Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Bad Intent: Volume One
Five Volumes: Michael Tabman
Distractions should not come into play when you are on a mission to catch drug dealers and thieves. As one FBI-NYPD Task Force Agent named Bob needed to remember. As his partner Detective Mark Zucarelli, observed him and wondered what exactly he was doing, he needed to refocus on the mission at hand. Being on surveillance requires patience, stamina and self-control to jump the “gun”. Contemplating the rationale behind catching these dealers, you hear Bob’s voice creating doubt as to why they even bother or if anyone cares. But, drugs are bad and selling to high school or even junior high school kids is often the norm in many communities and needs to be stopped. As the discussion continues you can even hear both Mark and Bob state an obvious fact that many people really ignore the obvious that drugs and violent crimes are bad but when it affects their kids or community maybe then they should take notice. But, would their mark show up and would they get lucky? Discussing another agent and his record brings to light how many agents or officers are jealous of the attention some get from superiors and just why some go after the collar harder than others. But, the truth behind who gets the credit is discussed including the politics involved just like in many other jobs. So, just who is this Reardon who is considered their star? Will he get this collar? Bad Intent by Michael Tabman one great author hoping to take down many bad dudes.
Bad intent is not just about the inner workings of the FBI but how some agents will do anything to be in the limelight and cover for those, even superiors that need their mistakes erased or as we say covered up. This was not a drug buy but drug trafficking deal where this cell was collecting believe it or not its own money and rebuilding its inventory. Imagine what would happen if someone ripped off the stash. The consequences would be more than grave. But, when the scene was assessed and the players seemed to be in place the situation did not seem to be playing out as most did. The superior running the show named Franks would not allow questions, responses or anyone second guessing his command even if his procedures and handling of the situation might be wrong. Why were the couriers for the cartel present? What was taking so long? What were they talking about and why? The end result is something that you might see on crime or cop shows but when the author takes the reader inside the mind of one FBI agent who revels in the glory of the bust you begin to wonder about many different things. Officers down some more critical then others and drug cartel that just might be back for more as Volume One in which the definition of Bad Intent can mean many things. Drug cartels with the intent to sell, cops with the intent to intimate and stake claim to the collar at any cost and of course the criminal whose only intent is to get away.
Let’s meet the cartel. Hidden behind heavily fortified gates the head of the cartel’s car entered the well-guarded compound. Rojas, the head of the cartel bought this training compound over 30 years ago. Guards stationed everywhere, some former Columbian cops and military and others on the government payroll allow the reader to understand the world of corruption and how it festers like a bad disease gone wild. But, chaos ensued round so ammunition was spent, spinning tires and a plane hovering overhead. But, was it just a plane? One man with so much power who looked the part in ever way owned and inherited a cocaine empire but there was much more hidden within the walls of his factory. Many products like coffee and others in high demand were sold but not at top dollar or for high profit. Rojas was smart: “Cover the real product that Americans demanded: COCAINE.” Just this was done lies within the walls of the factory and his compound. Deep within these walls was women scantily glad working for him making sure they were loyal. But, when he approaches one woman what happens next is not only revolting but allows the reader to know to what great lengths this man would go to control his workers and what happens when he thinks someone is stealing from him. But, that is not the worst of it as one of his workers tells him of the many loses he faced that week, which other cartel lost to the police and the end result. One man named Ramon would lose more than just his family if he failed in his new mission. Forcing him to move to New York and leaving his family behind in Columbia he knew the end result for them if he failed. But, life in New York was not what he expected and he lost the respect he received at home on the faces that walked in Manhattan.
Corruption runs high not only business but as we learn in many police departments that require that storeowners pay for protection or they pay in other ways. When Tony Scarletta does business with two cops they think they have him by the barrel but do they? When Tony decides to make a deal with the cartel just how far will he go to make a big profit dealing with the cartel and Ramon?
The start of another year and our FBI agent Bob is discussing his night out with his wife. No liquor allowed, as he is FBI and could be called at any minute. Some agents had what the author explains to the reader as command posts or official of police presence to make the public feel safe. Returning to work the next day proved unusual as Bob was summoned to the officer of the Principal Legal Advisor and Zucarelli offered to take him there but why? Remember in the first Volume the drug bust and one cop was shot by a Columbian dealer leaving him permanently injured as Zucarelli reveals on the way to the lawyer’s office and much more. Author Michael Tabman takes readers on an inside look into the police department, the legal workings of the FBI and the amount of honest and corrupt police work that goes on everyday. Using his real life knowledge as a former FBI agent, he allows the reader to experience the events along with the characters first hand. Just what did everyone see that Bob did not? Was the incident an accident or did the drug dealer really go for Fremont’s gun? What message was the detective trying to drive home when Bob Douglas expresses what he thinks really happened and Mark another?
A meeting that would definitely change everything as John Browning representing the NYPD and Vickie Caroleo the FBI. The explanation of what the expected him to say and do let’s the reader know that it was their truth they wanted him to state when giving his statement. They wanted the guy taken down and would make sure Bob would comply with their wishes. What do you they want? Well of course they can’t tell him what to say when he gives his statement to the Inspection Division but they can definitely suggest or imply. Why, after five years did the ADIC know his name? But, before they could discuss the meeting while driving back to the station something happens that let’s you know there is much more to come for these two as the cartel just lost not cocaine but a boatload of money and what Mark thinks the real war has just begun
Meet Assistant Director in Charge J. Peter Gunn when speaking to the director about he outcome of the meeting with Bob. The Director was not happy as he relates to Gunn that a task force cop got shot right in front of Bob and his facts might not be as accurate as they would like. While speaking to the Director a decision about Bob is made and you get the inside scoop on what happens when you are honest and not a team player doing it their way if even it is wrong. But, taking a drug dealer off the streets might be right but hanging him for a shooting he might not have committed convenient. The war between the DEA and the FBI discussed and how they each handle things and why the FBI does not want them in the forefront handling the drug war is quite interesting as you learn more about inter agency cooperation of lack of it and why. The DEA doing well in many areas that they broadcast the when the FBI seized several hundred thousand dollars they could not link it to the drug cartels since it was found in the diamond district. The problem as related by Gunn is that the Director does not stand up to the DEA or Congress and he knew the FBI had to do something fast to be on top. As he calls it FBI Primacy. But, what happens next and what Mark and Bob do just might even the odds against the drug cartel and link the Diamond District to these dealers too. Going by the book or just bending the rules. Is it right if you get the bad guys?
We continue with the drug bust and the squad sitting on the streets of the Bronx where this reviewer grew up. Seems that many are afraid to be seen outside and very prominent but waiting for a search warrant to complete was necessary. As Bob confronts the AUSA to get a warrant her responses are flippant and she does not make it easy all the while allowing the culprits room to get away. But, what happens next and whether she gives them the warrant will not be for the reasons you think. As I listened to the discussion I could see why the FBI or police become frustrated and short tempered when these prosecutors are really more concerned about their own hide and often not about getting the warrant to get the criminal off the streets. But, what Zucarelli does to take control of the situation you have to read for yourself and decide if he was really helping Bob or there is an underlying reason for his intervention. Playing as a team player is necessary and Bob learns a lesson that night he just might never forget. When the situation becomes tense and a decision is made just what happens will destroy more than just the lives of those going in to take down the drug dealers. Who was behind the bad move you will not be revealed as it is classified and I would never divulge that information? Just what happens at the end of Volume 5 will have to wait until the author completes Volume 6 and I hope many more as author Michael Tabman tells in his straightforward, hardnosed and straight from the hip format. Bad Intent: Police, Criminals or both. You decide when you hear the voices of Bob Douglas and Mark Zucarelli and you decide who really has the Bad Intent.
Fran Lewis: reviewer