In the beginning of the 50's, United States
seeked to expose and
bring into public attention
the growing issue of organized crime
at that time.
It started on April 1950, when a dead body of a gambling kingpin
from Kansas City was found in a Democratic clubhouse. That assassination raised concerns about the growth
of organized crime and its involvement with politics. The need for
an investigation committee concerning this issue was discovered, and
on May 3, 1950, the Senate created an investigation committee of
5 members, lead by a Democratic Senator from Tennessee,
In its 15 months of hearings, the committee, investigating corruption,
crime syndicates and illegal activities, visited several large cities,
in which TV broadcasts were interrupted to bring the work of the committee
to the attention of the public. The most notable hearing was when the
committee reached Broadway, New York, to interview Frank Costello. An estimated number of 30 million watched or listened to the hearings.
In Illinois, the Committee helped to expose a Chicago Police
scandal, which later brought down the Senate career of Scott Lucas,
a Democratic Majority Leader.
The completion of the hearings signaled the Senate to implement
some suggestions about how to better tighten the laws concerning the
prevention of corruption and organized crime. It caused the FBI
to stop denying the existence of the underworld.
summarized from sources: