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"He hoped to leave hospital to be at home with his wife"
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Tuesday, 29 August, 2000, 11:38 GMT 12:38 UK
Kray 'comfortable' in hospital
Reggie Kray is comforted by friend at funeral of his brother Charlie
Reggie Kray attended brother Charlie's funeral in April
Former gangster Reggie Kray is in a "comfortable" condition after spending a quiet night in hospital.

The 66-year-old gangland killer is being treated for cancer of the bladder at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital

He was released from prison by Home Secretary Jack Straw on Saturday on compassionate grounds.

Managers at the hospital have appealed to members of the public who want to pass on their best wishes to Kray to write in, after phone lines became jammed following a flood of calls.

I am hoping Reggie Kray will be leaving hospital soon. He's as tough as old boots

Trevor Linn, solicitor

A hospital spokeswoman said: "He had a quiet night and is comfortable - there will be no further press statements today."

On Monday, the hospital said Kray was feeling "a little better" and was now able to sit up in a chair in his room.

He is expected to remain in hospital for at least the next week as his condition does not allow him to leave.

His wife Roberta is maintaining a constant vigil at his bedside.

Friends and wellwishers visited Kray on Sunday. One said he was well, but tired after the visits.

Kray would not receive any visitors for the next few days, the friend added.

Reggie Kray
Reggie Kray: Too ill to leave hospital
Kray's solicitor, Trevor Linn, said the former gangster was "overjoyed" by his release.

"I am hoping Reggie Kray will confound all the experts and be leaving hospital soon. He's as tough as old boots," he added.

Mr Linn had written to Jack Straw to request his client's release to allow him "the dignity to die in peace at home".

The solicitor admitted he was surprised by the ruling, which he hailed as a "moral victory".

He said in future decisions of this nature should be taken out of the hands of the home secretary "so there is no political element".

Life sentence

Kray had been serving a life sentence at Wayland Prison, Norfolk, for the gangland murder of Jack "The Hat" McVitie.

His twin brother, Ronnie, was convicted of the murder of George Cornell in east London.

Ronnie died of a heart attack in 1995. Reggie was allowed out of prison in handcuffs to attend the funeral.

The twins' elder brother Charlie died in April, aged 73.

The author of the book The Krays' Lieutenant, Martin Short, said the brothers should be remembered for what they were, ruthless criminals.

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See also:

28 Aug 00 | UK
Last of an infamous trio
26 Aug 00 | UK
Reggie Kray freed
04 Apr 00 | UK
Charlie: The quiet Kray
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