Sunday, 28 July 2013

When The Krays Came to Liverpool

One largely untold story of how one of "The most powerful gangs in Europe" tried their hand in Liverpool but were knocked back.  Not by local villains but by just one cop.  Detective Inspector John Ralphson was told about a fire at a club in Leigh in Greater Manchester, just after a visit by London gang, The Krays.  He was told that a club in Liverpool was their next target.  DI Ralphson called the owner of the club and filled him in with what he had heard, and to get a message to him as soon as they arrive.

    Ralphson was supervising the movement of bullion to Lime Street Station and had been issued with a revolver.  A message came to him from the cub owner.  The Krays had arrived.  Ralphson hurried over to the club and found the Krays with a huge minder.  He was told by Reg Kray that they were discussing business and that it was none of his business.  He replied that they were to get out of Liverpool and not come back.  Kray suggested a quiet place to talk it over, and so they went to a telephone kiosk at the back of the club.  That was how phone set-ups were back then.  Kray offered a weekly bribe if Ralphson turned a blind eye.  His response was to put the gun he had on him, under the chin of Kray and told him that he, his brother and their minder had better go or else.  They went.  Later, the Lambrianou brothers tried to get a hold in Liverpool, and the "Gang Boss" claimed they were going to take over the city.  I know that this had produced howls of laughter, particularly in Liverpool, and shows how much of an inventive mind Lambrianou had.  Charlie Siega remembers them being in the city but leaving shortly afterwards.  Can you imagine the extremely tough and violent doormen in Liverpool being scared of them?  Yeah right.