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Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber: The True Story of Leslie Ibsen Rogge, One of the FBI's Most Elusive Criminals [Kindle Edition]

Dane Batty
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Winner Biography Pinnacle Book Awards

Finalist in Reader Views Book of the Year Awards
Finalist in Next Generation Indie Book Awards 2011
Finalist in True Crime Book Reviews Book of the Year

What do you think of when you hear about someone on the FBI's Most Wanted List? Hardened criminals, without morals or any sense of right and wrong, ready to solve a dispute with a gun, right? But what if things weren't that cut and dried? What if the nice guy you hired to hook up your cable was Number Seven on the FBI's list? Les Rogge looks and acts just like your next-door neighbor. Yet in twenty years he may have robbed more banks than Jesse James and Bonnie and Clyde put together--without firing a shot. Caught and put in jail twice, he escaped--and went sailing around the Caribbean with his wife and dog! In Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber: The True Story of Leslie Ibsen Rogge, One of the FBI's Most Elusive Criminals, Les details his adventures from Alaska to Antigua, the Chesapeake to Cancn, in everything from a converted shrimp boat at an abandoned marina to an R.V. at a Mayan ruin--and hundreds of vehicles and venues in between. But it all came to a halt when a fourteen-year-old in Guatemala forced him to turn himself in. Few felons have been as forthcoming about their successes, failures, robbery techniques, passion for sailing vessels... and love for his wife.

Editorial Reviews


Les Rogge is an island in the stream of spell binding ultimates, a place where wild men playfully challenge the system, a place where desperado winds swirl a thousand lifetimes into a breeze.
--George Jung, subject of book and movie "Blow"

From the Author

Reader Views Literary Award Finalist for 2010

Product Details

  • File Size: 303 KB
  • Print Length: 219 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0615268455
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Nish Publishing Company; 1st edition (June 30, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #537,497 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting and then some June 20, 2010
This is the kind of true crime story that you seldom get to read since it is essentially written by the perp himself, and perps usually don't bother putting their tale to print because convicted felons by law can't benefit financially from their stories.

I say "essentially" since onetime top ten most wanted criminal, "gentleman" bank robber Leslie Ibsen Rogge's writings have been organized, edited and annotated by his--let's face it--adoring nephew Dane Batty. Batty writes an intro, and comes on page from time to time to give some information or to set a scene amidst the fascinating narrative written by Rogge. I read the book in two settings. More devoted true crime readers will stay up until two in the morning and do it in one setting!

So here we have a guy who has several gifts. Obviously he has the gift of gab and is really a first class con artist as he proves again and again by talking people into doing things they normally would never do. Rogge is especially good at negotiating "deals" with cars, boats, house trailers--anything that can be traded or resold. He talks one idiot into helping him escape for a promise of $50,000 that Rogge says he has buried in California and will send to him (right). He talks his way across borders and out of scrapes and into the hearts of strangers. But he saves his best spiel for bank managers--always female, by the way, since Rogge realized (correctly) that they are less likely to feel the urge to play hero and try to stop the robbery in progress. His MO was to call ahead and arrange a meeting with the bank manager. He would arrive in a nice neat suit and tie with a fancy briefcase, sit down, take out a robbery note and hand it to the manager.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
In two days, a breath of fresh air is hitting the true crime book shelves in the form of debut author Dane Batty's Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber: The True Story of Leslie Ibsen Rogge, One of the FBI's Most Elusive Criminals.

Batty has spent a great deal of time promoting his book and I'd been keeping a watch on other's reviews, thinking it was a story I was interested in. So when Batty offered to send me an advanced reader's copy for review, I willingly accepted.

But you never know what you're going to get with first time authors. Often they have an excellent story to tell, just not much of a knack for telling it.

That is NOT the case here.

Batty doesn't actually tell Leslie Rogge's story; he has an inside scoop since Rogge is his maternal uncle.

Rogge tells his own story with a few commentaries from Batty thrown in for a relative's point-of-view.

And, let me tell you, Rogge may be a guy who stole an estimated $2 million in his career as a bank robber, but the guy sure knows how to tell a story.

Rogge skips all the childhood memories and delves right into his days of ripping off banks in a very gentlemanly fashion.

He never used violence to get the cash. His crimes involved no high speed chases.

No, they were about as lax as you're going to see with this serious of a crime.

When Rogge wasn't "sticking it to the man," he was sailing the world with his wife, Judy - who at first was oblivious to Rogge's source of income.

Written by Rogge as if he was talking directly to you, readers are invited to hear about his travels, his misdeeds, and a view into life on the lam.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
"Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber" carries a subtitle so long it almost announces that the book is self-published: "The True Story of Leslie Ibsen Rogge, One of the FBI's Most Elusive Criminals."

And while most of it is written by the bank robber himself, the nominal author is not a professional writer --- he's Dane Batty, Rogge's much younger, totally adoring nephew.

The book had, in short, all the ingredients for a self-serving adventure story that just happened to fudge the morality of a life story that has the protagonist robbing around 30 banks for a score of about $2 million.

Wrong. "Wanted" is, simply, a blast: funny, self-aware, amazingly informative about bank robbery, boats, cars, planes and --- far from least --- human nature.

Best of all, there's not an apologetic line in it. Oh, sure, Leslie Rogge might have taken his considerable talents and put them to a use that was of benefit to Society --- but the thing is, he was pretty much born for the life of crime.

"A job?" Hunter Thompson wrote. "But how would I make any money?"

That could have been Leslie Rogge's motto.

Want a deep psychological dive into his childhood? Forget it. Rogge stole his first car at 13. In high school, he swiped his father's credit cards and an under-aged girl. The judge said, "I'll give you four choices --- now pick a service." He chose the Navy. "For the boats."

Remember the '67 Cadillac Eldorado? Guys wanted them so badly they were willing to pay a premium. Rugge managed to find several. Soon, he says, he was making $30-35,000 a week. Okay, so he did some time for transporting stolen vehicles and his wife fled with the kids --- his second wife would have a better sense of humor.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent story and I read it in 1 day, very good
Published 3 months ago by Kevin Fitz
5.0 out of 5 stars THE MAN THE FBI COULDN'T CATCH
I had a great time reading this book. This is the story of Leslie (Les) Rogge, a man who robbed many, many banks - improving his system as he went. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Traveling Hobo
4.0 out of 5 stars fun story. Adventurous. For the traveler.
I really enjoyed this book. Dane wrote a very good book about the exploits of Les. Les gets to tell his story in his own words. He had a very adventurous life. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Jesse Moore
4.0 out of 5 stars I liked this story a lot
A great read. And a timely piece. I think more than a few of us would rather see a bank get robbed than the other way around. The story was concise and well written. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Frances Gallagher
3.0 out of 5 stars Holes In Storyline
Kudos for the nephew's attempt to chronologically track the odyssey of his uncle's wild bank robbery sprees. Read more
Published on December 26, 2012 by CULLEN DORN
4.0 out of 5 stars Struck by Rogge's apparent lack of remorse, like the typical criminal,...
"Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber" reads like a criminal travelogue. Leslie Isben Rogge robbed banks for twenty years and was on the FBI's top ten most wanted list. Read more
Published on July 15, 2012 by Barbara S. Reeves
5.0 out of 5 stars Wanted: A great true-crime novel
This is a great book that I would recommend for anyone who wants to read a "can't put it down" true crime book. It's enthralling and entertaining. Read more
Published on April 24, 2012 by Patricia Faulhaber
4.0 out of 5 stars You can't help but like this bank robber!
This is the story of Leslie Rogge, the uncle of the author, who robbed many banks during his criminal career and evaded the FBI for many years. Read more
Published on March 8, 2012 by JudithAnn
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read
I enjoyed this book. It's hard to write a review of a non-fiction book, because it feels like you're reviewing someone's life. Read more
Published on January 30, 2012 by Bunny Cates
5.0 out of 5 stars We love true crime stories
Author of How to Interview Like A Pro: Forty-Three Rules for Getting Your Next Job

Why do we love true crime stories so much? Read more
Published on January 28, 2012 by mary greenwood
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More About the Author

I am a technical writer, biographer and designer and hold an MBA from George Fox University and live near Portland, Oregon with my family.

Regarding my first book 'Wanted: Gentleman Bank Robber: The True Story of Leslie Ibsen Rogge, One of the FBI's Most Elusive Criminals, the writing of Les's story officially started for me in 2000. Les is my uncle and he would send the family short stories from time to time since he was sent to prison in 1996. These short stories were fantastic. They were funny, adventurous, exciting and best of all true. None of these stories are reconstructed, and most of the banks have been qualified by countless court documents, testimonials, newspaper articles and media television shows. Prior to 2000 Les sent these stories to my mother. I grew up hearing these incredible stories, so I wanted to document these letters, put them in writing and make them available for future generations. I knew that there was a book here from the beginning, only later did I realize that I should share it with the world.

Regarding my second book 'Heist and High', Anthony Curcio was handed my first book while in prison with George Jung, and Anthony wrote me his story and the rest is now history. Anthony's story is incredible, crazy, sad, loving and uplifting, and he proves you can literally hit bottom and come all the way back to life.

Hope you enjoy...

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