LONDON – British criminal Ronnie Biggs, best known for his role in the 1963 Great Train Robbery, died in a nursing home on Wednesday. He was 84.
Biggs, a working class man, was part of a gang that robbed the Glasgow to London mail train nearby Cheddington Buckinghamshire UK on August 8 1963. He and his gang made off with $US4.2 million – equivalent to $US64 million today.
Eventually Biggs and his posy were caught and carted off to jail where he was to spend the next 30 years of his life. In 1965 he escaped by climbing a prison wall with a makeshift rope ladder. He fled abroad to Brazil where he found safe-heaven because of a ‘no extradition’ law.
In 2001 Biggs voluntarily returned to the UK and turned himself in. He was in need of medical attention at that time. Biggs was hauled off to prison once more but released shortly thereafter because of failing health.
He died on Wednesday at a north London senior home, according to Reuters and the BBC.
Over the years, Biggs became a folk hero in the UK; a working man, who dared to steal from the system and got away with it, was fever catching in the 60′s when the UK was mostly comprised of the working class.
Biggs never regretted robbing that train. During a rare interview he once said:
“It has given me a little place in history,” he said. “I made good in a curious way I suppose. I became infamous. If you want to ask me if I have any regrets about being one of the train robbers, my answer is, ‘No’.”
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