Britain’s Underworld TV - Graham Johnson - Michael Showers - Charlie Siega - Stephen French - Albert Kirby - Mike Malloy - Ross Kemp on Gangs TV - Liverpool gangsta - Gangs of Britain TV - The Real Narcos UK TV - Going Off Big Time 2000 - Liverpool Narcos TV - Panorama TV - Drug Lords: The Takedown TV -
The is Liverpool gangsta Curtis ‘Cocky’ Warren. He is the first and only drug trafficker to appear on the list of Britain’s richest people. Some estimate his fortune as high as £300 million. And Warren isn’t the only Liverpool villain to have made millions from crime. Britain’s Underworld: Liverpool, National Geographic 2010
Showers was establishing himself as an armed robber. But he would go down in criminal history for a different reason ... By 1970 Showers was an armed robber with a growing sideline in Cannabis dealing. He was also an increasingly big figure in Toxteth and prepared to use violence to maintain his reputation ... By going to Africa and importing Cannabis direct he dramatically increased the supply of drugs. ibid.
Dock theft had a long history in Liverpool. In many ways it was the City’s signature crime. And it was a world away from cutting-edge bank jobs. ibid.
Charlie Seiga needed little encouragement. He began robbing the country houses of north Wales of their antiques. ibid.
On 3rd July 1981 the Toxteth district erupted into an orgy of violence. It was the worst public disorder Britain had witnessed that century. And young robber Stephen French was at the heart of it. For three days the authorities lost all control over Toxteth. Estimates suggest up to 1,000 police officers were injured. And as many as 140 buildings destroyed. ibid.
Yet the hard drugs revolution on Merseyside would not come from Toxteth but the other side of the Mersey. And it caught everyone by surprise ... Career villain Charlie Seiga watched many of his peers dive headlong into the gold-rush. One man who seized the opportunity was Tommy Comerford. The so-called mastermind of the Water Street Bank Robbery. Comerford starting importing a whole range of drugs from heroin to LSD, and became the first British criminal to forge links with most of the world’s drugs regions. It made him a fortune, but Comerford still lived in a council flat. ibid.
In the wake of the Toxteth riots Michael Showers turned himself into a community spokesman, meeting politicians and appearing on TV debates ... Showers was still importing drugs. In 1990 he was sentenced to 22 years for masterminding a £2 million heroin import. At the time Customs called Showers, ‘The most significant UK national arrested in the fight against heroin.’ ibid.
Curtis Warren: Warren’s rise is one of the most remarkable in British criminal history. He first made the news aged 16 when he mugged a 78-year-old woman on the steps of Liverpool’s Metropolitan Cathedral. 8 years later he was arrested in Switzerland trying to rob a shoe shop. By the early ’90s he had progressed to mid-level drug dealing. Mysteriously though Warren made a huge leap forwards. ibid.
The Liverpool Mafia were white middle-aged criminals who worked on the docks. They were experts at smuggling contraband. They made a lot of money from armed robbery. And they were able to invest that in drugs shipments. Graham Johnson, author Powder Wars & the Devil
A ton is nothing. Michael Showers
What you see today, it’s a war zone compared with what it was. Michael Showers
Blowing a safe is easy. Charlie Seiga
I started to rob drug dealers. It’s called Taxation. Stephen French
We all felt we were behind their game because we didn’t have the availabilities to do surveillance, to gain evidence, and the forensic issues. Albert Kirby, retired detective
The lie was if you chase the dragon, which was smoking the heroin, the fumes and the silver foil, you can’t get addicted. And these people fell from it. And within months we had an epidemic. Mike Malloy, former Liverpool police detective
In December 2008 in Liverpool an 18-year-old youth Sean Mercer was sentenced to 22 years for the murder of Rhys Jones. Ross Kemp on Gangs s4e6: Liverpool, Sky 2009
In the north of the city lie the neighbouring suburbs of Norris Green and Croxteth – they’re united by a postcode: Liverpool 11. ibid.
A bitter local gang war between his Strand Crew and the Crocky Crew. ibid.
Nogzy Crew v Crocky Crew. ibid.
Matrix: A Force To Be Reckoned With: Targeting gun and drug crime. Between May 2007 and May 2008 there were a reported 48 shootings on Merseyside. ibid.
As far back as the late nineteenth century the tough streets around the docks were home to legendary gangs like the Cornermen. ibid.
Merseyside was left with a legacy of drugs and violence. ibid.
Stephen French became a master tax collector. ibid.
Gangs innit. Two fucking gangs. They both argue, know what I mean. It’s like that everywhere in the world, be honest. There’s two gangs always fighting. There won’t be an end unless everyone fucking dies. Liverpool gangsta
The most infamous was Curtis Warren, known as Cocky, a leading figure in the Liverpool mafia, and an international drug smuggling ring. Gangs of Britain II: Liverpool, CI 2013
The Cornermen plagued this city over a hundred years ago. ibid.
The massive influx of hard drugs into Britain – heroin and cocaine. ibid.
Curtis Warren’s masterstroke was to cut out the middlemen and deal directly with the suppliers. ibid.
180 kilos of pure heroin ... at the time this was the largest shipment ever captured in Britain. ibid.
Curtis Warren – he was Interpol’s target number one. ibid.
[Dutch] police confiscated 400 kilograms of cocaine, 60 kilos of heroin, 1,500 kilos of cannabis and 50 kilos of ecstasy. ibid.
In 2009 Curtis Warren was jailed once more. ibid.
Meet the Fitzgibbons: Christine and her two boys Ian and Jason. Their mission to become top dogs of Liverpool turned into a battle for supremacy. Their violent reputation helped them build their empire. This is the story of their rise to become narco kingpins of the Liverpool underworld. The Real Narcos UK: Blood & Fear s1e4: Liverpool’s Most Feared Family, Channel 5 2018
Large parts of the city are a wasteland of deprivation and violence … A heroin epidemic is taking hold. ibid.
Brothers Ian and Jason Fitzgibbon quickly move from dealing cannabis to more lucrative Class-A drugs. ibid.
One big threat to the Fitzgibbons’ emerging empire is this man – Curtis Warren. ibid.
Get out there and get the lads together. All of them. Going Off Big Time 2000 starring Neil Fitzmaurice & Dominic Carter & Nicholas Lamont & Nicholas Moss & Vinnie Adams & Sarah Alexander & Bernard Hill & Peter Kay & Huggy Leaver & Del Henney et al, director Jim Doyle, opening scene
They are refusing to rule out gang warfare. ibid. television news
He was more Stringfellow than Good-fellow. ibid. main man
Not much of a crew. The only one I had. ibid.
[jaunty music] Liverpool. A world city at the heart of the new county of Merseyside. It’s a city full of contrasts. A kaleidoscope of contradictions … Liverpool Narcos I: Heroin, public information film, Sky Documentaries 2021
We don’t class ourselves as being English: we’re the People’s Republic of Liverpool [laughs]. ibid. old lady in greenhouse
We have a degree of accepted lawlessness here. It’s like Cowboys and Indians. They don’t follow the rules ’cause they’re outlaws … the epicentre of drugs … Welcome to Liverpool. ibid. comments
What was it about Liverpool that made it such a big player in thee drug trade? The docks. ibid. Michael Showers, the boss
The hard part was getting it off [ship]. Customs were very very alert in Liverpool. Our firm had people who had relatives in senior positions. And that was it. It was just a matter of choosing the right time for them to take it off. Then pass it over to our sales division. And our sales division did their work. And then when I came home, just counted the money. ibid.
Pleading guilty at 15 to something I hadn’t done was my greatest regret. My greatest regret. Because that started it all. ibid.