All I know about RJR is what I got out of "Barbarians at the Gate". I loved the book, and the HBO movie with James Garner as Ross Johnson was hugely entertaining. What inspired me most about the book was that Johnson changed careers at age 40 and went on to huge success, though greed ultimately "done him in".
I think it was First Boston that came up with the tax gimmick, but they lost too. Henry just plain had more money. But you're right. At least the book and the movie portrayed Johnson as victim of ego/greed.
KKR did indeed take it private, then later public. The FTC thing you found (amazing!) obviously had to do with their prior Beatrice deal (which I think made them a lot more money).
It's kind of ironic. At least KKR acknowledged that their bonds were "junk". Doc's no doubt still shellshocked at how the markets turned his accretive platinum to junk.