If there were ever a person who might be able to clue you in on what life in a white-collar—or minimum-security or “country club”—prison was actually like, it was this guy. You know this guy. How many former New York City police commissioners, former overseers of Rikers Island, former consultants for U.S. security in Iraq or former almost-heads of the Department of Homeland Security are there in the world who ended up in the slammer?
Remington Chase and Stefan Martirosian should be on top of the world. In the last two years, they have produced a dozen films, including Lone Survivor, starring Mark Wahlberg as a Navy SEAL fighting for his life in Afghanistan. Two years ago, no one in the industry had heard of them, but now they mingle with A-list stars. By their own estimate they have become the biggest independent financiers in the business, plowing $100 million in cash into production, plus another $200 million in bank loans.
When she was 8 years old, Chaneya Kelly lived in a pale-yellow house on Washington Street in Newburgh, New York. She was the oldest of five kids, with two brothers and two sisters, ages 2 to 7. Some nights, her father, Daryl, would cook dinner, and while Chaneya and her siblings were seated at the kitchen table, they’d see their mother, Charade, bolt toward the front door.
A half-century has passed since Hannah Arendt’s Eichmann in Jerusalem was first published. Yet somehow we can’t escape it. Even today historians of the Final Solution do battle with her misguided thesis that Adolf Eichmann, the cold-blooded engineer of the Nazi killing machine, was himself but a cog in it, a self-deceived simpleton who made evil seem banal.
One night in May of 2012, a Honduran police inspector received a phone call from an agent of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, a man he knew as Tony. Tony told him to get his men ready. They were about to intercept a large cocaine shipment, one of many such missions that U.S. and Honduran forces collaborate on each year.
There were three bombs that October night in Bali: The first exploded near the U.S. Consulate in Denpasar, meant only to signal who was being targeted. The second was strapped to the body of a young Muslim from Java who approached a place called Paddy's Pub in Kuta and walked through the door, went directly to the dance floor, white robes flowing among barely clad tourists, and detonated himself.
If you want to get a sense of Jesse Willms at his absolute peak—the wealth, the lifestyle, the aura of swaggering invincibility—then the weekend of November 12, 2010, is where we want to begin. That Friday afternoon, resplendent in a lustrous violet button-down, Willms packed half a dozen friends into a private plane on a frosty Edmonton, Alberta, tarmac and jetted off to Las Vegas. En route, Willms uncorked a bottle of Dom Pérignon and passed it around so everyone could take a swig.
On a recent Sunday morning at a small target range in rural Frederick, Md., a handful of teenagers are shooting .22 caliber rifles. Inside an adjacent clubhouse, Perrin Lewis, a crane operator and part-time firearms instructor, presents a fact-packed, six-hour lecture about guns, gun safety and gun laws to a dozen men and one woman, each of whom paid $100 for a course that—assuming they pass a federal background check—will entitle them to receive a license to carry a concealed weapon
Malcolm L. Shabazz, the 28-year-old grandson of Malcolm X, crossed the border from California into Tijuana in early May for two reasons. His labor-activist friend, Miguel Suarez, had just been deported from the Bay Area, and Malcolm wanted to offer moral support and eventually get him back to California