Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Joseph Menconi - French Gangster

Joseph Menconi is a Corsican gangster currently serving a long prison sentence but his record and reputation puts firmly in the top echelons of French crime.  There is no "Two Way Stretch/Wrong Arm of The Law" Sellers/Cribbins/Jeffries comic Underworld that some people like to favour, with this man.  The ability to carry out armed hold-ups gains you a reputation quickly, in the Underworld, and Menconi arrived with a bang in 1991, with a bank robbery.  Unfortunately for him, he was apprehended but was blessed with a mere five years prison time.  As it is with criminals, did he go straight when released?  Did he hell?  it was straight back into heavy crime and an assault on an armoured car in 1997, in Nice.  But soon after, he committed murder, killing a soldier who was trying to get too friendly with his girlfriend.  Back to jail he went on remand but escaped soon after, joining forces with another Corsican villain.  They hit another armoured car on December 26th 2000, getting away with the equivalent of 6.3 million Euros.

    Never one to shy away from conflict, he was thought to have been involved in a number of bloody Underworld feuds.  He has a particular penchant for escaping from prisons.  In 2003, he actually managed to escape from solitary confinement, and then, to add insult to injury, he simply walked out of the prison gate whilst other inmates created a disturbance.  He was recaptured just over three weeks later.  Reminds you of that scene in "Midnight Express" when Billy Hayes is seen to walk out of the prison gate dressed as a guard, except it never actually happened like that.