Read the Full '20/20' Transcript

Informant JN-30 provided the FBI with crucial information about the murders of Charles Moore and Henry Dee. From the beginning here on Highway 84 in tiny Meadville to the murky depths of the Mississippi River some 40 miles away. According to JN-30 the killers confided in him in horrifying detail about what transpired just after the two young men were last seen near this roadside drive-in.

(VO) JN-30 said James Ford Seale picked up Charles Moore and Henry Dee. Followed by Charles Edwards and Seale's father, Clyde, in a pickup, they drove into the forest, tied the victims to a tree and beat them. Reeling a shotgun, James Seale harangued them about an imagined black Muslim plot to arm local blacks.

(OC) At that time, did you think it was possible that your brother was killed just because the color of his skin?

THOMAS MOORE

Absolutely. No other reason. No other reason.

ABC NEWS

Did you suspect that Klansmen had killed him?

THOMAS MOORE

Yes.

ABC NEWS

(VO) According to JN-30, James Seale's brother, Jack, and a prominent local landowner, Ernest Parker, put the victims into the trunk of a car and drove to a remote landing on the Mississippi River. Moore and Dee were tied to a jeep engine block and dropped into the muddy water. Six months later, Navy divers found the engine block, a skull and other evidence exactly where JN-30 told them to look. The FBI was convinced their suspects were the killers. But in 1964, Thomas Moore knew not to expect justice.

THOMAS MOORE

Did I believe that they would be arrested and convicted? No. No. ABC NEWS

No way?

THOMAS MOORE

No way.

ABC NEWS

(VO) And he was right. The FBI investigation soon hit a wall.

JIM INGRAM

We, in the FBI, felt there was sufficient evidence. But if the prosecutor is not going to move forward, that -- that stops it at the time.

ABC NEWS

(VO) The FBI file shows that with the informant too fearful to testify and a lack of other witnesses, the district attorney felt he could not prosecute the suspects. Three of them lived out their lives and died free men. The two who were arrested briefly in 1964 are still alive. According to the file during questioning, one of them, James Ford Seale, was told the FBI knew he was involved in the murders. Seale replied: 'Yes, but I'm not going to admit it. You are going to have to prove it.'

MAN

Hello. Mr. Seale?

JAMES SEALE

Yeah.

MAN

How you doing?

JAMES SEALE Pretty good.

ABC NEWS

(VO) Today, James Seale travels the country in his luxury motor home. We found him camped near Natchez.

JAMES SEALE

I have nothing to say to you.

MAN

Nothing to say? JAMES SEALE

The best thing for you to do is get your ass up that hill.

MAN

All right, sir. All right. Did you have anything to do with the killing of those two boys?

JAMES SEALE

Get up the hill.

ABC NEWS

(VO) According to the FBI file, when he was under arrest, Charles Marcus Edwards confessed that he, Seale and others took the victims to some woods and whipped them. But he said they were still alive when he left. We found Edwards last year living quietly in the country outside Natchez.

(OC) Did you murder Henry Dee and Charles Moore?

CHARLES EDWARDS

I did not. I did not murder those two kids.

ABC NEWS

The investigators said that you told them that you and a couple of other guys picked up Henry Dee and Charles Moore, took them to the forest…

CHARLES EDWARDS

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