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The BBC's Christine Stewart
"Noye's name was synonymous with organised crime"
 real 28k

Friday, 14 April, 2000, 11:32 GMT 12:32 UK
Murderer Noye's life of crime
Noye's arrest
Noye was arrested after being tracked to Spain
Kenneth Noye - found guilty of a road-rage murder - earned himself the title of Britain's most wanted man many years ago.

Notorious among detectives for being a scheming crook, there was little doubt Noye was involved in shady business deals, organised crime and an underworld of corruption.

He was tried, trusted and respected by major criminals, to help them and provide services for them

Former Flying Squad detective Robert Suckling
With a mansion in Kent and property in Spain, he led a lavish lifestyle. For years, police guessed at the source of his wealth but could prove nothing.

He once admitted stabbing a police officer, but managed to convince the jury he did so out of self-defence.

Seventeen years ago, some £26m of gold, platinum and diamonds were stolen in the country's biggest ever robbery, the Brinks Mat heist.

Noye was a leading suspect, but detectives could not get the evidence needed to charge him.

Surveillance tragedy

Former Scotland Yard Flying Squad Inspector, Robert Suckling, who got to know Noye through interviews, said: "He came across as a man who was used to living by his wit, his personality and by chat.

"He was a wheeler-dealer by nature. For a man with a great deal of money, I couldn't identify any legitimate business activity.

John Fordham
Stabbed to death: DC John Fordham
"He was tried, trusted and respected by major criminals, to help them and provide services for them."

In an attempt to prove Noye's involvement in the Brinks Mat robbery, a surveillance operation was set up at his home.

But the two undercover police officers were discovered - and Noye confronted them, together with his wife and a friend, stabbing to death Detective Constable John Fordham.

DC Fordham's colleague, Neil Murphy, said: "At one stage, one of the men said 'we'll blow your head off.'

"As soon as we realised one of them had a shotgun, the Flying Squad were called in."

Hate wish

Noye was eventually charged with handling stolen goods from the Brinks Mat robbery and jailed for 14 years.

As he was sent down, he gave the jury an horrific wish: "I hope you all die of cancer."

Stephen Cameron
Stephen Cameron also died of stab wounds
After his release, 21-year-old Stephen Cameron was stabbed to death on 19 May 1996, when, unarmed, he was involved in a fight with a driver off the M25.

For two years, police carried out detailed investigations - including checking 17,000 Land Rovers.

They revealed that Noye had fled the country the day after the murder, in a private helicopter and carrying a briefcase of cash.

String of lies

He was tracked to Spain, where he was arrested as he dined in a restaurant.

Waiter Antonio Cadoso recalls: "The police came and grabbed him and threw him to the floor. The man didn't put up any resistance. That was it - it took just a few seconds."

I've never hurt anyone

Kenneth Noye
At first, Noye denied any involvement in Stephen Cameron's murder, then later admitted he had stabbed him, but claimed it was self-defence - the mitigation which had helped clear him before.

It was the first of a series of lies which Noye hoped would help him wriggle free of the murder charge.

He stood trial at the Old Bailey - the UK's most famous court - under armed guard.

During the trial, Noye claimed: "I've never hurt anyone."

But instead of going home to his wife and mansion, Noye now faces another long prison sentence.

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