"You're lucky he didn't have an ice pick in his hands. I know how this guy performs."
-Mobster Paul Volpe speaking about a Buffalo-mafia enforcer named "Cicci"
Canada is lauded the world over as a law abiding, peaceful country - a shining example to all nations. Such a view, also shared by most Canadians, is typically naïve and misinformed. Throughout its history, to present day and beyond, Canada has been and will continue to be home to criminals and crime organizations that are brilliant at finding ways to make money - a lot of money - illegally.
Iced: The Story of Organized Crime in Canada is a remarkable parallel history to the one generally accepted and taught in our schools. Organized crime has had a significant impact on the shaping of this country and the lives of its people. The most violent and thuggish - outlaw motorcycle gangs like Hells Angels - have been raised to mythic proportions. The families who owned distilleries during Prohibition, such as the Bronfmans, built vast fortunes that today are vested in corporate holdings. The mafia in Montreal created and controlled the largest heroin and cocaine smuggling empire in the world, feeding the insatiable appetite of our American neighbours. Today, gangs are laying waste the streets of Vancouver, and "BC bud" flows into the U.S. as the marijuana of choice.
Organized crime is as old as this nation's founding, with pirates ravaging the east coast, even as hired guns by colonial governments. Since our nation's earliest times, government and crime groups have found that collusion can have its mutual benefits.
Comprehensive, informative and entertaining - as you will discover in the remarkable period pieces devised by the author and the illustrations commissioned specially for this book - Iced is a romp across the nation and across the centuries. In these pages you will meet crime groups that are at once sordid and inept, yet resourceful entrepreneurs and self-proclaimed champions of the underdog, who operate in full sight of their communities and the law. This is the definitive book on organized crime in Canada, and a unique contribution to our understanding of Canadian history.