Saturday, May 17, 2008

New Canadian Film Focuses on Mafia Connection to JFK's Murder

"Le Piege Americain", (The American Trap) a new Canadian film sheds light on the life and career of Lucien Rivard, a Montreal mobster who was involved with Santos Trafficante, the Florida mafioso and others. Rivard was active in the heroin operations of the Corsican mafia in Cuba until he was expelled by Castro. He may be a person of interest in the assassination of President Kennedy but information is sketchy. The cast of characters includes CIA agents; a "Maurice Bishop" is depicted. Here's a brief synopsis: " It is the mid-1960s. The Cold War is raging. The world is still reeling from the assassination of JFK - but has yet to lose his kid brother Bobby. In the midst of all this, a reluctant hero by the name of Lucien Rivard becomes enmeshed in a web of global political intrigue and corruption. The United States, Russia and France are embroiled in a strategic battle over Third World natural resources. To keep the upper hand, each of their secret services has joined forces with various organized crime factions. Lucien is the go-between, travelling to the casinos of Havana, the night clubs of Dallas, the seedy heroin labs of Marseille, the tropical jungles of Indonesia and the urban jungles of New Orleans and Montreal. As tensions heat up, he becomes a secret weapon for a black ops organization over which he has no control - and an unwitting protagonist as a tragic chain of events begins to unfold before his very eyes"
Why the synopsis describes him as a "hero" is beyond me.
The real Rivard had been involved in drug trafficking in Canada since the 1940's and was eventually captured in France. He made a dramatic prison escape in 1965 (while awaiting extradition in Bordeaux) and wrote a letter while at large to Prime Minister Lester Pearson which led to allegations of his involvement with Canadian government officials. The scandal provoked the resignation of Canada's attorney general Guy Favreau and led to the rise of Pierre Trudeau who eventually became prime minister. Rivard was extradited to the USA through the efforts of Robert F. Kennedy and was tried for heroin trafficking in Houston Texas and sentenced to 20 years in prison. He was paroled in 1975 and returned to Montreal where some say he continued to direct a criminal empire until his death in 2002 at age 86.

The official site of the film is here:


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