Friday, 23 November 2012

People Not Fitting Their Image

Today I put an account about a man spoken of as some kind of hero, when the truth of the matter is the complete opposite of what is spoken of.  This man was given a "Heroic" image by that hero of the Prison system, Michael Peterson, or Bronson, as he is better known as.  The man in question Peterson refers to as a "Top Legend" & "Proper Hardman."  Of course in Ellesmere Port, this has produced howls of laughter. The man in question has a notorious reputation as a police informer, and has been hammered many times over the years, by the real tough nuts of the town.

    What can drive the police to speak up for a well-known hooligan & troublemaker?  Why do crimes committed by him suddenly cease to be crimes?  Why do they go to such lengths to protect him?  Why can he beat a man half to death with a baseball bat and the cowards in uniform refuse to arrest him for three days?  Why can he threaten a woman with a knife and a uniform turns up and basically intimidates her?  I can go on and on about this "Top Legend" but now I diversify into the "Proper Hardman" claim.  One day, this "Top Legend" wanted to attack my elderly father but before he could try anything, he spotted one of my elder brothers, who is the hardman in my family.  This "Proper Hardman" suddenly decided not to do anything.  No weapons, no Police protectors, all of a sudden, his bottle went.  One day, my brother-in-law stopped his truck, jumped out and confronted this "Top Legend" who did not have any weapons and no coppers to threaten for him, his response was to COWER!

    The elder brother of my B-I-L had once had a go at the "Top Legend" whom was begged not to beat him up!  Mick walked away in disgust at this so-called "Hardman."  The next time they clashed, Mick hit him and put him down, he stood back, let him get up and then promptly put him down again, where he chose to stay.  Mick did years later, get a grip of this "Legend" and warned him that if he ever went near my father again, he was going to put him in the ground.  No need to guess how he responded to that.  The eldest brother, Bill, has hammered this "Hardman" more than ten times, over the years.  He once growled at him in a chippie and this "Legend" literally ran out!  How did Bill react to this claim about the "Legend?"

    "He`s no fucking legend & he`s not even a hardman.  Does this man (Bronson) mention John Ackers?"  "No," I said, "Not even Terry Swan."  "Well," Bill said, "You can forget about anything he says.  HE KNOWS NOTHING.  When you talk about hardmen in this town, you START with John Ackers."  A real hard nut hammered the "Legend" all over a pub carpark after this hooligan made threats to this man and his father.  No reason.  Just because of the reputations they had.  Another very seriously hard man put him in hospital, after him and some of his mates wanted to jump this tough nut, and then the "legend" getting the opportunity to put a knife into him.  This "Legend" is also the most notorious knife merchant in the Port, yet for years he has walked around unmolested by the Police, most of the time he is tooled up.  However, this tough nut was prosecuted for putting the "Legend" in hospital.  No doubt the Police believed every lie from their top grass.  Somebody having the audacity to really harm their top man.  We cannot have that, can we?

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Snapped - Women Who Kill

An interesting series on the Crime & Investigation Network is "Snapped - Women who Kill."  Most episodes feature the usual motives of getting rid of the husband simply to get their hands on the spouse`s life insurance.  Having a loving husband is not enough for some women and they obviously view a working man as not rich enough for they want a lavish lifestyle. Other women seem to have tired of the man in their life and instead of ending the relationship, it is much easier to kill them or have them killed.

    It beggars belief the lengths they will go to, and the bare-faced lies they tell to the documentary makers.  Even their lawyers come up with unbelievable excuses and manage to say them with a straight face.  One woman tried to recover a murder weapon, a gun, from a large pond, and was covertly filmed by the Police, who had already found the weapon.  Subterfuge was used to get her to try and recover it, to prevent the Police from pointing the finger at her, and she walked right into a sting operation.  Even in court, she came up with an excuse that she heard that it was in the pond and she wanted to recover it, to help the Police.  She spent her time actually in the pond, using a stick to try and find it, completely in the area of the pond that she had dumped it.  All caught on camera.

    One case that really sticks out for sheer greed was an arson that claimed the life of a man.  The Fire Chief could not find any trace of arson, so the cops brought in a highly experienced Fire Investigator who had incidentally written SIX books on arson investigation.  He discovered two fire start points, one effectively cutting off the victim`s escape.  His evidence sealed her fate despite all claims that she was a victim of the Police and the Fire Investigator.  What the dead man did not know was the number of different life insurance policies that his wife had taken out on him.  Within hours of the blaze, she was on the phone to them asking for payment on the policies.  One company asked her about how he had died; she replied that he was probably still smouldering.  Boys beware!

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Louis Theroux Law & Disorder

The new programme hosted by Louis Theroux in which he travels to the hotspots of the world.  In his first show, Louis travelled to Philadelphia, going out on patrol with the cops, and talking to the people they deal with.  One little area drug lord did not fit the Hollywood stereotype.  Apart from the obligatory expensive chains, he was fat, heavily tattooed, and did not look anything remotely like a casting couch extra.  It was alleged that he was responsible for two murders, but the cops could not anything as they continually ran into a wall of silence and obvious fear.  Louis  asked him how he made a living. "I am a property developer" he grandly announced, though it was difficult to see just who would have been interested in any properties in this run-down area. He also claimed to make money by selling cars!

    Louis was out on patrol with a detective, and the cop was talking as he drove, when suddenly a young guy was in front of him.  The lad had what looked like a gun tucked into his waistband.  "Don`t fucking move!" he screamed repeatedly as he jumped out of the car, as he and his partner wrestled the lad to the floor.  The gun turned out to be an imitation.  "You stupid motherfucker!" he screamed at the lad.  "I could have shot you you stupid fuck!"  They took the lad`s details and let him go.  At another incident, a crowd gathered and started arguing with the cops.  Suddenly a squad car roared up and two huge, veteran cops climbed out brandishing big clubs.  The crowd quickly dispersed.

    This cop introduced Louis to the victim of a shooting.  A drug pusher shot a woman, then shot her sister and best friend dead.  The first victim was left for dead, but survived, despite being critically wounded.  The gunman was arrested and is awaiting trial.  Louis asked the girl if she is going to testify in court.  She said she was because of her injuries, the guy also killed her sister and best friend, and she was not going to let him get away with it.  

    It was very eye-opening and is probably a blueprint for what is down the line for us over here.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Who Killed Clara Cropper?

A murder case that I am interested in, happened in my home town of Ellesmere Port, in July 1948.  The victim was forty four year old Clara Cropper, a mother of two grown daughters, but separated from her husband.  Originally from Hull, Mrs Cropper had lived in the town for a number of years.  The tale started when she met a sailor from Norway, Olaf Andreas Flaathe.  She had a drink with him in a local pub, The Canal Inn, known locally as The Boathouse.  With her was a friend Edith Gill, and after buying some bottles of beer, they went back to the home of Edith Gill. 

    Whilst they were there, a man came to the door and had a violent argument with Mrs Gill.  A neighbour intervened and led the man away.  Mrs Cropper and Flaathe left the house through the back door.  This was witnessed by a neighbour.  However, after subsequent events, this was denied by Flaathe.  Some time later, a man walking home passed a man standing near a woman, who lay unmoving and whose clothes were in disarray.  This witness later identified the man as Flaathe, but this evidence was strongly countered by his defence barrister.  Mrs Cropper was reported missing by her daughters, and Police had full co-operation from Flaathe, whose ship was still berthed at the Bowaters Paper Mill.  

    Six weeks later, two young lads looking for scrap metal, found her decomposed body near the Shropshire Union Canal.  The Police went looking for Flaathe again, whose ship was moored by now, in Gravesend, and arrested Flaathe.  The Chief of Police stated to the local newspaper that this was an absolutely straight forward case, and in November of 1948, Flaathe went on trial at Chester Assizes for the murder of Mrs Cropper, and a guilty verdict brought an automatic death sentence.  What the Police had not counted on was just how quickly the Jury threw the case out.  So who did kill Mrs Cropper?  I will be sharing my views with you, over time.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Triple Murder

A truly horrific triple murder occurred off Florida in the mid - 80`s.  A man by the name of Chandler was convicted for the murders of a mother and her two teenage daughters.  he had them captive on a boat, tied up, sexually assaulted them and then attached weights with rope, around their necks and then threw them overboard.  This, as you would agree, is an extremely brutal and cold-blooded act that only a psychopath or psychotic could unflinchingly execute.  However, the Police carried out a thorough and unrelenting investigation into this slaughter of a family from Detroit.

    The suspect, Chandler, was convicted and sentenced to death.  He maintained his innocence throughout his incarceration on Death Row.  His final words before his sentence was carried out were, "You`re killing an innocent man!"  His son and daughter steadfastly maintained that their father was innocent.  They even appeared on the Maury Povich show on US TV, along with the husband and father of the victims.  What is strange, is that though they stated their father was innocent, not once did they ever visit their "innocent" father!  Indeed, throughout his time in prison, he never received one visit at all!  

    Supporters of this man say, "How could he have controlled three women?"  Simple. If he had a gun, then control was not a problem.  If he had a knife, all he had to do was keep it at the throat of one woman, and the others would comply.  It is quite simple to come up with different scenarios of how they ended up bound.  What I find horrifying, is that in turn, each woman was thrown overboard with a weight attached around their necks.  No doubt in my mind, Chandler deserved to die.

Sunday, 11 November 2012


Further to my last post, the world of the OMG is vastly different from the horror stories of the 60`s and early 70`s.  These biker organisations have seriously changed the mode of operation, many are involved in serious crime.  The Big Four - Angels, Outlaws, Bandidos & Pagans are involved in serious crime, but the other clubs are not being too far behind them.  The drug trade & in particular, methamphetamine, are the mainstays of biker crime, along with bike thefts & anything else they can turn to a profit.  However, not all back patch clubs are villains, but serious bikers who want to do and live they want, without stepping over the mark into serious crime.

    Our homegrown clubs that have expanded are the Satan`s Slaves, with a number of chapters, and also The Outcasts.  The Outcasts were featured in a BBC documentary in the mid 80`s, but it has been claimed in the media that they have developed more chapters.  I once spotted in Manchester a lad with a top rocker on the back of his jacket saying "Jesus & Lords" who walked into a McDonalds and sat with some biker types.  This must have been a christian back patch club - They do exist - and this lad must have been a prospect.  The oldest established British club is The Blue Angels, formed in 1963 in Scotland and now have a couple of chapters in Yorkshire.  The first official Hells Angel chapter here, could have been the Wessex Freewheelers, chartered around 1969.

    Scandinavia had the worst biker wars, along with Canada, and another stronghold for OMGs is Germany.  The main three have a strong presence there along with numerous other clubs, such as the Gypsy Jokers, and I believe the Sons of Silence or the Mongols.  German OMGs have a long history of extreme violence, going back to the 60`s.  At the 1970 Isle of Fehmarn rock festival, the festival was marred by continuing violence from bikers, who were firing guns indiscriminately.  One roadie for Jimi Hendrix was wounded with a bullet in his leg.

    Next stop-off is Australia & New Zealand.  NZ had the fist Angel chapter outside of the USA, indeed, it was the first outside of California.  Formed in Auckland in 1961, it was many years before the other big clubs set up there.  Their own big homegrown gang is called Highway 61.  In Australia, the big three are firmly established there, with the Outlaws having a chapter in Tasmania.  The big Australian gang, The Rebels, have around 60 chapters throughout the continent.  Other mobs, in particularly in Melbourne, are the Coffin Cheaters, Satan`s Slaves, The Black Uhlans and a religious group, The God Squad, headed by John Smith.  Smith is a preacher, who conducts marriages, funerals and christenings for the biker world in Melbourne.  The Gypsy Jokers are also in OZ, and were involved in the murder of a top cop.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs

Motorcycle gangs.  The phrase conjures up images of Mongolian - like hordes of neanderthals on bikes raping and pillaging their way across the continents.  The first and most famous outbreak of these "hordes on the rampage" was a holiday weekend in the sleepy town of Hollister in 1947.  A large contingent of riders converged on the town and seemed to take over it.  The whole incident was the basis of the film "The Wild One" made in 1953 with Marlon Brando and Lee Marvin.  The film caused such a fuss in this country that it was banned until 1967.  

    In the USA, there are said to be over one thousand OMGs.  However, there evolved what became known as The Big Four.  These four clubs were The Hells Angels, The Outlaws, The Bandidos and The Pagans.  Since the 1960`s, there has been a gradual expansion of these clubs around the States, then worldwide, with the exception of the Pagans.  The Pagans operate down the East Coast.  The Angels, Bandidos and Outlaws have warred with each other over the years and with other growing clubs.  The Angels have 255 plus clubs throughout more than thirty countries.  The Outlaws and Bandidos have 210 plus.  In the British Isles the Angels have reputedly have 17 chapters, the Outlaws 28 - with 8 in the Republic of Ireland - and the Bandidos have just two, in the Channel Isles.  However, the Big Three are spread heavily over Europe and Australia.  

    Other clubs that have expanded are the Gypsy Jokers, a club with 35 chapters in the States, Scandinavia, Germany and Australia.  It is said that the Gypsy jokers were involved in the murder of a top Australian cop, Don Hancock.  The Warlocks, hailing from Florida, have around twenty chapters, with two here in East Lincolnshire.  The Sons of Silence consist of around thirty plus chapters, with one in Germany.  The most violent club to emerge over the last two decades is the Mongols.  This club hails from California, the traditional Angel stronghold, and the cause of the long running war between the two clubs.  The Angels state that only they can wear the California bottom rocker on their colours.  The Mongols ignored this and hence the war. The most infamous incident was a shootout and brawl between the clubs at a casino in Laughlin, Nevada, which left a couple of bikers dead and many more injured.  Another club with a number of chapters is known as The Galloping Gooses, based around Missouri and Kansas, I believe.
This club was formed in the 1960`s like the Bandidos, Warlocks, Gypsy Jokers and an all black club The East Bay Dragons.  The Mongols formed in 1971.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

The Savile Affair Pt 2

More and more "revelations" keep emerging about alleged abuse by celebrities.  Glitter had been arrested and questioned, Freddie Starr has been arrested twice, but as there has been no trial or charges, you cannot comment.  As we do not know the truth of the allegation against Starr, I will say that he has publicly denied the allegation and obviously has not gone running to bullshit merchant Max Clifford, so he could be an innocent man, like Matthew Kelly.  Could be.

    Now the latest exclusive is against long deceased comedy actor, Leonard Rossitter.  The headline in the Sun, is actually misleading.  Rossitter was not accused of the abuse of a teenage extra, but as witnessing it, and allegedly enjoying watching it.  The alleged victim stated that three BBC staff tried to homosexually rape him and Rossitter, next to him, was having sex with someone, then it happened again, with Rossitter allegedly enjoying the spectacle.  This happened during a BBC play made back in 1968.  Why did the victim not go to the Police?  Was everything to do with the BBC deemed "too powerful" to go to the Police?  The victim says that he decided to come forward after the storm following the revelations of Savile.  I still believe he could have reported it to the authorities and even gone to the News of The World.  They would not have hesitated to investigate.  The victim said that the BBC was a "cesspool of depravity."  I wonder how much depravity has long been carried out by rings of pedophiles.  Maybe they being ordinary people is not headline enough?

    Talking amongst friends & colleagues, it is wondered just how many of these claims are true, and how many are false.  Exaggeration of situations, twisting the truth of a situation due to the current climate, did some willing get involved with these people, or are some claims pure invention?  Let us be honest, many women and girls will do anything to be with a "Celebrity"  Their public status does make them a magnet for women.  Look at how many murderers on Death Row get love letters.  Read the boasts of film and pop stars as to how many females they have bedded.  Having said that, this most certainly does not apply to all women.  

    The allegations against Savile were supposed to be well-known, as the recent revelations about the deceased former MP Cyril Smith, were public knowledge.  I cannot help but feel undecided about Leonard Rossitter, as he died in 1984, a long time ago, yet it takes all this time for an allegation to surface, and the article does not tell of Rossitter being the assailant, despite the headline.

Awaiting New Trials

One notorious case from the U.S. that  I am waiting to hear about is the retrial of three men and a woman, in the city of Knoxville, in Tennessee.  They were convicted for the abduction, rape and horrific murder of a young couple, Chris and Channon.  The quartet were apprehended and put on trial.  It was sickening to hear the Defense lawyer give unbelievable reasons as to why the murdered couple were found in the area they were; they went looking for drugs and the girl was willing to give sex in return for drugs!  Despite this claim, he did not give a reason for the homosexual rape of the young man, and why he was sadistically beaten, had fuel poured on him and set ablaze.  The girl was gang-raped, then shoved inside a bin where she suffocated.

     During the trial, the father of the girl, was like a bomb about to explode, on hearing these claims by the Defense.  When the Jury came back in, Police stood around the father, in case he attacked the accused.  Two men and the woman were given life sentences, she - 70 years, they - no parole.  The ringleader received the Death Sentence.  however, they successfully appealed and received a ruling for a new trial.  Not hearing anything, I sent an email to the reporter who appeared in documentaries on the case.  Her name is Jamie Satterfield, a major crime reporter in East Tennessee.  She replied the next day, saying that the woman, Vanessa Coleman, has her trial on the 13th November, the others have not had a new date yet.  Miss Satterfield said that I can contact her anytime, for news on the case.  That is very good of her, and I will give an update when Iknow more.

Bradford s ` Infamous

Bradford.  The name usually brought up mental images of a city full of different cultures, most particularly, Asian.  What is not generally known, is that the first influx of people from the continent, were refugees from the Soviet Union.  This happened during the 1950`s.  So having such a completely diverse mix of cultures, it is inevitable that the dark side of these cultures emerges.  Prostitution, a profession once culturally controlled by West Indians, is now controlled by Asians.  This change is not widely known outside Bradford, as people still believed West Indians were the principal pimps, alongside their long history of involvement in drugs.  This I know through where I come from, Ellesmere Port, as numerous people I knew, thought that all pimps were West Indians.  Asians are very prominent in the drugs trade, very prominent.

    Yet when we look at the murderous side of Bradford, the most infamous are white.  The most infamous is Peter Sutcliffe, the Ripper, hailing from the Heaton area.  Suffice to say, much has been written about him, so we will by-pass him.  We then had "The Black Panther," multiple murderer and kidnapper, Donald Neilson.  He hailed from the Thornbury district, and carried out numerous burglaries and armed robberies, always alone.  He brutally shot dead three sub-postmasters during botched raids, during the night, holding them at gunpoint, in their homes above the shops.  In one attack, he cold-bloodedly shot one dead, and then almost beat his victims` wife to death with his gun.  He then kidnapped a teenage girl, Lesley Whittle, and murdered her when his plans went wrong.

    Next on the list is murderer and kidnapper Michael Sams.  He hailed from Keighley, just outside Bradford. He murdered a prostitute that he kidnapped, Julie Dart, then kidnapped an estate agent, Stephanie Slater, who survived.  Sams had tried some extortion demands, at first, against British Rail, by threatening to derail passenger trains.  This failed, so he resorted to kidnapping, ultimately leading to murder and his eventual downfall.

    Over the last couple of years, we have had two notorious cases.  One is the so-called "Crossbow Cannibal" Stephen Griffiths.  He murdered and dismembered three prostitutes, and is thought to have consumed part of one of his victims.  His last killing, he carried out in full view of CCTV, doing nothing to hide his identity.  Griffiths was an obvious narcissist, wanting his piece of "fame."  Up next, is probably the oldest convicted killer to be given a whole life tariff.  Ernest Wright was a criminal originally from the Shipley district.  He had already served a very long sentence for a gruesome murder in 1971(roundabout), down south.  His murder here, was a brutal shotgun killing of a gay man, and the attempted murder of his partner.  The Police launched a manhunt, and arrested him.  They quickly disproved the alibi he had carefully constructed for himself.  Despite his age, 68, the Judge stated that he was far too dangerous to be ever released, and imposed a whole life sentence.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Psychic Detectives PT2

Continuing my theme on what I call con-artists, is the case of the New York Zodiac.  This was a man called Heriberto Seda.  Seda had an unhealthy obsession with serial killers such as Ted Bundy and  the San Francisco Zodiac.  He had a well-thumbed book on the Zodiac by Robert Graysmith, a book regarded by some as the "definitive " book on the killer.  Well, this had drawn laughter in many quarters, as it has been shown that Graysmith used half-truths, rumours, innuendo and allegedly out-and -out lies to point the finger at the man, Arthur Allen.  There has not been one shred of evidence to indicate Allen was the killer, a claim Allen angrily denied right up to his death.

    One episode of Psychic Detectives claimed that Noreen Ranier helped solve the mystery of the NY Zodiac.  If you read all you can on the internet about the NY Zodiac, you will not see anything about her alleged role in helping the NYPD apprehend Seda.  What is mentioned is that publicity hungry psychics were offering their assistance to the Police.  Good Police work brought this killer to justice, not some conwoman claiming her "gifts" helped.


Psychic Detectives

A popular show from Court TV is Psychic Detectives, in which it is claimed that so-called psychics have helped the Police in the States "Solve hundreds of cases."  It is remarkable that these people seem to solve many more cases than the BAU in the TV series "Criminal Minds"  The current superstars of this genre are Noreen Ranier, Phil Jordan and Carol Pate.  It is amazing that their names do not appear in the case files, telling all how they were able to use their "special powers" to crack the case.  One case in particular is Florida serial killer David Gore.  Caught by diligent Police work, it was later claimed that Phil Jordan helped bring it to a conclusion.  Strange, how in a documentary giving a thorough rundown  on how Gore was apprehended, there was no mention of a psychic "being consulted."

    It is also claimed that Ranier had given a lecture at the FBI Academy.  I do not know if this is true, but I would have thought that the Bureau, which provides all the best training, all the best facilities, would give the time of day to an alleged psychic.  One claim made by these people in the States and here in the UK, is that they have helped the Police in "hundreds of cases."  The Police here certainly do not corroborate these claims and usually treat these with disdain.

    The best site to truly understand these people was "Bad Psychics" but unfortunately the site host has shut it down, due to constant abuse and indeed death threats, from these people who prey upon the lonely, bereaved and vulnerable.  This man was costing them money, because it taught the unsuspecting what the game is all about, and the tricks they use to fool and con the public out of money.