July 18, 2011, - 11:55 am

Former ICE Counterterrorism Agent, Army Vet on “Hell’s Kitchen”

By Debbie Schlussel

I’m not normally a fan of the FOX show, “Hell’s Kitchen,” in which chefs compete under the hyper-abusive “tutelage” of hypocritical chef Gordon Ramsay (though I do like his other shows, “Kitchen Nightmare” and “Master Chef”).  But I’ll be watching tonight and cheering on a friend and reader of this site, former Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent Brendan Heavey.  In a day and age when ICE is an emasculated, demoralized agency without a real mission, Heavey left his days as a counterterrorism agent to realize his dream of becoming a renowned chef.  He is also a proud veteran of the U.S. Army and a patriot.


Former ICE Agent Brendan Heavey Competes on “Hell’s Kitchen”

It’s an interesting transformation from fighting terrorism and drugs to working as a chef for the 31-year-old. As a U.S. Customs Service and then ICE agent based in Chicago, Brendan worked on narcotics, terrorism, money laundering, and import violations cases. He was assigned to the Narcotics unit and was the case agent for the largest all time heroin seizure in the history of the Customs Service: 56 kilos seized. He also took part in several ICE raids of illegal alien employers in 2008 and assisted ATF in their takedown of the Gangster Disciples (known as the “5-4 Crew” for their spot on 54th in Chicago).

Brendan served in the U.S. Army from 1999-2001 and was a 19K, M1A2 Armor Crewman with a rank of E-3, Private First Class. He was twice awarded the Army Medal for Military Achievement and was honorably discharged before 9/11.

After leaving ICE, Brendan attended culinary school at Le Cordon Bleu in Chicago and is now the head chef at Irish Exit in New York City. His signature dish is salmon with basil cream sauce. YUM!

Good Luck, Brendan.  We’re rooting for you.

17 Responses

Congratulations Mr. Heavey and continued success in your career!

Obviously a smart guy who saw the writing on the wall when it came to the bull at ICE/HSI (or whatever)(that sounds good on paper but in reality is an “emasculated” agency). At least now he’ll be able to develop intelligence and leads on criminal activity since he’ll be out in the field, something that the average ICE web-surfing, records printing, binder filling, going-out-to-lunch-with-the-boss, afraid-to-hit-the-streets, non-criminal investigating, Chipotle eating illegal alien processing, fake tough guy, cop wannabe “special agent” does in a career.

QTD on July 18, 2011 at 12:06 pm

Hey, congrats. From the Irish Exit website I can tell you’re doing GREAT! (Sick location btw!)

Julie on July 18, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    What I meant was, I hear most great cooks once toiled for long hours at middling midtown Irish pubs before hitting the bigtime (or mediumtime).

    Julie on July 18, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Mr. Heavy must be a glutten for punishment, if he thinks ICE is emasculating wait till Gordon Ramsey gets throuhg with him. I hope he survives for awhile atleast, Good Luck.

Koeteus on July 18, 2011 at 1:16 pm

Very good luck to you sir. As to you scum who slammed this Gentleman’s mother and the Gentleman himself: Bend Over, Sharia is coming to give it to you.

Occam's Tool on July 18, 2011 at 3:11 pm

This is Brendan’s sister. Just want to say thanks to Debbie for this writeup. I’m extremely proud of my brother for his public service AND for being on Hell’s Kitchen. Love you, bro!

Caitlin Heavey on July 18, 2011 at 3:20 pm

Ramsey’s over-priced restaurants are closing. Who is he to give advice to anyone? Of course, good luck to Brendan.

As for hostility, I don’t criticize anyone who is preparing food for me. If I don’t like it, I withold the tip and tell anyone waiting that the food is awful. However, I feel like throttling anyone who serves undercooked rice; no excuse for that. If I get a crunch, I punch.

John P on July 18, 2011 at 10:07 pm

    Your server didn’t cook your meal, so unless the service was also poor, it’s incredibly unfair to penalize him/her for the chef’s shortcomings. The chef doesn’t depend on tips; your server is.

    maatkare on July 18, 2011 at 10:53 pm

“…was the case agent for the largest all time heroin seizure in the history of the Customs Service: 56 kilos seized”

This is not true. As a U.S. Customs agent in New York in the early 1970s, I personally participated in three Heroin investigations involving much larger Heroin seizures. As Mr. Heavey was a toddler at the time, he certainly was not aware of what occurred in New York at that time but it would have been very easy for Mr. Heavey to check his facts before leaving ICE.

I am sure Mr. Heavey is a fine person but why slight your fellow workers, one of whom was killed during an investigation, in order to make yourself look good?

Jim G. on July 19, 2011 at 9:49 am

    Mr. Heavey didn’t write the blog, DS did, and she prtobably meant to say “in the history of the Chicago office”, which is certainly the case. Most large dope cases are “hand me’s” because they are usually seizures by inspectors at the sea or air ports. The fact that he took it and ran with it to get some prosecutions is an accomplishment (the laws are the same whether a port seizure or an undercover case).

    This is a record that is sure to stand for quite a while considering the poor quality of incompetant Clowns at that SAC office, don’t look for any “record” drug seizures any time soon from the web-surfing, lunch-with-the-boss, record-printing, binder-filling, fake tough guy, cop wannabe’s, and the paper-pushing,sleazy, never-worked-a-criminal-case, back-stabbing, skanky, do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do, Clown managers.

    BroMan on July 20, 2011 at 12:29 pm

Being a short-order cook or a Michelin Star restaurant head chef is a demanding profession that takes a lot of skill, multi-tasking ability, mental discipline, e.g being able to know the cooking times of multiple foods, taste combinations, spices, wines, etcetera and creativity so your restaurant will succeed and make money.

For all you Detroit-area readers,just take afew minutes and list all the once great restaurants that have vanished form the scene. It ain’t easy! Bonne Chance, Brendan.

Dennis on July 19, 2011 at 9:50 am

Oops! “…just take a few minutes and list all the once great restaurants that have vanished from…”

Dennis on July 19, 2011 at 9:53 am

This guy was fired from Customs for a lack of integrity. How ironic he was caught in a lie on a national TV show, and once again, fired. Debbie, get your facts straight. And the heroin case you reference was handed to him.

What! on July 19, 2011 at 9:18 pm

    You’ve got to be kidding, right? Integrity? It’s just a word that gets thrown around by some incompetant clown during a training session on “integrity”, and that you have to sit and listen to because although you may not respect the person, you have to respect the grade, even if they used their knee pads to get it. Funny how once an incompetant, lying and debauched clown gets promoted to a higher grade they want to hold all subordinates to a higher level, and they must have “integrity”. They don’t know what that word means other than that they now have to sit through training on “integrity”

    If “integrity” was a factor in keeping your job as an agent then there would be a lot of “people of integrity” without a job right now.

    BroMan on July 20, 2011 at 12:40 pm

gee, this guys seems like some managers we have at los angeles. debbie, check los angeles out. management selects their favorites for gs and asac positions and even some who have never taken the promotional exam that is required for the rest of us. no equipment to do the casework. goes on and on.

sacla on July 19, 2011 at 10:55 pm

Ouch! This guy sleeps with a skank on national TV, then lies about the sea bass to Ramsay’s face. I would not trust him to cook for me.

Huh? on July 20, 2011 at 8:03 am

I’m retired ICE from Dallas. Home of many sad bosses and stories. In my new life I travel to NY frequently. I’m going to try this place.

A.J. Irwin on February 21, 2012 at 12:11 am

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