Deirdre Capone, 79, great-niece of notorious Chicago crime boss Al Capone - dubbed 'Public Enemy No. 1' by US-based media at the time - believes that over $100 million is still out there, stashed in hidden homes, secret underground vaults and containers among various areas in the United States and beyond, The Sun reported.
Deirdre Capon told The Sun newspaper that the once-mighty Chicago mafia boss, who she knew as 'Uncle Al' and someone who would dress up as Santa Claus on occasion, put millions of dollars aside for the family.
Deirdre doesn't believe, however, there are any mafia treasures hidden in Chicago - a theory reportedly furthered by an empty vault found in 1986 - but claims Al Capone stored crime money in numerous security boxes.
According to The Sun, Capone is believed to have hidden mafia millions before he was imprisoned in 1932 on tax evasion charges, first at Atlanta Penitentiary, before being moved to the notorious Alcatraz Federal Prison in the middle of San Francisco Bay in California.
Deirdre, who later became a businesswoman in Minnesota, told UK-based media that her grandfather assured her that she would be “taken care of” but so far she has been unable to locate any of Al Capone's money. She suggests, however, that some of the "treasures" were held in Cuba - and maybe in locations she knows he visited, such as Wisconsin, Arkansas, and Canada, The Sun reported.
Deirdre said she had done all she could within her means to find the hidden millions and has visited locations linked to her notorious uncle. A busy career and family life meant the hunt for Al Capone's financial legacy could not take priority.
“I’m guessing more than $100 million [...] I tried to do whatever I could from my perspective to locate the money but I don't have the wherewithal, I don't have the legal means [...] I really do believe that a lot of the money was put into the safety deposit boxes in Cuba. I remember seeing the keys. But I'm sure they were all in different assumed names", Deirdre Capone said, cited by The Sun.
Born in 1899, Al Capone was a ruthless gangster nicknamed 'Scarface' due to a prominent facial scar, reportedly stole millions through various illegal means. In particular, bootlegging during the Prohibition era in the US, operating brothels, gambling, money laundering, blackmailing, extortion, racketeering and more, throughout the 1920s.
Al Capone is reportedly believed to have contracted syphilis in his late teens. His great-niece reportedly claims there was a change in her uncle's behavior and a drop in his mental health after he was treated for the disease shortly before being released from Alcatraz.
“My grandfather told me this with tears streaming down his cheeks. He said, ‘Deirdre, they called me from Alcatraz and said your uncle was getting out, but they just discovered they had a new treatment for syphilis and wanted to try it out on your uncle so I agreed [...] They took him out of Alcatraz and they put him in the hospital on Terminal Island, Los Angeles, and that is the first time that you will find any press at all that Al Capone became angry and violent and they had to put him in solitary confinement [...] And it's because they were injecting my uncle with mercury because they thought mercury could cure syphilis", Deirdre said, cited by The Sun.
According to Deidre, after the gangster was released in November 1939 the family organized a 'big party' for him but the mafia boss could not remember his relatives.
She believes that Al Capone's failing mental health prevented him from being able to pass on details and about the secret locations of the hidden millions before he died on 25 January 1946 at the age of 47.
Deirdre describes her notorious uncle as a smart and successful businessman who employed over 300 people at any given time, whom he paid and treated well.
"I was raised as a Capone and I was raised with the motto [...] Family is everything, your word is your bond and never let your head get too big for your hat", Deirdre said, cited by The Sun.