Train and bank robber Butch Cassidy was the leader of a gang of criminal outlaws known as the "Wild Bunch" in the Old West. The son of ranchers, he ran away from home as a teenager and became involved in a life of crime. He started with minor criminal offenses and eventually became a much-feared robber.
Italian-American gangster Joe Gallo, nicknamed "Crazy Joe,” was part of New York’s Colombo crime family. Initially an associate of the Profaci crime family, Gallo was later involved in the First Colombo War. He was suspected of launching an attack on Joseph Colombo and was shot dead on his 43rd birthday.
William M. Tweed was an American politician best known for serving as the boss of Tammany Hall, which had a major influence on the political scene of 19th-century New York State. He was later convicted for stealing millions of dollars from New York City taxpayers. His life and career inspired several films, such as Up in Central Park and Liberty.
Known as the Chessboard Killer, Alexander Pichushkin set out to kill people matching all the 64 squares on his chessboard, and would cross out a square with every kill. Mostly targeting elderly people, he managed to kill about 48 to 60 people and was eventually sentenced to life imprisonment.
Leonarda Cianciulli was an Italian serial killer who murdered three women and turned their bodies into soaps and tea cakes. She is also known as the "Soap-Maker of Correggio." Between 1939 and 1940, she killed three of her neighbors--all of them middle-aged women--as part of human sacrifices. She was eventually found guilty of her crimes and sentenced to prison.
Herschel Grynszpan was a German Jew best remembered for assassinating a German diplomat named Ernst vom Rath to avenge the persecuted Jews. Rath's assassination had a huge impact on the Jews as the Nazis cited his murder as justification for their planned antisemitic pogroms against the Jews in Germany. Herschel Grynszpan disappeared in 1944 and was declared dead in 1960.
Alois Brunner was an Austrian SS-Hauptsturmführer who played a major role in the execution of the Holocaust. Considered Adolf Eichmann's right-hand man, Brunner was responsible for deporting more than 100,000 European Jews from places like Austria, Slovakia, and France to concentration camps and ghettos in Eastern Europe. After the war, Alois Brunner evaded all attempts to kill or capture him.
Rod Ferrell is an American cult leader and murderer. A member of the Vampire Clan, Ferrell claimed to be a vampire. It was later ascertained that he had become obsessed with a game called Vampire: The Masquerade. In 1998, Rod Ferrell became the youngest American on Death Row after pleading guilty to the double murder of a couple from Florida.
Part of the infamous criminal couple Bonnie and Clyde, with Bonnie Parker, Clyde Barrow had been a criminal long before he met Bonnie. While they were known for robbing gas stations, banks, and restaurants. Their exploits were romanticized in films and later inspired gangster chic fashion.
French socialite Françoise Dior was the niece of world-renowned designer Christian Dior. However, the heiress later became a Nazi sympathizer and married neo-Nazi figure and Holocaust denier Colin Jordan. She was associated with the National Socialist Movement but eventually lost most of her fortune and died in oblivion.
Robert Durst is a real estate heir and suspected killer of three people, including his first wife Kathleen McCormack Durst and longtime friend Susan Berman. The events surrounding Durst's trial have inspired films and TV series like All Good Things and The Jinx. His life also inspired the book A Deadly Secret, which was later adapted into a TV film.
Businessman, felon and pastor, Barry Minkow opened his first business while in high school. But faced with fund crunch, he soon resorted to felony, ultimately executing a massive investment fraud, resulting in imprisonment. Later he became a pastor and fraud investigator, concurrently continuing with his illegal dealings, resulting in another confinement and a sentence to pay $612 million in restitution.
Paul Manafort is an American former lobbyist, lawyer, political consultant, and convicted bank fraudster. As a political consultant, he served as an adviser to the presidential campaigns of Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, and George H. W. Bush. He is also credited with co-founding a lobbying firm called Black, Manafort & Stone.
Darya Nikolayevna Saltykova was a noblewoman, serial killer, and sadist. She achieved notoriety for torturing and killing at least 38 female serfs. Since she was well-connected with the Russian nobility and with those in power at the royal court, Darya got away with many of her murders until she was found guilty in a trial organized by Empress Catherine II.
John Christie was a British serial killer who was active during the 1940s and early-1950s. He killed at least eight people and was sentenced to death for the murder of his wife Ethel. The killings were dramatized in the 1971 film 10 Rillington Place, in which Christie was played by Richard Attenborough. Christie's murders also inspired other works of art.