ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Informant, FBI informant or hidden accomplice?

Updated on August 12, 2014

Who knows what goes on in the hearts of man?

One of the most intriguing parts of our legal system is even when the courts have proof that a suspect committed a crime there also needs to be motive for a conviction. It is not enough to know that someone did something illegal, the courts also need to know why. What happens when the legal system cannot determine a motive to a crime? Mark Whitacre, an executive at an extremely powerful company, posed just that problem to the FBI in what was one of the largest and most confusing cases of the century.

Image Credit FemaleFirst

The Story

Mark Whitacre is probably best summarized as a mixture between genius and pathological liar. Through sheer genius and talent he was able to work himself up the ladder at one of the largest food manufacturing and food additive companies in the world. But once Mark Whitacre became an executive everything seemed to change.

Perhaps the pressure to deliver results was too much for him, for when he was not able to deliver key results he made up unbelievable stories of conspiracies and even blackmail to his leadership. They took his stories seriously and brought in the FBI to help investigate. While the FBI performed a cursory investigation and was ready to close the case for lack of evidence, Mark came out to the FBI and started to offer unbelievable information on the most extensive and egregious price fixing rackets in history. This began a multi-year rollercoaster investigation where Mark went from eager and willing FBI informant recording hundreds of meetings, to reluctant and fearful co-conspirator, to delusional corporate traitor expecting to be rewarded by being made CEO once former one was arrested, and finally to suspect and accomplice in theft of millions of dollars.

Even today there is still confusion on Mark’s true motives not to mention his actions surrounding his theft of millions of dollars. One thing is true, it is a remarkable and fascinating story.

My overall thoughts on this book

Kurt Eichenwald does an amazing job telling a confusing story and many times technical story to a lay audience. The history of food additives is confusing (and for those who never realized what is in our food, a bit scary) with a large cast of players in many companies around the world. Leaders at some of the most respected companies in the world schemed together to milk billions of dollars from consumers of almost every food product purchased today. Reading about this will force every reader to look differently at companies they might have previously respected. A great story I recommend to everyone.


Submit a Comment

No comments yet.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)