Former Drug Kingpin, Ike Atkinson, Releases New DVD


Raleigh, North Carolina – In the movie “American Gangster,” Ike Atkinson appears as the minor character “Nate,” who is depicted as gangster Frank Lucas’s cousin and as the drug trafficker who helped Lucas established the Asian heroin pipeline from Thailand to the U.S. These were two of many of the Lucas’ lies exposed in the recently released. award-winning book, Sergeant Smack: The Legendary Lives and Times of Ike Atkinson, Kingpin, and His Band of Brothers by Ron Chepesiuk. This month Sergeant Smack was awarded the Best Crime Nonfiction by Books &

“‘American Gangster’ is a fairy tale told by Hollywood,” Chepesiuk said. “It should have been produced by Walt Disney.”

But now in a fascinating documentary interview, “Ike Atkinson, Kingpin– In his Own Words,” Atkinson tells own his story and further sets the record straight. The former kingpin, who operated the largest drug smuggling enterprise in the 1970s, talks about growing up in the rural south, his life in the military and as a gambler and a hustler, his rise and fall as a big time drug dealer, his relationship with Frank Lucas, the 32 years he spent in prison and his life since his release. Those who have an appreciation for the truth will want to listen closely and take note, as the real American Gangster at long last speaks out. The production’s running time is 63 minutes.

Ike Atkinson, then and now

“It has been really gratifying to get my true story told both in print and on the screen,” Atkinson revealed. “The DVD and book complement each other and provide a complete picture.”

Atkinson led a remarkable life as an adventurer, gambler and drug trafficker. He never carried a gun, never committed murder and never bowed down to the infamous Italian La Cosa Nostra. Atkinson was the first African American drug kingpin to have a DEA task force set up specifically to bring him down.

As a former U.S. Army Master Sergeant, he utilized his intellect and charm to smuggle, by conservative estimates, 1000 pounds of heroin annually from Bangkok, Thailand, through U.S. military bases into the United States from 1968 to 1975. Atkinson’s legendary enterprise was so complex and profitable, it easily rivaled that of modern day hoodlums, the Black Mafia Family.

Ike Atkinson is also the subject of the cover story for the current Don Diva magazine issue. The title of the cover story reads:”The Biggest African American Drug Dealer in History.”

On Saturday, October 16, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. EST, Ike and Ron will be signing copies of the new DVD and their book, Sergeant Smack: The Legendary Lives and Times of Ike Atkinson Kingpin, and his Band of Bothers, at Hue-Man Book Store and Café in Harlem. On Sunday, October 17, Ike Atkinson and Ron Chepesiuk will sign copies at Black Star Music and Video in Harlem from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

People in the Philadelphia area can catch Ike and Ron on October 13 at the Black and Nobel Book Store from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and at the Mill Creek Tavern from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Come to any these venues and meet and chat with Ike and Ron. For further information contact Strategic Media books at

The DVD, “Ike Atkinson, Kingpin, In His Own Words,” and “Sergeant Smack: The Legendary Lives and Times of Ike Atkinson, Kingpin, and His Band of Brothers” are available at,, and Barnes and Noble, and through local book stores.

See and hear from Ike Atkinson himself at and read about him at

For more information about Ron Chepesiuk, go to . You can also ‘friend’ both Ron Chepesiuk and Ike Atkinson on

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13 years ago

Did not get a chance to get the book,but looking forward in getting the DVD.