News and Press Releases


August 26, 2011

David B. Fein, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that FREDERICK B. ZACHS, 78, of West Hartford, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Janet Bond Arterton in New Haven to six months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for harboring his fugitive son, Adam Zachs, for more than 20 years.  FREDERICK ZACHS also was ordered to pay a fine in the amount of $5000.

“By helping his son, a convicted murderer, flee the country and escape justice, Mr. Zachs contributed to the suffering of the victim’s family and loved ones for more than two decades,” stated U.S. Attorney Fein.  “This prosecution would not have been possible without the dedication and persistence of the U.S. Marshals Service and the West Hartford Police, whose combined efforts demonstrate the resolve of law enforcement in the pursuit of justice.”

According to court documents and statements made in court, on August 26, 1988, Adam Zachs was convicted of first degree murder following a jury trial in Hartford Superior Court.  On October 13, 1988, he was sentenced to 60 years of imprisonment but was allowed to remain free on a $250,000 appeal bond.  When Adam Zachs failed to appear for a court hearing in June 1989, a federal warrant charging him with unlawful flight to avoid confinement was issued.  On February 2, 2011, Adam Zachs was apprehended in Leon Guanajuato, Mexico.  He was transferred from Mexico and began serving his sentence in Connecticut on June 30, 2011.

On June 8, 2011, FREDERICK ZACHS pleaded guilty to one count of harboring a fugitive.  ZACHS has admitted that, in June 1989, he assisted in Adam Zachs’ flight from justice by arranging for his son to be driven to New York in order to board a flight to Mexico and avoid serving his 60-year sentence.  When federal authorities began questioning Adam Zachs’ family members about their knowledge of his whereabouts and the circumstances of his disappearance, FREDERICK ZACHS falsely denied having any knowledge about his son’s disappearance or current whereabouts.

FREDERICK ZACHS further admitted that, over the years, he sent money to his son through at least two intermediaries.  ZACHS also stayed in touch with his son by using an intermediary in Brooklyn, New York, to receive and send letters, and by using prepaid calling cards to call from payphones in Arizona and New Jersey between February 2002 and September 2005.  

This matter was investigated by the United States Marshals Service and the West Hartford Police Department.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michael J. Gustafson.


Tom Carson
(203) 821-3722


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