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Saturday, 8 September, 2001, 15:23 GMT 16:23 UK
DNA boost in Hoffa hunt
James P Hoffa: "The family seek closure"
Modern forensic tests may solve the 26-year-old mystery disappearance of legendary former US union chief Jimmy Hoffa.

Jimmy Hoffa: Victim of mob hit?
A DNA examination has reportedly matched his DNA with a strand of hair found in a car that a longtime friend was driving the day he vanished.

Charles "Chuckie" O'Brien has always maintained that his friend Hoffa, leader of the Teamsters truckers' union, was never in the car.

Now Hoffa's son, James Hoffa, who is now Teamsters president, hopes that the DNA match might provide investigators a break in the case.

'Mafia' link

FBI scientists matched DNA from hair taken from Hoffa's brush with the hair found in O'Brien's car, the Detroit News reported, citing two unidentified sources.

The FBI refused to confirm the claim, but said the case "is still open, it's still being worked, we're going back at it constantly and following up on leads".

Mr O'Brien's lawyer said his client denies any involvement in Hoffa's disappearance "as he has over the last 26 years".

"Hopefully, through DNA, we now have a breakthrough

Son James P Hoffa
Widespread speculation has surrounded the disappearance of Hoffa, 62, in Detroit in 1975.

Investigators believe Hoffa, who led the Teamsters from 1957 to 1967, may have been the victim of an underground feud.

He is reported to have fallen out with several organised crime figures after he was convicted of jury tampering and fraud in 1967.

Jury tampering

After his release from prison in 1971, and shortly before his disappearance, Hoffa had been trying to regain control of the Teamsters.

On the day he vanished, he was supposed to be going to a meeting at a restaurant with reputed Mafia figure Anthony "Tony Jack" Giacalone and New Jersey Teamsters boss and underworld associate Anthony Provenzano.

Investigators and Hoffa family members believe that Mr O'Brien, who had been taken in by Hoffa as a child, was one of the few people who could have persuaded him to get into the car.

One notable rumour is that his remains were buried in the foundations of the Giants football stadium in New York.

James P. Hoffa said: "We should now bring to justice those people who are responsible for my father's disappearance.

"The family seeks closure on this important issue which has torn our family apart.

"Hopefully, this will lead to a speedy prosecution."

See also:

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