Meyer Lansky’s Net Worth: Meyer Lansky was an American organized crime figure who, after adjusting for inflation, had net assets equal to $ 600 million dollars at the time of his death. When he died, the FBI believed he left $ 300- $ 400 million in bank accounts hidden worldwide. Money was never received as of this writing. Meyer earned this massive fortune for his role as an accountant and “chairman of the board” of the National Crime Syndicate. He was also the director of “Murder Inc.” at one time, the Enforcement Division that organized crime syndicates in many areas of New York. Murder Inc. is believed to be responsible for 500–1,000 murders between 1929 and 1941. In his 1983 New York Times obituary, Headline described Mayer as “the financial wizard of organized crime”. Hyman Roth’s character in “The Godfather Part II” was based on Lansky.
early life: Meyer Lancey was born Mir Sukolsky in Grodno (formerly Russian Empire). When he was brought to the United States, his parents did not remember his birthday, so an immigration officer listed it on July 4, 1902.
Lansky immigrated to the United States in 1911 with his mother and brother. He joined his father, who had moved to Manhattan’s Lower East Side two years earlier.
Meyer had an “A” grade right at school, but did not progress beyond eighth grade.
One of Mayer’s closest childhood friends was Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel. They will become lifelong best friends.
Criminal career: After leaving school, Mayer worked as a tool and die maker. He made ten cents an hour. For extra money on the side, he ran the neighborhood dice game.
In 1920, the US passed the Volstead Act which prohibited the manufacture and sale of alcohol. During this time Meyer was working as an auto mechanic and noticed that many of the cars he was servicing were stolen cars by bootleggers.
Accepting an opportunity, Lansky and Siegel partnered with a new friend named Charles “Lucky” Luciano to build their bootlegging business. Technically he started a vehicle rental business which was a company in front of him to bring liquor from Canada and shut down cargo vessels sitting in international waters.
Lansky would later admit that he had a crew in this period “The most efficient international shipping business is going on in the world“There was no paper trail. No contract. No invoices. Lansky conducted the entire operation with his calculator like brain and complete memory.
The trio put their profits in over 100 legitimate and illegal businesses. He started an enforcement business for other bootleggers, which included murders.
In 1931, Lansky helped organize the murders of mafia owners Salvatore Maranzano and Joe Maseria.
The prohibition was repealed in 1933 and the gang indulged in illegal gambling, earning a small fortune.
In 1934 the trio formed an organization called the “National Crime Syndicate”, which merged the fragmented system of disorganized mafia gangs into an affiliated federation.
Gambling and Casino Empire: In the late 1930s, Meyer traveled to Cuba and met with the country’s dictator Fulgencio Batista to discuss legally gambling and setting up a casino on the island. The result was the 21-story Riviera Hotel and Casino, the first building to be A / C in Cuba.
After World War II, Lansky and his associates invested their names in casinos in Las Vegas, such as the Flamingo Hotel, the Sands, and El Cortez. He also bought a large amount of real estate in Miami Beach, which at the time was a dusty, undeveloped border.
In 1959, the Cuban revolution saw Fidel Castro’s rise to power. Castro’s troops destroyed slot machines and gambling tables at Lansky’s casino, then seized the buildings altogether.
later life: In the 1960s, Lansky advised lending and managing his vast empire of legal businesses. At his peak in the late 1960s he owned a bank in Switzerland and hired a friend from his 1920s days to work locally as his full-time wealth manager.
Lansky fled to Israel in 1970 to escape federal tax evasion charges. Before being evicted from Israel he offered $ 1 million to any country that would grant him sanctuary. Neither country accepted the offer and was forced to return to the US. Mayer was arrested shortly after landing in Miami on 7 November 1972. Within an hour of his detention, he posted $ 250,000 in cash as bail. This is equivalent to $ 1.6 million in today’s dollars. He was acquitted of all charges in 1974.
Throughout his life, Lansky was never convicted of anything more serious than an illegal gambling charge, resulting in a two-month prison sentence.
The death: He spent the remainder of his years in Miami with a modest life.
Mayer Lansky died of lung cancer on January 15, 1983, at the age of 80. He is survived by his wife and three children.
Money and finance: The FBI believed Meyer had at least 300 million dollars hidden in bank accounts around the world. Never received this money. Lanci’s biographer Robert Lacey claimed that Cuban’s loss of a casino wiped out his fate, leaving him unable to pay for the health expenses of his crippled son.
A granddaughter later claimed that Lansky left behind $ 57,000 in cash.
In 2010 his daughter Sandra claimed that Lansky transferred $ 15 million to his brother sometime in the 1970s to conceal his assets from the IRS.
In 2015, Lansky’s grandson Gary Rapoport petitioned the Cuban government for compensation for seizing the Riviera Hotel.