Harry Roberts (murderer)

Harry Roberts (Murderer)

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Harry Roberts (murderer)

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Harry Maurice Roberts (born 1936) is a career criminal who instigated the Shepherd's Bush Murders in which three police officers were shot dead in 1966. The killings happened after the plain-clothed officers approached the van which Roberts and two other men were sitting in, in Braybrook Street, near Wormwood Scrubs prison in London. Roberts opened fire on the officers when he feared they would discover the firearms his gang were planning to use in an armed robbery. He shot dead two of the officers, while one of his accomplices fatally shot the third. Having exceeded by far his minimum tariff of 30 years imprisonment, Roberts remains one of the United Kingdom's longest-serving prisoners.

Early life

Roberts was born in Wanstead, Essex, in 1936. As a child he became involved in crime by helping his mother to sell stolen goods on the black market. Roberts later described how the family owned a café in north London where his mother was "...selling on mostly food — tea and sugar — and sometimes ration books. Anything she could get her hands on." Eventually he was sentenced to detention after using an iron bar to attack a shopkeeper during a robbery. Roberts served a 19-month sentence inside Gaynes Hall borstal, and was released in January 1956.

One week after leaving the borstal, Roberts was...
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