609 Con Job

The art of the con is the art of misdirection …

Summary: A convicted criminal may hold the answers to an FBI investigation into a diamond theft

Original air date: November 20, 2009 (US)

Written by: Don McGill

Directed by: Ralph Hemecker

Opening numbers:

3: Gunmen
16: Million dollars
26: Hostages
1: Con


Family Concepts: (character development)

  • Amita suggests Costa Rica as a honeymoon destination.  Charlie is against the idea.

Episode Quotes:

  • John Buckley: The Librarian wants his desk back.  Wait ’til he finds out I deleted all of his porn.
  • John Buckley: Next you’re gonna tell me you have another member of the family who’s an astronomer sending you satellite images.
    Alan: He’s on sabbatical
  • John Buckley: You’re brother, he really doesn’t like me.
    Charlie: It takes him awhile to warm up to people.
    John Buckley: Is that what it is?
    Charlie: No.

Episode Synopsis:

Don and David are investigating what appears to be a copy cat crime of a bus hijacking.  The hijackers made off with sixteen million dollars and followed a plan very similar to the plan John Buckley used the previous year (Jacked).  They visit Buckley in jail who informs Don he wants a new deal before telling the FBI anything.  Don refuses and Buckley returns to his cell.  Before he leaves, Buckley tells Don the hijackers aren’t done and they will be coming to LA next and will probably rob a jewelry store.  As predicted, the hijackers break into the LA Minerals and Metal Exchange, taking twenty-six people hostage in the process.

While at the scene, Don receives a call from Buckley who’s been watching the news.  Buckley tells Don the SWAT team is getting too close to the Exchange doors which are probably wired with bombs.  The bomb squad checks the doors and they do find several bombs wired into the power system for the building.  Don orders the SWAT team back and also tell Liz and David to go get Buckley as he apparently knows more than he’s saying.

Buckley arrives and informs the FBI the man in charge is named Len Maddux.  Buckley and Maddux served time together and Buckley admits telling Maddux about his past cons and successes.  Maddux meanwhile has demanded the FBI deliver food for the hostages from a local fast food restaurant.  Buckley tells Don Maddux and his men are conning the FBI, and to make sure they don’t take Maddux at his word.  As an example, Buckley tells Don if Maddux gives the FBI more time to get a plane, that is an indication Maddux has another plan for escaping.  When Don talks to Maddux, Don states the plane will take more time and Maddux easily gives the FBI another hour.

The food is delivered and the delivery men along with their police escort are allowed to leave the building.  Meanwhile the Bomb Squad is able to find a few doors that appear to have dummy bombs instead of live explosives. The FBI infiltrates the building only to discover the men holding the hostages are themselves hostages and Maddux and his men left the building disguised as the delivery men.  While Don is talking to the hostages, shots are fired outside and Buckley is taken by Maddux.

Buckley is able to call Don on a cell phone from the trunk of a car.  Don is convinced Buckley engineered the whole crime as a way to escape from prison.  Buckley convinces Don he was really shot and really forced to drive away from the Exchange and now Maddux was really going to kill him for giving the FBI information about the heist.  The FBI finds the car Buckley was in, but instead of finding Buckley Nikki and David find two of Maddux’s men, unconscious in the trunk.  One of them tells Liz and David Maddux took Buckley down by a river and killed him.  He also tells Liz and David the whole point of breaking into the Exchange was to gain access to their wire transfer desk; they needed a way to launder the money from the bus hijacking.

Charlie works out the money actually ended up back at the Exchange in the form of a diamond purchase.  Nikki and David stake out the Exchange and find Lola Sacco leaving the building and meeting Maddux outside.  Both are arrested and Maddux admits the plan, including the shooting was all Buckley’s idea.  Nikki figures out Lola planned to double cross Buckley out of the diamonds, but Buckley took a $240,000 payout and left Lola holding the bag.  Lola tells Nikki where to find Buckley.  When Don and David check the hotel Lola gives them, there’s nothing there except take out food and a computer.  Buckley later calls Don on the computer from Liechtenstein.