his life, Delaney had gathered enough evidence to convict more than 30 members of the Genovese and Bruno crime families. 

Struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder from the strain of his undercover life, Delaney began officiating high school and intramural basketball games as a way to rebuild his life, eventually working his way up to the NBA, where he has been a referee for over two decades. This is his amazing true story.

 

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About the Author:

Bob Delaney has been an NBA referee for the past twenty years. In the 1970's, he was a highly-decorated New Jersey State Trooper who went undercover for nearly three years to infiltrate the Mob, and was the principal undercover operative in the landmark investigation, Project Alpha.

Dave Scheiber is a nationally-recognized and award-winning sports and news features writer at the St. Petersburg Times. His work has appeared in numerous publications and, early in his career, he was a regular contributor to Sports Illustrated, which called him "one of the most talented young sportswriters in America."

From Publishers Weekly:

Starred Review. NBA referee Delaney's fascinating account of his prior life as a New Jersey state trooper who infiltrated organized crime will be a must-read for those drawn to Joe Pistone's similar account in Donnie Brasco (or the movie adaptation starring Johnny Depp). In 1975, Delaney was a relative novice in law enforcement when he was tapped by a superior to help build cases against major Mafia families by creating and running a fake business, Alamo Trucking. With the aid of St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times sportswriter Scheiber, Delaney captures perfectly the daily routine and perils of undercover work, and describes the psychological challenges he faced during the three years of Project Alpha: The granite foundation of my self-image... had given way to shifting sands of doubt and worry. While less heralded than Pistone's work, Delaney's achievements—which yielded multiple convictions of members of the Bruno and Genovese families—were significant precursors to the Feds' massive 1980s assault on La Cosa Nostra. Becoming a basketball referee after these proceedings was a return to an early passion of the high school all-state forward and captain of his college team—but the fear, he says, still comes back sometimes. 8 pages of b&w photos. (Feb. 5)
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9781402754432: Covert: My Years Infiltrating the Mob

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