This letter to the editor is from retired FBI Special Agent John L. Barrett, Jr., aka Jack Barrett, currently the superintendent of detectives, Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), Washington, D.C. I take particular exception to the premise set out by your writer Paul Fain (“Fuzz Buster,” 8/1) that I was hired by Chief of Police Charles Ramsey only because I was a “friend” of Chief Ramsey’s.
Let me clarify this personally offensive thesis by first stating that I am proud to be called a friend of Chief of Police Charles Ramsey. Second, let me state what your author failed to state: that I am a former special agent of the FBI, having served my country in that capacity for 29 years until December 1999, when I retired as the special agent in charge of the Washington Field Office’s Criminal Division, comprising approximately 250 agent and professional support men and women serving in the District of Columbia.
If Fain had been impartial and thorough, he would have learned from D.C. Councilmember Kathy Patterson that I had a broad and extensive investigative background, having spent 18 years as a case agent in New York, Newark, and Albany before being promoted to the white-collar-crime/organized-crime supervisor in the FBI’s Albany office in 1988. Fain would also have learned that I was the recipient of the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award for my investigative efforts to disrupt the corrupt activities of the Cosa Nostra Gambino and Genovese crime families in their penetration of the International Longshoremen’s Association up and down the East Coast, from Miami to New York City. Fain would have learned that I was the case agent of a $25 million bank-fraud investigation perpetrated by the Genovese family in New Jersey, and my investigative efforts led to the conviction of Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno, acting head of the family, and his capo Matty “the Horse” Ianiello. And Fain would have also learned that I led an FBI investigative/forensic team to Palermo, Sicily, at the request of the Italian government following the bombing assassinations of Italian magistrates Falcone and Borsellino in May and July of 1992, respectively. I also testified at the Mafia trial in Sicily in which the defendants were convicted in part on the basis of that investigation.
Fain makes no mention of my assignment as the assistant special agent in charge of the Miami FBI office, as the program manager for the dynamic organized-crime/drug program. Fain also fails to mention my assignment as the acting assistant administrator for intelligence at the Drug Enforcement Agency for a year prior to my assignment as the special agent in charge of the Washington office’s Criminal Division. Fain also fails to mention my management oversight of the FBI’s organized-crime/drug program, violent-crimes program, and the white-collar-crimes program in partnership with the MPD under Chief Ramsey’s leadership, which led to the disruption of drug transporting and distributing illegal drugs here in Washington, the arrest and conviction of some of the most violent street gangs operating in Washington, and the arrest and prosecution of MPD officers who had betrayed the public’s trust and committed crimes against the citizens of the District of Columbia!
I make no apology for Chief Ramsey’s hiring me to be his superintendent of detectives, and am proud to be a member of the Metropolitan Police Department serving the citizens of the District of Columbia. Shame on you, Paul Fain, for trying to distort the truth by leaving out the facts!
Superintendent of Detectives
Metropolitan Police Department