Cox developed the fact that Murray, like many prominent men in boxing, was a friend of Frankie Carbo, the sinister underworld figure. Yes, he had met Mr. Carbo "socially" many times, Murray said, and liked him very much. Another Murray friend was Mobster Mickey Cohen, and still another was Gambler Dave Kessell, who was run out of town by police when he and Murray visited Los Angeles.
But the best friend of all was Babe McCoy, the Los Angeles matchmaker and ex-convict fixer. What he and Murray had in common, mostly, was Willie Ginsberg. Ginsberg had previously disclosed only the vaguest connection with boxing. A sort of hanger-on, he thought you might call him. On the other hand, there were indications that he might better be called a "bag man" for McCoy. And, through Murray's testimony about Ginsberg, the name of Blinky Palermo, manager of Welterweight Champion Johnny Saxton, came into the investigation, as it comes into so many.
HARD TO BELIEVE
Ginsberg had testified that Murray paid him $896 for driving Ike Williams, a Palermo fighter, around to radio stations for a couple of days. Would Murray regard this as a reasonable sum for such services, Cox inquired. "I sure wouldn't," Murray replied, "but, Mr. Cox, if I could sit down with you—off the record—I could tell you a lot about the fight game.
"It's hard to believe, I know," he continued, "but Crazy Blinky Palermo—that's what we call him—asked me to give Willie a percentage of the show because he liked Willie."
He had laid out, he remembered under prodding, $117.74 to buy Willie "some hats and ties."
"Everybody," he explained easily, "likes hats when someone else is paying for them."
That was the brightest remark of the week. It was, as stated before, quite a week in boxing—in California, in New York, in Pennsylvania and in Illinois.