TRUST

Membership: Alex Alaric, Angela, Texas;
   
Tommy and the former warden (Jerome Gerty) of Riker's Island prison

Purpose: Destruction of organized crime

Affiliations: Punishment Squad (brainwashed agents, including Jigsaw);
    formerly employed
Nolo Contendre;
    funded and guide
VIGIL (Vigilante Infraction General Interdiction and Limitation);
   
Marcus Coriander (former pawn);
    formerly Heathen;

Enemies: Lynn Michaels, Payback (Eddie Dyson), Heathen, Punisher (Castle)

Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
    Alaric was based in Upstate New York, and Angela and Alaric later shared a home on the Hudson

First Appearance: Punisher I#1 (January, 1986)

History: The origins of the Trust are unknown. It was apparently organized with the goal of destruction of organized crime or, failing that, to takeover the mobs and process them into a force against America's other problems. Membership was made of a group of concerned citizens, including industrialists, financiers, ex-military, movie stars, journalists, etc.

(Punisher I#1) - During the Punisher's third stay in Riker's Island, the warden and his assistant, Tommy, debated on Castle's suitability to join the Trust. Uncertain whether he fit their profile, they decided to sit back and watch to see how he handled himself.  Castle's actions met their approval as he survived in prison and even saved Tommy and the warden during a breakout when Jigsaw and Don Cervello took them hostage. The warden then sent the guards away, and told Castle that they were going to allow him to escape to complete his mission of wiping out organized crime, no strings attached. The Trust also supplied Castle with a new arsenal of weaponry and restocked his battle van with the latest technology.

(Punisher I#2) - When the Kingpin faked his death, the Trust--who believed that Fisk was truly dead-- saw their chance to destroy organized crime, once and for all. Believing Castle to be responsible, Alaric sent Angela to make herself an ally and lover to the Punisher, helping him to safety after the explosion and then sharing his bed. When Castle contacted the Trust, he reached Alaric, who was to be his contact with the group.
    Alaric hired Nolo Contendre to take out a number of notable mob leaders. He successfully assassinated Bo Barrigan, "Killer" Croesus, Injun Joe, George "Georgie Porgy" Ovani. He also cut the cable on Morgan's elevator, dropping him to the ground and crippling him, though Morgan survived, unbeknownst to him.
    Another mobster, Charlie Siciliano, organized a meeting of some of the remaining mob bosses to stop what he perceived to be a gang war. This meeting--held overnight at a closed Grand Central Station--was attended by himself, Simon Ejszaka, "Joisey" Joe, Tomas Santiago, "Happy" Jack Tanner, and others. However, Nolo Contendre learned of the meeting and ambushed the mobsters, killing Joisey Joe and possibly others. The Punisher, who had also learned of the meeting, pursued Nolo Contendre into the subway station. Castle sought to learn who had hired Nolo, but the fight escalated and the hitman was killed.
    No sooner had Castle left the fight with Nolo--and begun to realize how things were escalating out of control--when Alaric had Castle's van blown up, destroying his records, his weapons, and his home. Castle contacted Alaric for assistance, who asked that he consider formally joining the Trust.

(Punisher I#3) - Alaric met with Texas, another, higher-ranking, member of the Trust, who questioned his plans. The two listened in on his discussion with Angela via the bugs in her apartment. Meanwhile, the Trust's field agents, the Punishment Squad, duped Tony Siciliano into having a conference call with the other mobsters, so that they could locate and assassinate the remaining mobsters, including Siciliano, Ejszaka, and Santiago. The Punisher learned of this and tracked down Marcus Coriander, who had trained the Punishment Squad. Castle took out seven of the Squad members and went after Coriander, who broke down and confessed his involvement. Just as Coriander mentioend Alaric's name, he was shot and killed by Angela. Revealing that she was part of the Trust, too, Anglela then shot Castle in the head and left him for dead.

(Punisher I#4) - Castle survived the glancing blow and headed back to Riker's Island. There he found Tommy dead at the hands of the Punishment Squad. He arrived at the warden's apartment just in time to save him from the Squad, but the warden killed himself after revealing Alaric's location. Cops then arrived and hauled off Castle, but they were assaulted by the Punishment Squad and the cops were forced to free the Punisher to survive.
    Meanwhile, Texas chastised Alaric for the failure of his plan: The Kingpin had clearly survived and was returning to take control of the mobs now that the competition had been weeded out. Alaric did not take kindly to being threatened in his own house, nor did he want Texas to give him a bad report to the rest of the Trust, and so he set his dog after him. Texas fled to his helicopter, but Alaric blew up the chopper as he flew away.
    The Punisher had by this time invaded Alaric's estate, and Alaric tried to convince Castle to join him one last time. When Castle refused, Alaric dropped him into one of his tanks, where he pumped gas and prepared to brainwash him into serving them.

(Punisher I#5) - Castle broke free from the tank, fought his way past the Punishment Squad, and went after Alaric. He held his own initially as Castle was weakened from recent events, but Castle soon cornered him, disarmed him, and knocked out his dog. Castle then commanded Alaric to call reporter Ben Urich and give him every fact, figure, date, and name on the Trust. Castle left Alaric to do so and headed off the estate, encountering Angela as he crossed the bridge. She tried to run him down, but he shot out the radiator grill, blinding her, so that she swerved into the guide rail. Castle left her teetering on the edge of the bridge.

BTS - Alaric apparently ascended to the head of the Trust.

(Punisher II#72, 73 - BTS) - In response to the injury of a congressman in the course of one of the Punisher's battles, the organization VIGIL (Vigilante Infraction General Interdiction and Limitation) was formed to combat such vigilantes. Unbeknownst to the government organizers, the group was secretly funded and directed by Alaric and the Trust, as part of their vendetta against the Punisher. They appointed Sternes the head of VIGIL.

(Punisher War Journal#69) - With Castle seemingly dead, Angela sent men to steal and break into his battle van, in order to obtain his War Journal, which they successfully did. With the book in hand, she plotted to write its Final Entry.

(Punisher War Journal#75) - Mulitple, varying copies of the War Journal turned up. The Trust sent both the Punishment Squad and--via Sternes--VIGIL after the journal. Members of the Punishment Squad located the journal in the hands of the man known as Blind Joe Death, but they underestimated him and he shot his way through them and escaped. At the same time, members of VIGIL, not realizing what was going on, attempted to protect the blind man from his attackers and drove off the Punishment Squad.
    After a series of struggles and exchanges, the journal (or a copy or forgery of it) was deliberately left in a pile of rubble where a VIGIL member, Einhorn, found it. No sooner had Einhorn given it to Sternes than Angela appeared and commanded him to turn it over to her, at the threat of his life. Angela found the Journal she received to be a fake, and the real one to be be held by Heathen, who dumped it at the bottom of a construction site which was to be covered in cement. He told Angela that she had been written out of the forgeries.

 (Punisher War Journal#76) - Neither Angela nor Alaric were pleased when VIGIL was shut down by the government, but they decided to move on to their other mole.

(Punisher War Journal#77) - Angela and Alaric had the trust grab their mole, justice agent Mr. Jeffries and coerce him into surrendering all of VIGIL's files on the remaining vigilantes free in New York. Shortly thereafter, Angela and Alaric were informed that a credit card owned by Lynn Michaels' father had been used to purchase a hotel room. They sent there Punishment Squad after Michaels, her father, and their ally, Eddie Dyson, Payback.

(Punisher War Journal#78) - While their targets fought their way past the Trust's agents, Heathen learned they were heading towards Penn Station and informed Angela and Alaric of this. Michaels, her father, and Dyson killed several members of the Punishment Squad that came after them, then fled into the sewers, only to be confronted by Angela and Alaric. However, Heathen then shot and killed Angela and Alaric, and allowed the three to flee, leaving New York for good.

COMMENTS: Created by Steven Grant and Mike Zeck.

The Trust could be considered Behind-the-Scenes in any story involving VIGIL.

    Alaric was not the leader of the Trust at the start of the story. I don't know who was, but he was supposed to be more of an agent of theirs. In the later stories he was running things, so perhaps he climbed the ladder.
    For that matter, the whole last story arc of the three Punisher magazines at their conclusion seemed to have a lot of actions, but not a lot of substance. It was a bunch of mysterious characters ambushing and killing each other, for no known purpose.

I'm not 100% certain that it was Nolo Contendre that took out all of the mobsters one by one...it may have just been in-fighting within the mob.

John McDonagh wrote Steven Grant about the mobsters in Punisher Volume 1. It turns out that those mobsters were seen in many places previously. Some of them already have profiles on the Appendix.
Others are:

Alaric's first name was revealed in Punisher's entry in OHOTMU A-Z HC#9.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Alaric has no known connection to:

Angela has no known connection to:

The Punishment Squad has no known connection to:

Texas has no known connection to:

Tommy has no known connection to:

 


ALEX ALARIC

    Real name uncertain, possibly Alex Alaric (per the Punisher Anniversary Magazine). He was named for the Visigoth Chieftain who sacked Rome, but then didn't know what to do with it and so he and his army rode away. He was determined not to make the same mistake as his namesake. He joined the Trust and attempted to destroy the criminal organization of New York City, but failed due to believing a false report of the Kingpin's death. In the process, he created the Punishment Squad. He slew another Trust member, Texas, when he threatened to give him a bad report to the rest of the group. The Punisher ultimately defeated him and instructed him to release info to the press about the rest of the Trust.
    Some time later, he had apparently come to head the Trust, through which he helped found and control VIGIL. Later still, he joined the search for the Punisher's war journal and sought to kill any of Castle's remaining contacts. He followed a call from Heathen to ambush Lynn Michaels and her allies, but was then killed by Heathen.
    In addition, Alaric was alleged to be the uncle of Dean Swayvrick, the Yuppunisher.

--Punisher I#2 (3-5, Punisher War Journal#76-78


ANGELA

   The apparent lover of Alaric, she had at some point in the past been rescued from Asia by Heathen.
    She was sent to earn the Punisher's affection and guide him into the Trust. When it became apparent that he would not join, she tried and failed to kill him. After Castle had defeated Alaric, she tried to run him off the road, but ended up suspended from a guide rail on a bridge.
    Surviving, she was alongside Alaric as he climbed the rungs of the Trust, formed VIGIL, and sought the Punisher's War Journal and the deaths of Castle's former allies. She was killed by Heathen.

--Punisher I#2 (3-5, Punisher War Journal#69, 75-78

 

 


MARCUS CORIANDER

 

A former small-time bookkeeper in Chicago, he was brainwashed by Alaric into joining the Trust and training the first members of the Punishment Squad. When Castle came after him, he fought his conditioning and revealed Alaric's name, but was then shot dead by Angela.

 

--Punisher I#3


PUNISHMENT SQUAD

 

A group of criminals collected by agents of Alaric and then brainwashed--via protein deprivation, electrical shock, psychoactive gas, and constant reidentification therapy--into believing they actually were the Punisher, though subject to the orders of the Trust. The initial plan was to have Castle lead the group, and when he opposed them, they even tried to brainwash him into doing so. Jigsaw served as a member of the Punishment Squad, though his conditioning broke down upon encountering the real Punisher

 

--Punisher I#2 (3-5, Punisher War Journal#75, 77, 78

 

 

 

 


TEXAS

 

A member of the Trust independent from Alaric's faction, he questioned Alaric's plan and was killed by him when he threatened to give a bad report to the rest of the Trust.

 

--Punisher I#2

 

 


TOMMY

 

Assistant to the warden at Riker's Island, he gave the warden a report on Castle and followed his orders to wait and see if he'd be a candidate for the Trust. He was held hostage by Jigsaw and Don Carlo Cervello, but was freed by Castle.
    Later he was killed by Alaric's Punishment Squad to prevent him from telling Castle the truth about Alaric's actions.

 

--Punisher I#2 (4

 


wardenJerome Gerty

The former warden at Riker's Island, he evaluated Castle as a candidate for the Trust. After being held hostage by Jigsaw and Don Carlo Cervello, and being freed by Castle, he let Castle grow and informed him of the Trust's support.
     Later he was targeted for death by Alaric's Punishment Squad to prevent him from telling Castle the truth about Alaric's actions. Castle saved him, but the warden killed himself to avoid going to his own prison.

His name can be seen around the Punisher's thumb. His last name starts with "Gerty," and his first name ends in "ome"
His full name was revealed as Jerome Gerty in Punisher's profile in OHOTMU A-Z HC#9
--Also present in the files is Andrews, Archie.

 

--Punisher I#2 (4


Appearances:
Punisher I#1-4 (January-April, 1986) - Steven Grant (writer), Mike Zeck (pencils), John Beatty (inks), Carl Potts (editor)
Punisher I#5 (May, 1986) - Steven Grant & Mary Jo Duffy (writers), Mike Vosburg (pencils), John Beatty (inks), Carl Potts (editor)
Punisher II#72-73 (November-December, 1992) - Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning (writers), Dougie Braithwaite (pencils), Jimmy Palmiotti, Mike McKenna, Al Williamson, Sean Hardy & Rodney Ramos (#73) (inks), Don Daley (editor)
Punisher War Journal#69 (August, 1994) - Steven Grant (writer), Hugh Haynes (pencils), Mick Gray, Scott Koblish & Mark McKenna (inks)
Punisher War Journal#75 (February, 1995) - Charles Dixon & Steven Grant (writers), Hugh Haynes (pencils), Don Hudson, Scott Koblish, Peter Palmiotti & Rodney Ramos (inks)
Punisher War Journal#76 (March, 1995) - Charles Dixon (writer), Melvin Rubi (pencils), Reggie Jones & Frank Percy (inks)
Punisher War Journal#77 (April, 1995) - Charles Dixon (writer), Melvin Rubi (pencils), Peter Keating, Michael Kraiger & Steve Moncuse (inks)
Punisher War Journal#78 (May, 1995) - Charles Dixon (writer), Paul Martin & Melvin Rubi (pencils), Pam Eklund, Michael Kraiger, John Lowe & Steve Moncuse (inks)


Last updated: 08/23/03.

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