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Durham County Library Hosts True Crime Author to Discuss Disappearance of Native Durham Kingpin

Program: Meet the Author: Ron Chepesiuk
Date: Monday, July 1
Time: 7 p.m.
Location: Stanford L. Warren Library, 1201 Fayetteville St.
Cost: Free and open to the public

About: Durham County Library will host award-winning true crime author Ron Chepesiuk as he discusses his latest investigative book on the legendary Matthews, Black Caesar: The Rise and Disappearance of Frank Matthews, Kingpin. The program will take place on Monday, July 1, at Stanford L. Warren Library, 1201 Fayetteville Street at 7 p.m.

On July 2, 1973, Matthews jumped bail in New York City. He is now recognized as the longest missing fugitive in the history of the United States Drug Enforcement Agency. The conditions around his disappearance have remained a mystery. Matthews was said to have dominated the 1970’s heroin market. Based in New York City, his empire encompassed 21 states, and was reinforced with the support of high ranking contacts across the globe. However, Matthews became most notorious when he challenged the Mafia, particularly La Cosa Nostra, for supremacy in the lucrative heroin and cocaine trade in predominantly African-American and Latino urban areas. As result, he became known as “Black Caesar.” Although law enforcement considered Matthews a ruthless drug kingpin, many poor and marginalized people viewed him as an urban Robin Hood who readily employed former neighborhood friends in his illegal business enterprises.

Chepesiuk is also the author of Drug Lords: The Rise and Fall of The Cali Cartel, Gangsters of Harlem, Black Gangsters of Chicago, Gangsters of Miami, The Trafficantes: Godfathers from Florida and Sergeant Smack: The Legendary Lives and Times of Ike Atkinson. Chepesuik is known for his research of cold cases often abandoned by DEA, CIA, and other law enforcement agencies.

For more information about this program, contact Carter B. Cue at 919-560-0282 or visit

Durham County Library encourages Discovery, connects the Community and leads in Literacy. As a department of Durham County Government, the library furthers Goal 1 of the county’s Strategic Plan by enhancing cultural, educational and creative opportunities. For more information about the library, visit

Contact: Gina Rozier
919-560-0151 or

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