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FBI comes up empty in Hoffa search

OAKLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Beneath a pool, under a horse farm, and now a weed-grown field north of Detroit. For at least the third time in a decade, FBI agents grabbed shovels and combed through dirt and mud in the search for Jimmy Hoffa’s remains or clues to the disappearance of the former Teamsters boss.

Once again, the search was futile.

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“Certainly, we’re disappointed,” Detroit FBI chief Robert Foley told reporters Wednesday as authorities wrapped up another excavation that failed to turn up anything linked to Hoffa, who has been missing since 1975.

Many think Hoffa ran afoul of the mob and was killed.

“Right now the case remains open,” Foley said. “At this point, if we do get logical leads and enough probable cause that warrant the resources to do an investigation, then we’ll continue to do so.”

The latest search for Hoffa’s remains was prompted by a tip from reputed former Mafia captain Tony Zerilli. About 40 FBI agents searched a small field surrounded by trees and a gravel road in Oakland Township. With the aid of a backhoe, they spent about 10 hours in the field on Monday and another 10 Tuesday before calling it quits about 10:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Hoffa was last seen on July 30, 1975, when he was to meet with reputed Detroit mob enforcer Anthony “Tony Jack” Giacalone and alleged New Jersey mob figure Anthony “Tony Pro” Provenzano at a restaurant in Bloomfield Township, north of Detroit. Hoffa, 62, never was seen or heard from again.

Other theories have suggested Hoffa was entombed in concrete at Giants Stadium in New Jersey, ground up and thrown in a Florida swamp, or obliterated in a mob-owned fat-rendering plant.

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