The role of the Supergrass took off in the seventies, with villains turning on their confederates. However, after the outcry over the Bert Smalls deal, automatic freedom was no longer an option. The next major villain to turn, was armed robber Maurice O`Mahoney. He was facing serious charges, but he claimed that his now former friends had threatened his girlfriend, so he decided to take them down. He was told to expect up to twenty years for his crimes, but in return for his evidence, he was given just five years, and this became the tariff that villains should expect.
Other villains to follow included Charlie Lowe, Jimmy Trusty & George Du Buriatte. Later on, the supergrass system was exploited to the maximum by Tony Lundy. Lundy turned people like Billy Amies, David Smith, Maxie Piggott & George Bradshaw. These were regarded as extremely unpleasant people. The judge thought it was nauseating listening to the crimes of these individuals, and then they giving evidence against others. Lundy turned a great many villains, yet one point that is always ignored by Lundys` detractors, is that nine out of every ten villains prosecuted, put their hands up in court. Innocent people do not do that.
Billy Amies was a London blagger, who operated around the country. He was involved in an extremely nasty home robbery in the North West, where violence was inflicted on a victim and a young girl was stripped and threatened with rape. Lundy turned Amies, and his appearance in the witness box caused the accused to change their pleas. They claimed that the violence and sexual threats was the work of Amies. Later, two detectives were assigned to protect Amies, and one was persuaded to venture into Liverpool with him for a drink. Amies chose to walk into The Crow`s Nest, a major Underworld pub and they were both attacked. Amies escaped with injuries, but the cop received a very serious beating, which resulted in him being invalided out of the force. It was unknown why Amies chose to go into that particular pub.
Amies was a known homosexual, but he also had a serious reputation for violence. He was stabbed by Albert Donoghue, after the Kray trial. Tony "Gang Boss" Lambrianou claimed that Donoghue stabbed Amies in Smithfield Meat Market. Donoghue said that he was driving a car with Amies in the passenger seat, who produced a potato peeler and Donoghue realised that Amies was up to something and in a struggle, he took the peeler off Amies and stabbed him with it. It was said that Amies had died, possibly from aids, but he would not be a person missed.