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NYPD mugshot of Abraham Weinberg
Abraham "Bo" Weinberg (1897 – September 9, 1935?) was a Russian-born, JewishNew York City mobster who became a hitman and chief lieutenant for the Prohibition-era gang boss Dutch Schultz. As Schultz expanded his bootlegging operations into Manhattan during Prohibition, he recruited Abe Weinberg and his brother George into his gang. Abe Weinberg would become one of Schultz's top gunmen during the Manhattan Bootleg Wars and was a later suspect in the high-profile gangland slayings of Jack "Legs" Diamond, Vincent "Mad Dog" Coll, and mob boss Salvatore Maranzano.
In 1933, Schultz was indicted for tax evasion. Rather than face the charges, Schultz went into hiding and Abe Weinberg assumed control of his criminal operations. When Schultz returned from hiding, he became suspicious of Weinberg. It was rumored that Weinberg had been secretly negotiating with mob boss Lucky Luciano and Murder, Inc. boss Louis Buchalter to retain control of the Schultz organization.
On September 9, 1935, Bo Weinberg left a Midtown Manhattan nightclub and was never seen again. Conflicting reports emerged about the manner of his death. Gangland lore held that Schultz had personally executed him with a .45 automatic in a Midtown hotel room, while Schultz's lawyer Dixie Davis reported witnessing Schultz's bodyguard Lulu Rosenkrantz shoot Weinberg in the back of a car after a night of drinking; Davis later maintained that the shooting could have been accidental. Schultz himself informed Weinberg's brother George that "We hadda put a kimono on Bo," Schultz's code phrase to indicate that Weinberg's corpse had been encased in cement and dropped into the East River.
In popular culture
Bo Weinberg would be portrayed in the following films:
- Billy Bathgate 1991 by Bruce Willis (in which Weinberg is depicted as being dropped alive into the East River after having his feet fixed in cement).
- Gangster Wars 1981 by Dana Goldstone
- Hit the Dutchman 1991 by Matt Servitto
- Hoodlum 1997 by Joe Guzaldo
Billy Bathgate (film) is based on the historical fiction novel of the same name by E.L. Doctorow, 1989.
- Lacey, Robert. Little Man: Meyer Lansky and the Gangster Life. London: Century, 1991. ISBN 0-7126-2426-0
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