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Media Apt. Building Center of '71 FBI Burglary

Whistleblowers stole F.B.I. documents from a Media Borough office in 1971, exposing the agency, and they were never caught, NY Times reports.

The County Court Apartment Building, on Veterans Square in Media, was once the center of a burglary that exposed the FBI for spying on its own in the early 1970s.  (Credit: Courtney Elko)
The County Court Apartment Building, on Veterans Square in Media, was once the center of a burglary that exposed the FBI for spying on its own in the early 1970s. (Credit: Courtney Elko)
A Media Borough apartment building was once the center of a burglary that exposed the Federal Bureau of Investigation for spying on its own in the early 1970s.

On March 8, 1971, while many watched Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier in the boxing ring, eight burglars entered the FBI offices at 17 Veterans Square in Media and stole documents that would later expose the F.B.I.'s spying on political groups, civil rights leaders and citizens, according to a New York Times article.

One such revelation was a blackmail letter sent to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., threatening to expose his extramarital affairs if he did not commit suicide, according to the NY Times article.

The burglars sent the stolen documents to newspaper reporters and week's later Betty Medsger wrote the first article about the stolen documents and F.B.I. practices for the The Washington Post.

Medsger has now written a book about the entire heist called, "The Burglary: The Discovery of J. Edgar Hoover’s Secret F.B.I.," in which the burglars, who were never caught, are revealed.

Two of the burglars, John and Bonnie Raines, talk of their experiences and how Bonnie cased the FBI offices, at what is now the County Court Apartment building across from the Delaware County Courthouse, by posing as a Swarthmore College student in this NY Times Retro Report video

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