Arrest & Trial

trialOn the 8th May 1968 a team of over 100 detectives led by Leonard ‘Nipper’ Read raided homes all over London.
21 men in total that morning were arrested including the three Kray brothers and their firm.
After 50 hours of questioning 18 men appeared at Bow Street Magistrates Court on 10th May 1968 charged with demanding money with menaces, causing grievous bodily harm and conspiracy to defraud.
9 men were remanded in custody.

Their arrest and continued confinement before their trial, loosened the grip of fear they had on the community and it wasn’t too long until the East End code of silence had been broken. Within the next few months, with the help of some of the most respected members of the Firm, the police had made more arrests and were looking at further charges for the murders of George Cornell and Jack McVitie.

All of those arrested pleaded not guilty to all charges with the exception of Albert Donoghue.
He was then tried separately to the other men.

In January 1969 the biggest and most expensive trial in legal history to date began.
It lasted a total of six weeks during which the defendants were transported to and from court each day by a large motorcade of prison vans, police motorcyclists and police cars all with sirens and flashing lights.
And if the jury members were in any doubt as to how dangerous the men they were presiding over were, each jury member was provided with 24 hour police protection.

guiltyThe ten men who stood in the Dock were all convicted of various charges except for Tony Barry who was acquitted of being an accessory to the murder of McVitie. Donoghue received two years imprisonment at a separate trial.
The remaining nine men in the dock were charged with, convicted of, and sentenced to the following:

Ronnie Kray, aged 35
For the murder of George Cornell – Guilty.
For the murder of Jack McVitie – Guilty
Sentenced to Life imprisonment with a recommendation to serve at least 30 years.

Reggie Kray, aged 35
For the murder of Jack McVitie – Guilty.
For being an accessory to the murder of George Cornell – Guilty.
Sentenced to Life imprisonment with a reccomendation to serve at least 30 years.

Charlie Kray, aged 41
For being an accessory to the murder of Jack McVitie – Guilty.
Sentenced to 10 years in prison.

John ‘Ian’ Barrie, aged 31
For the murder of George Cornell – Guilty.
Sentenced to Life imprisonment with a reccomendation to serve at least 20 years.

Tony Lambrianou, aged 26
For the murder of Jack McVitie – Guilty.
Sentenced to Life imprisonment with a reccomendation to serve at least 15 years.

Christopher Lambrianou, aged 29
For the murder of Jack McVitie – Guilty.
Sentenced to Life imprisonment with a reccomendation to serve at least 15 years.

Ronnie Bender, aged 30
For the murder of Jack McVitie – Guilty.
Sentenced to Life imprisonment with a reccomendation to serve at least 20 years.

Freddie Foreman, aged 36
For being an accessory to the murder of Jack McVitie – Guilty.
Sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Cornelious ‘Connie’ Whitehead, aged 30
Carrying a gun – Guilty.
Complicity in the murder of McVitie – Guilty.
Sentenced to 2 years for the gun and 7 years for the complicity charge.

sentenceThere was still another case to answer for the Krays and their associate Freddie Foreman.

Ron Kray was charged with the murder of Frank Mitchell.
He was found not guilty.
Charlie Kray had the charge of murder dropped.
Reg Kray received 5 years for freeing Frank Mitchell from Dartmoor and another 9 months for harbouring him, to run concurrently with his other sentences.

Freddie Foreman was also found not guilty of murdering Frank Mitchell.

Trial judge Justice Melford Stevenson’s final words to the Kray brothers was “I am not going to waste words on you in my view society has earned a rest from your activities. Take them down.”

 

 

 

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