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First he acted as enforcer to bootlegger extraordinaire Larry Fay, who had raked in half a million dollars in two years by selling whisky smuggled to the Big Apple from Canada.Then, when Fay decided to go straight in the mid-1920s, Madden hooked up with Bill Dwyer, known as the King of the Rum Runners thanks to his control of New York’s harbour.
He even offered his support to Charles Lindbergh following the abduction of the hero pilot’s infant son.
The good times were, however, rapidly drawing to a close.
Over the next eight years he became a key player in his area’s Gopher crime gang, with his exploits earning him the self-explanatory nickname of ‘The Killer’.
In 1912 he shot dead a rival crook on a trolleybus in front of a dozen passengers, pausing only to ring the vehicle’s bell before pulling the trigger.
Within months Prohibition was over and ‘The Killer’ – now in his 40s and suffering from ill health – quit New York for the resort city of Hot Springs, Arkansas.
Some have claimed that Madden’s marriage in 1935 to the daughter of a former postmaster shows that his years in Hot Springs were ones of quiet retirement.Working as a cloth dresser in a local mill, Francis is said to have dreamed of starting afresh with his brood in America.Mary eventually made the big move, crossing the Atlantic in early 1901 on the White Star Line’s RMS Oceanic – but passenger records indicate she did so without her husband.One US paper, the Lawrence Journal-World, waxed lyrical about his support of charities, especially those benefiting young people.Selwyn Raab, author of Five Families: The Rise, Decline and Resurgence of America’s Most Powerful Mafia Empires, begs to differ, describing Madden as the city’s “illegal gambling monarch”.They settled in the lawless Manhattan neighbourhood of Hell’s Kitchen, where Madden made sporadic visits to St Michael’s Parochial School.Tags: Adult Dating, affair dating, sex dating