How Not to Rob a Bank

And Other Stories from 20 Years as a Federal Prosecutor


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SKU: 9781476690216 Category: Tags: ,

About the Book

During his 20-year career as a federal prosecutor, the author worked hundreds of criminal cases, from a botched attempted bank robbery to high profile death penalty cases. In this collection of stories, the author recounts tales of trauma, drama and criminal minds.
While many prosecutors might share their reflections on the details and operations of legal proceedings, the author instead focuses this collection on the human aspects of the criminals and their trials. The book ruminates on human nature, contemplating the motivations of the featured criminals and assessing the impact their crimes had on victims, family members and others. Some of the stories are light-hearted and humorous, while others are heartbreaking, but all provide unique and compelling insight into the all too human world of federal crime.

About the Author(s)

Honorable C.J. Williams is a United States District Court Judge in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, whose three-decade legal career included criminal defense work and more than two decades as a federal prosecutor.


Bibliographic Details

Hon. C.J. Williams
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 272
Bibliographic Info: index
Copyright Date: 2023
pISBN: 978-1-4766-9021-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4836-1
Imprint: Exposit

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
1:  Don’t Make a Federal Case Out of It! 5
2:  Bungling Burglars 11
3:  Dr. Feelgood 18
4:  A Happy Ending 30
5:  Ocean Pollution in Iowa 34
6:  “Shoot the Bastard, Rico, Shoot Him!” 45
7:  A Tattoo Artist, a Chef, and a Civil War Buff 50
8:  Trouble in River City 58
9:  White Knight ­Bleed-Out Scheme 88
10:  Cold Dish, Hot Jeep 96
11:  Snatching Victory from the Jaws of Defeat 107
12:  Ruthless Drug Dealer 111
13:  Money Laundering Professionals 115
14:  A Bad Cop 124
15:  Death by Heroin 127
16:  If It Sounds Too Good to Be True… 135
17:  The Molting Maltese Falcon 143
18:  Slumlord and Damage Deposits 148
19:  Immigration Raid Leads to Bank Fraud Trial 160
20:  Child Prostitution in Iowa 180
21:  Bankruptcy Fraud on the Beach 186
22:  Prosecution of a Pyromaniac 195
23:  The Tale of the ­Marijuana-Laced Brownies 203
24:  Flimflam Artist 208
25:  Wiretapping with a Baby Monitor 214
26:  A Woody Fraud 221
27:  On a D.C. Detail 227
28:  Not Everything Is Too Good to Be True 242
29:  Murder on the Reservation 254
Conclusion 264
Index 265