Exclusive: Inside Playboy founder Hugh Hefner’s hard-partying 1970s-era world

The Business Insider obtained an exclusive interview with Mr. Spingola that also included a look inside the highlights of the book he has written with Rolling Stone’s U.S. Editor Brian Hiatt: “Black Market Economy:…

The Business Insider obtained an exclusive interview with Mr. Spingola that also included a look inside the highlights of the book he has written with Rolling Stone’s U.S. Editor Brian Hiatt: “Black Market Economy: Billions of Dollars and Billions in Sexual Incest, Misogyny, and Mayhem in Little Rock.”

Both Mr. Spingola and his friends thought that he was this really charismatic soul,” said Mr. Hiatt. “If we had let it go—if we had known that Richard was also the chairman of a prostitution ring with a clandestine, no-tax rate, with bodies stuffed in ice in shipping containers, and with all kinds of illegal drug activity—the world would have known about all of that. But since we didn’t, our lives were changed.”

When President Obama came to town in 2014, his schedule was crowded with top donors, and the president saw Mr. Spingola, who had long gone by the moniker “Checky” and became one of the president’s most beloved guests. “He wrote the president a note on his notes saying, ‘In the name of Love and Heart, I apologize for not being able to show up in person for your speech. I don’t believe in small little things like that,’” said Mr. Spingola. “‘Most of us wouldn’t show up to make a big speech if we believed we could not support you—but we can support you.’”

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