Dirty Dealing

A True Story of Smuggling,
Murder and the FBI's Biggest Investigation

by Gary Cartwright


... Guiberson, in fact, was one of the few lawyers anywhere who specialized in tape-recorded evidence.

In the three and a half months between the indictments and the pretrial hearings, Guiberson reviewed all 914 reels—more than 1,000 hours—of government tape. Using linguistic experts and computers, he made his own transcripts, which differed significantly from the government version. The equipment and techniques used by Guiberson were considerably more sophisticated than those used by the Justice Department, and the results showed. Sometimes the differences were small variations of punctuation or emphasis. And sometimes they were enormous. In one place where government technicians had transcribed Joe Chagra saying, "Kill him, kill him," he had actually said, "Get them, get them." Warren Burnett, a lawyer who was seldom impressed by the work of a colleague, was euphoric when he spoke of Guiberson. "What he's doing is unique," Burnett said. "No one else in the country is even close. The prosecution is still in the horse-and-buggy era compared to the defense's tapes."