The indelible headlines linger from newspaper and television accounts: a small time crook from a sleepy east Tennessee town is indicted as one of the biggest cocaine smugglers in government history. The case seems open and shut; only the sentencing is unknown. Or is it?
The sensational facts of the rise and fall are quickly revealed: Jerry Allen LeQuire, former marijuana smuggler, headed a criminal organization out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida that flew copious amounts of cocaine from Medellin, Colombia into the southeast, for which he has earned nearly $400 million; after his arrest, he hires famed lawyer F. Lee Bailey as counsel; reeling under pressure to accept a plea, LeQuire is enraged at hearing one of his employees has agreed to testify against him, and in an act of anger, is accused of ordering the man’s mother killed; then, after accepting a plea which sentences him to 28 years in prison, he allegedly directs the man’s mother to be murdered instead. After two controversial trials, and after destroying his family and friends, the United States government sends LeQuire away for 60 years.
Thirty years later, startling facts, evidence, shed new light on this much-vaunted crime. Is LeQuire as depicted by the media, a hardened drug kingpin who orchestrates murder, or is he something else altogether? Is there a curious underbelly to the events that the government wants to hide? How did the man responsible for getting LeQuire to Colombia just walk out of prison, and why was he then taken to an army base before getting in contact with Jerry?
In-depth interviews with LeQuire reveal the what, why and who of his life. And these interviews, along with intense studies of trial transcripts that include statements by F. Lee Bailey, raises a burning question: was there an orchestrated plot to ensure that LeQuire went to prison and remained there the rest of his life.
Beginning with over a hundred hours of interviews with LeQuire and friends, this book presents an intrigue involving the Central Intelligence Agency and government attorney’s, an ex-wife who is granted full immunity to testify against Jerry, even though she admits to helping arrange a murder, is both a drug addict and convicted drug dealer, and an intelligence agent who works for Jerry for $35,000 a week. When for the second time, LeQuire rejects the CIA’s offer to fly for them---at one time he is offered $20 million a trip to fly heroin from Europe---his cocaine is stolen and a man who resembles him is shot in the back of the head. From this point on, he fears he is doomed. It is a plot straight out of a thriller.
I am including part of the immunity letter provided to Karla Espinal for her questionable testimony against Jerry in their attempt to bury him in prison.
“This letter will confirm in a formal way the agreement that has been reached as a result of certain recent conversations between your attorney----and a representative of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Alabama----
“It is the intention of the United States to grant you use immunity and it is understood that your cooperation will be pursuant to testimonial use immunity. If you fully comply with the terms of the agreement, you will not be prosecuted by this office for other existing charges known to this office, or for potential charges based upon information supplied to this office by yourself.
“In the event that you provide said testimony in this District in an ongoing investigation of the death of Mildred Cornell, and its implications in this District, you will not be prosecuted for your involvement in said homicide.”
In her testimony, the prosecutor accepted known lies by Karla, which were proven to be lies by F. Lee Bailey; yet, the prosecution pushed on with her testimony without hesitation. I’m reasonable certain that much of what she testified was true and accurate, born out by facts, but how do you, as a prosecutor, allow her to knowingly fabricate testimony out of spite and anger? As I’ve said before, it appears to be a game, and winning is the only thing that matters.