The processionists’ noisy return to their home districts took them past the gathering places of Catholic gangs like the Kent Star, who viewed the arrival of the Billy Boys at the head of the marchers as an affront. During the last year, prosecutors also used the tough Proceeds of Crime Act - POCA - to seize more than £13m in illegal assets and cripple gangsters financially. James Burke, otherwise known as ‘Jimmy the Gent’, was an American gangster with known links to the Lucchese crime family. You can unsubscribe at any time. THE life and crimes of Scotland’s biggest gangsters will be told in a telly documentary. He added: "Organised crime is present in every community in Glasgow. As a subscriber, you are shown 80% less display advertising when reading our articles. Mr Gunn said: "Police staff, uniformed officers and detectives are all have a role to play in fighting serious and organised crime. Shopkeepers, too, made regular contributions in return for ‘protection’. The Billy Boys even acted as stewards at Unionist (Conservative) election meetings in Glasgow’s East End, until a Daily Mirror headline – “GANGSTERS” AS TORY STEWARDS – so embarrassed Unionist leaders that they turned instead to Glasgow University’s rugby club. They were divided into sections 40-strong, each with its own leader. Thanks! Non-sexual crimes of violence increased by 10%, from 7,251 to 8,008. On one occasion, Ross Prete, ‘leader-off’ of the Kent Star, was reputedly thrown head-first through a plate-glass window. He gained a following and became adept at marshalling the Billy Boys in activities such as church parades and religious processions, using them as an opportunity to march his gang through what were identified as Catholic thoroughfares. The following list of gangs was published in the Glasgow Evening Times in February 2006 [1] as identified by Strathclyde Police with the accompanying map.[2]. The Billy Boys engaged in bitter feuds with Catholic gangs across Glasgow’s East End. Now, Glasgow's top cops hope to use the data they have gathered to take on crime lords - many of whom believe they are untouchable. Here, historian Andrew Davies shares a closer look at the city’s gang wars…. The Billy Boys’ funds came from a variety of sources. The Mafia-style network of underworld gangs, which often work together, deal in everything from drugs and human trafficking to taxi firms and tanning salons. And the shocking scale and wealth of organised crime in Glasgow can today be revealed by the Evening Times. Capone’s money allowed him to bribe police officials, judges and even the Mayor of Chicago. "I understand the temptation is there, and that's what makes these groups money. "Serious and organised crime groups are sophisticated and share resources, they work together. Some are involved in money laundering, human trafficking, and prostitution. "A lot of the work police do around serious and organised crime is hidden. Police analysts have identified more than 40 active gangs in the city who "employ" around 900 people. Rackets include drugs, prostitution, money laundering, tobacco smuggling, counterfeit goods, extortion and the use of legitimate businesses across all sectors. 8. "We are reliant on information coming from the public and that's why we have such a commitment to community policing in Glasgow. "And in order to beat them, we have to do the same. East Glasgow had the most identified gangs with 41 followed by South Glasgow with 38 and North Glasgow with 31. "Small information gathered from the public by uniformed officers and our partners piece together to help build a bigger picture about the activities of serious and organised criminals.". During prohibition, Capone controlled the illegal alcohol, prostitution and gambling rackets in Chicago which brought in $100 million a year at its prime. Most joined in their late teens. Rebecca Gray. The Norman Conks (Conquerors, from Norman Street in Dalmarnock) were another long-standing adversary, targeting Billy Boys in tit-for-tat stabbings and occasional razor-slashings in seemingly endless cycles of reprisal. Fullerton took payments in return for breaking up left-wing meetings and even led assaults on demonstrations by the communist-inspired National Unemployed Workers’ Movement. The city was divided into North Glasgow, South Glasgow and East Glasgow. If you have a complaint about the editorial content which relates to inaccuracy or intrusion, then please contact the editor here. "We will do whatever we can to disrupt criminal's activities," he said. The most famous of these was the Billy Boys, a Protestant street gang from the East End of Glasgow. If you subscribe to BBC History Magazine Print or Digital Editions then you can unlock 10 years’ worth of archived history material fully searchable by Topic, Location, Period and Person. The murder scene in December 2006 (Image: Media Scotland). An enforcer for a feared Scottish gangster has been murdered. However, in common with many young men of his generation, he experienced repeated bouts of unemployment in his teens. In court, members of the Billy Boys claimed that the gang had been formed to protect those marching in the annual parades of the Orange Order (‘Orange Walks’), held each July. On the day of the Orange Walk, or a match between two teams, the Catholic gangs of the East End would join forces to oppose the Billy Boys, such was the Protestant gangsters’ strength in numbers. Those ads you do see are predominantly from local businesses promoting local services. "Our job is to put a stop to this and use our gathered intelligence to stop the spread of criminal networks in Glasgow.". They in turn took their orders from Billy Fullerton, the gang’s ‘chief’. The clashes that followed were the stuff of legend. Learn how and when to remove this template message, Special Investigation into Glasgow Gangs | Evening Times 06.02.06, Glasgow Gang Map of 2006 | Evening Times 06.02.06, "Clashes Between Rival Gangs Decreasing (Daily Record 2016)", "Police swoop to arrest thugs as young as 13 after brutal gang battle", List of criminal enterprises, gangs and syndicates,, Articles with dead external links from May 2010, Articles with dead external links from January 2014, Wikipedia indefinitely semi-protected pages, Articles needing additional references from July 2014, All articles needing additional references, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 20 August 2020, at 08:40. Police target 900 Glasgow gangsters: 48 active gangs identified operating across city. Readers’ comments: You are personally liable for the content of any comments you upload to this website, so please act responsibly. Many stayed active in the gang into their twenties and thirties. By entering your details, you are agreeing to HistoryExtra terms and conditions. You have successfully linked your account! However, police arrested 572 suspected gangsters, over the past year, in a series of blows to the city's underworld. During the 1930s, when the Billies numbered closer to 500, their fiercest opponents were the Kent Star and the San Toy from the adjacent district of the Calton. They took their name from the Dutch Protestant monarch William of Orange (‘King Billy’), whose victory at the battle of the Boyne in 1690 had secured Protestant rule in England and Scotland, as well as Ireland. As well as marshalling parades, Billy Fullerton also acted as the gang’s ‘secretary’ – a full-time job, as he explained in 1932: “I had to make plans for fights, look after the funds, and attend to a hundred and one other matters connected to the gang and its members.”. Historian Andrew Davies reveals the real history of the 1920s Scottish gangsters, During the 1920s and 30s, the Scottish city of Glasgow was home to a number of well-organised sectarian gangs. Detectives rank the gangs in terms of the threat, risk and harm they pose to communities, in a bid to prevent serious and organised crime from infiltrating people's lives.

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