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Eliot Ness was a law enforcement official in Chicago, best known for his efforts to enforce Prohibition as head of "The Untouchables."
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They wanted Ness removed from his position. They received their wish when Ness divorced his wife of ten years to marry Evaline McAndrew and moved to Lakewood in 1939.
Holding a position with the Federal Social Protection Program there, he soon became the object of criticism once again. Critics claimed he had become at ease in his duties and paid more attention to his personal interests than his job. Ironically,
his reputation was severely damaged when news of a car accident due to intoxication was released. Two months after the accident, Ness resigned and took a job with the Office of Defense overseeing a campaign against social diseases. His second wife divorced him and moved to New York.
Eliot Ness and his men forced Capone's organization to buy alcohol outside of Chicago and smuggle it in, a more expensive and time-consuming process. Successful in snuffing out Capone's bootlegging business, the special unit then had the awesome task of assembling a legal case against the mobster and his followers. On June 12, 1931, Ness went before a federal grand jury and accumulated indictments against Capone and 68 members of his mob for conspiracy to breach the Volstead Act, specifying five thousand different offenses against Prohibition Laws.
In the end, however, Capone was never brought to trial on any Prohibition charges. Treasury agents had already presented evidence on June 5, 1931, to indict Capone for income tax evasion. U.S. District Attorney Johnson decided to put the mobster on trial for the Treasury charges, saving Ness's Prohibition violations in case Capone escaped conviction. The trial began on October 6, 1931, with Ness present in the courtroom each day. Within two weeks, Capone was found guilty and sentenced to eleven years in a federal penitentiary.
Eliot Ness died on May 7, 1957, in Coudersport, Pennsylvania.
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