Searching For Hoffa: Investigators Find Suspicious Concrete Slab
Federal agents searching for the body of former Teamsters chief Jimmy Hoffa believe they are about to crack one of America’s biggest unsolved mysteries.
CBS News has confirmed a suspicious concrete slab was retrieved by investigators from the Oakland Township field where they have been digging for any sign of Hoffa. It’s too soon, however, to know whether the slab is anything more than part of an old foundation for a barn.
The dig — the latest in what’s been nearly a 40-year search — is reportedly the result of extensive FBI interviews with former mobster Tony Zerilli.
James Riddle “Jimmy” Hoffa (born February 14, 1913; disappeared July 30, 1975, declared legally dead July 30, 1982) was an American labor union leader.
Hoffa was closely involved with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) union, as an organizer, from 1932 to 1975. By 1952, Hoffa had risen to national vice-president of the IBT, and served as the union’s General President between 1958 and 1971. He secured the first national agreement for teamsters’ rates in 1964, and played a major role in the growth and development of the union, which eventually became the largest single union in the United States, with over 1.5 million members at certain times, during his terms as its leader.
Hoffa became involved with organized crime from the early years of his Teamsters work, and this connection continued until his disappearance in 1975. He was convicted of jury tampering, attempted bribery, and fraud in 1964. Hoffa was imprisoned in 1967, and sentenced to 13 years, after exhausting the appeal process. In mid-1971 he resigned the Teamsters’ presidency, an action that was part of a pardon agreement with PresidentRichard Nixon, to facilitate his release later that year. Nixon blocked Hoffa from union activities until 1980 (which would have been the end of his prison term, had he served the full sentence). Hoffa attempted to overturn this order and to regain support.
Hoffa was last seen in late July 1975, outside the Machus Red Fox, a suburban Detroit restaurant. His disappearance gave rise to many theories as to what had happened to him and where his body was hidden. No body has yet been found.