It's been 38-years since the robbery that sparked a 'curse' and killed the veterans of London’s criminal underworld in the most gruesome of ways.
On November 26, 1983, six armed men burst into the Brink’s-Mat warehouse at Heathrow expecting to find £3million in cash.
But to their surprise – and what they thought was good luck – they stumbled upon £26 million (worth over £500million at today’s prices) worth of gold bullion, diamonds, and cash.
The heist turned them into some of Britain’s richest crime bosses, lining their own pockets and those of countless other crooks who were party to melting down the gold and laundering the money.
The dodgy cash was then used to fund further shady activities such as drug smuggling.
Just three out of 15 men involved in planning and executing the robbery were ever convicted – robbers "Mad" Mickey McAvoy and Brian "The Colonel" Robinson and security guard insider Tony Black, Robinson’s brother in law.
However, the others would pay for their crimes in more sinister ways from the year of the crime up to 2015.
Over 20 people connected to the heist are dead – including an ex-policeman who ended up with an axe in his head, an underworld figure gunned down on his yacht off Corfu, and an enforcer now believed to be part of the foundations of the O2 Arena in London.
The first death occurred in 1985, when Kenneth Noye, recruited for his links to the smelting trade, stabbed an undercover detective John Fordham in his garden.
At the resulting trial, the jury found Noye not guilty of murder on the grounds of self-defence.
However, he was handed a 14-year sentence in 1986 after police found 11 bars of gold at his home.
In 1990, Charlie Wilson had moved to Marbella, Spain, where he was suspected of being involved in drug smuggling and laundering the cash from the Brink's-Mat robbery.
He was shot dead on April 23, 1990 after losing £3 million that belonged to investors.
Then, in January 1993, launderer Donald Urquhart was also shot dead on Marylebone High Street in central London after informing police in the previous murder cases.
Five years later, Hatton Garden jeweller Solly Nahome and Gilbert Wynter were murdered over the disappearance of £800,000 from a cannabis deal while it was suspected that a rival gang murdered Nahome and Wynter to cause disruption.
Brian Perry was also shot in 2001, two years before a former associate of the infamous Kray twins, George Francis was shot dead by John O'Flynn outside Francis' courier business after laundering of the gold.
The final death in June 2015, John "Goldfinger" Palmer was shot dead.
The savage killings lead many to believe in a curse but a senior detective who worked on the investigation said he was never surprised by the brutal murders.
He said: "These villains were out of control, many of them off their heads on drugs bought with their newfound riches.
"The trouble was that when that money either ran out or in the case of some of them, never materialised, there was only one way to respond – to kill people to show others that even 25 years after the robbery if they dared to cross the gang they would still pay with their life."
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