Prominent Philadelphia billionaire newspaper and NBA owner Lewis Katz was among seven people killed Saturday when their private plane crashed on takeoff in Massachusetts. Katz had purchased the parent company of The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia Daily News and CNN affiliate philly.com just days before the crash. He was 72.
Katz was formerly the principal owner of the NBA’s New Jersey Nets and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils. He was a shareholder of the Nets, the New York Yankees and the YES Network at the time of his death.
Yet Katz wasn’t just a billionaire philanthropist. He was a very well-established business and political power player whose activities spanned decades, and which have been alleged to include ties to the Philadelphia and Chicago mobs. Additionally, he is reported to have been on the radar of both Russian and Israeli intelligence (MOSSAD).
He was however, a dedicated capitalist and very pro-American, traits which may have caused him to run afoul of certain powerful parties. A former U.S. intelligence operative confirmed to the Instigator News Network their belief that the U.S. government had a hand in the crash, and pointed out its similarities to the untimely demise of journalist Michael Hastings, who was working on an exposé involving the Obama administration when he died. Katz’s recent purchase of the news group may have brought him into possession of information potentially damaging to the White House; INN’s source claims that Katz was “talking to people,” and this “got him killed.”
Katz flew to Massachusetts earlier Saturday to attend a fund-raising event at the Boston-area home of historian Doris Kearns Goodwin. She said she had dinner with him Saturday evening before he left for his flight back to Atlantic City, New Jersey. An air safety investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board, said the Gulfstream IV with two pilots, one flight attendant and four passengers attempted to take off at 9:40 p.m. Saturday from Hanscom Field, about 20 miles northwest of Boston.
The plane never got airborne, however; it crashed through a chain-link fence and went down an embankment before bursting into flame.
The NTSB announced Monday that the plane’s cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder had been recovered. The FAA is investigating the crash, an aspect that is likely to be suspect given allegations arising relative to alleged government involvement in the tragedy.