ATTN: WHITE KING'S BISHOP AKA THINKER
Information purportedly collected by Gotham-based vigilante/investigator Renee Montoya indicates that recently reprinted pages of the Bible of Crime, a document sacred to an Intergang-connected cult, carry encrypted information that might be of critical importance.
Like many Checkmate agents, I was drawn from civilian law enforcement. It is well-understood policy that we are to maintain no unregistered "work-related" contacts from our previous professions, but I feel urgency in relating an incident involving a former informant of mine. It should be noted that he - not I - initiated contact. I will fully document what I know of this individual in a separate communication. While I've never found him trustworthy in a broad sense, I judge this information reliable and worthy of further exploration.
He contacted me with claims of having found a small notebook with important information. His description of how it fell into his hands was confused and most likely a fabrication, but he described it as the notes of one R. Montoya and her investigation into a crime cult. We have an open file on this organization and its connection with Intergang. Their ties to incidents around the globe is well-documented, not the least of which was the research conducted at Oolong Island and the crises that sprung from there. I deemed it vital to assess this information.
THE NOTEBOOK AS FIRST PRESENTED
Our meeting place was communicated to me just minutes in advance, but the location was no surprise after reviewing what I knew of our former dealings. When we met, he took great care to protect himself with nearby armed associates (that I was polite enough to pretend not to notice). Fortunately for us, though, he took little care in protecting the information he was trying to sell. I was able to slip in and conceal three wireless cameras around our meeting place before our appointment. As I thumbed through the notebook under the pretense of evaluating the worth of the intelligence, I was able to capture several key photos of the content.
The notebook itself consisted of several pages of handwritten notes. Among the pages there were other items such as tickets, official documents and even a pair of shell casings. I thumbed through as many pages as I could without drawing suspicion. It will take some time to analyze the pages I did capture, but of most immediate interest was an excerpt from the Bible of Crime that is similar to a recently published page, albeit a slightly different translation. In it, Montoya evidently made an attempt at deciphering a numeric code around the edges of the page.
You'll recall that I recently submitted for review my personal analysis of the code and a proposed key to deciphering it. It appears that Montoya took a similar approach in decoding the numbers. While not definitive confirmation, the agreement of two investigators whose methods vary so widely is worth noting.
At the time we met, it was unclear whether my contact had shown the notebook to anyone else. However, it now appears that he has shown it to others and perhaps made additional copies in an attempt to find a buyer or buyers. I have since seen some of this material on the internet. He mentioned that he had already received a substantial bid from a news organization, but I suspect that that was another fabrication designed to create a fictitious bidding war. Having captured a substantial amount of data and knowing that Black Side was capable of obtaining this material should it prove to be legitimate, I made no offer but told him that I would need to consult with my superiors.
Given the nature of this threat, I believe that the first imperative is to evaluate current and future published excerpts for signs of impending action by the cult. In parallel, I would like to formally request your unique talents in processing the text in my image collection. Interpreting some of the writings has proven difficult given the combination of Montoya's often hasty writing and the quality of the images. Finally, if you agree with the assessment that the information is legitimate, I also request that you speak with your King about initiating an operation to retrieve the original documents for deeper analysis. Finally, given Montoya's depth of knowledge in these matters, we should review her file and determine the best way to obtain her cooperation in dealing with this cult of crime.
FROM: M OLSEN
WHITESIDE PAWN, SECTION K-4
27 NOVEMBER 2007