John Gregory is caught in a trap when his mobster brother escapes and wants the money he put in a trust fund for his daughter. At the same time the manager of the trust fund tries to blackmail Gregory about it and is murdered.
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When mobster Stefan 'Big Steve' Jahnchek escapes from custody during a Congressional hearing, he heads straight to Los Angeles and commercial fisherman John Gregory. He wants false papers, transportation to Mexico, and money from Gregory. Before going into prison nearly 20 years before, Big Steve had entrusted his newborn daughter Helen and a large sum of money to his brother Gregory for safekeeping. Now he wants both of them back as the daughter must sign for the money which is his real interest. Gregory had adopted the daughter as Jahnchek has never seen her plus she is now engaged to a senator. Gregory also finds himself being blackmailed by Franz Moray, a retired Swiss bank official. Gregory has bad news for Big Steve about his daughter and his own money is in escrow pending the completion of a business deal. When Moray is found dead, Gregory is charged with murder and Perry Mason defends him. Written by
This is one of three Perry Mason episodes featuring R.G. Armstrong, seen here as central character John Gregory. His 182 title imdb filmography includes guest shots on nearly every Western TV series of the 1950s and 60s, with multiple appearances on Gunsmoke, Bonanza and Wagon Train. His other TV credits count among them recurring roles on T.H.E. Cat and Dynasty, as well as Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color and The Doris Day Show. Armstrong's dozens of film portrayals run the gamut from classy Warren Beatty projects like Reds and Dick Tracy (in which he played "Pruneface") to low end horror clunkers like The Car and The Beast Within. See more »
This episode has all the qualities you expect from a 'Perry Mason' show. Good script, interesting characters and a mystery that is entertaining. Made for an enjoyable 52 minutes of viewing pleasure.
It starts off rather strange when Stefan 'Big Steve' Jahnchek has been let out of prison to testify before congress on mob activities. But during a break in the action, Big Steve is able to escape and makes his way to the LA area.
He wants to get in touch with a local fisherman named John Gregory. Big Steve had a baby daughter and John had agreed to care for the baby while Big Steve was imprisoned. Big John had even set us a trust fund for his daughter Helen that included thousands of dollars when she reached the age of 21.
However John tells Big Steve that his child died in an automobile accident which did not seem to bother the convict. All Big Steve is wanting is the thousands of dollars that was in the fund.
John also had trouble from a retired Swiss bank employee that was blackmailing for some secret that John wanted kept quiet. But when the bank employee ends up dead on John's boat all evidence points to John being the killer.
Perry will defend John in court which will produce some interesting results. Inside the courtroom we learn that all may not be what they seem. People identity will be discovered and people's true friendship will be tested. By the time the proceeding end we have learned more secrets than people in the script.
An excellent mystery.
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