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Richie Roberts

Former Detective & Prosecutor Made Famous in the Hit Film "American Gangster".

Former Detective & Prosecutor Made Famous in the Hit Film "American Gangster".

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Richie Roberts Biography

In 1970s New York, there was no bigger, more notorious drug dealer than Frank Lucas, who the ruled the streets of Newark and Harlem. Nefariously brilliant, Lucas was a drug lord and killer who smuggled some of the most potent heroin ever seen in America from Southeast Asia, utilizing caskets and body bags of deceased American soldiers returning from the Vietnam War.

Richie Roberts is the larger-than-life detective who ended Lucas’s reign and brought him to justice. Tough, determined and fearless, Roberts worked at grave personal risk to painstakingly put together the case that would earn Frank Lucas a sentence of 30 years to life in federal prison. Lucas returned the favor by putting out a $100,000 contract on Robert’s life. The contract was never carried out and Lucas became a government informant, earning him release after serving seven years. The information obtained from Lucas led to scores of convictions, including cases against corrupt police officers, and forged an unlikely friendship between the two former enemies.

The 2007 hit film “American Gangster,” starring Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe, tells the story of Roberts’s pursuit of Lucas. The two served as creative consultants on the film, ensuring the story was accurately retold.

At the podium, Roberts captivates audiences with the spellbinding story of his pursuit and capture of Lucas. Drawing from his experiences, Roberts takes audiences on the wild and often harrowing trail of the American gangster. In a separate program, Roberts taps into his expertise in narcotics enforcement to delve deeply into the war on drugs. By asking difficult questions about past and current drug traffic, the penal system’s successes and failures, and the culture of drug use, Roberts invigorates the dialog on the nation’s drug problems and enforcement.

AT A GLANCE: Born in the Bronx, Roberts was raised by his grandparents until the age of 8, when he reunited with his parents and moved to Newark, NJ. After graduation from Weequahic High School, Roberts served in the United States Marine Corps. where he rose to the rank of sergeant and remained in the active reserves for 6 years.

A graduate of Rutgers University, Roberts worked as was a detective in the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office and specialized in investigating organized crime. Working undercover, he was responsible for hundreds of arrests of members of the Genovese, Lucchese, and Bruno crime families. The skills he gained infiltrating the Cosa Nostra would later prove invaluable in his pursuit of narcotics pushers like Frank Lucas.

Balancing his career and his legal ambitions, Roberts attended Seton Hall University’s evening law program and earned his J.D. in 1971. Upon graduation, he was appointed Assistant Prosecutor for Essex County, and was commissioned to be the director of the Essex County Bureau of Narcotics one year later. The Bureau was a federally funded strike force created to target major drug dealers – specifically to identify, arrest, and convict major heroin dealers. The integrated squad – made up of local law enforcement, D.E.A. and State Police, as well as Prosecutors and Sheriff’s Detectives – was responsible for thousands of arrests and convictions under Roberts’ leadership.

Since 1982, Roberts has been in private practice as a defense attorney working in both the state and federal courts. He opened up his own practice in 1985 where he remains active.

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FAQs on booking Richie Roberts

  • How do I book Richie Roberts to speak at my event?

    Our experienced booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure speakers like Richie Roberts for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment since 2002. Click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page to check availability for Richie Roberts, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get speaking fee information and check availability for Richie Roberts or any other speaker of your choice.
  • What are the speaker fees for Richie Roberts

    Speaking fees for Richie Roberts, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. The estimated fees to book Richie Roberts are for live events and for virtual events. For the most current speaking fee to hire Richie Roberts, click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak directly with an experienced booking agent.
  • What topics does Richie Roberts speak about?

    Richie Roberts is a keynote speaker and industry expert whose speaking topics include Actors, Arts & Humanities, Political, Political, Producers and Directors.
  • Where does Richie Roberts travel from?

    Richie Roberts generally travels from an undisclosed location, but can be booked for private corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. For more details, please contact an AAE Booking agent.
  • Who is Richie Roberts’s agent?

    AAE Speakers Bureau has successfully booked keynote speakers like Richie Roberts for clients worldwide since 2002. As a full-service speaker booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Please click the Check Availability button above and complete the form on this page including the details of your event, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book Richie Roberts for your next private or corporate function.
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    AAE Speakers Bureau is a full-service speaker booking agency, meaning we can completely manage the speaker’s or celebrity’s engagement with your organization from the time of booking your speaker through the event’s completion. We provide all of the services you need to host Richie Roberts or any other speaker of your choice, including offer negotiation, contractual assistance, accounting and billing, and event speaker travel and logistics services. When you book a speaker with us, we manage the process of hosting a speaker for you as an extension of your team. Our goal is to give our clients peace of mind and a best-in-class service experience when booking a speaker with us.
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    If you’re looking for the best, unbiased speaker recommendations, paired with a top-notch customer service experience, you’re in the right place. At AAE Speakers Bureau, we exclusively represent the interests of our clients - professional organizations, companies, universities, and associations. We intentionally do not represent the speakers we feature or book. That is so we can present our clients with the broadest and best performing set of speaker options in the market today, and we can make these recommendations without any obligation to promote a specific speaker over another. This is why when our agents suggest a speaker for your event, you can be assured that they are of the highest quality with a history of proven success with our other clients.

Richie Roberts is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics . The estimated speaking fee range to book Richie Roberts for your event is available upon request. Richie Roberts generally travels from and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Roger Guenveur Smith, David Strathairn, Tate Donovan, Mel Gibson and Matt Damon. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Richie Roberts for an upcoming live or virtual event.

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