Severely ill and stroke-prone, Last of The Great Train Robbers Ronnnie Biggs was released by British officials into the free light of day last Friday. After the ‘63 robbery, which involved the mail car hijacking of what would be roughly $70 million in today’s dollars, Biggs and his cohorts were quickly rounded up. The money wasn’t—the bulk of it has never been recovered. And after scaling a 30-foot prison wall and skipping off to Rio, it looked like Biggs wouldn’t be, either. That is until 2001, when craving “a pint of bitter,” Biggs returned to England to resume his sentence.
Beyond his decades as a fugitive, though, what best cemented Biggs’ outlaw celebrity status back home was his cavorting with The Sex Pistols. Shortly after their final performance at Winterland, the Pistols flew down to Rio and recorded a couple of tracks with Biggs. Their “collaborative” results—No One Is Innocent and Belsen Was a Gas—surfaced in both the film and soundtrack for Julien Temple’s The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle, from which a vid of Innocent can be seen below.