Frankie Fraser
Frank was a freelance criminal and worked with many different gangs in his short stints of freedom.
He was into bank robberies, wage snatches, protection and even cashing in forged post office books. If there was the chance to earn a few quid Frank would take it!

In the mid 50’s the friendship forged with Billy Hill in those early prison days was to be rekindled when Frank went to work for him and Albert Dimes.
Although Frank worked for Billy Hill he also worked with Albert Dimes supplying gaming machines to West End clubs and still kept his hand in with a bank robbery here and there.
This new found friendship was interrupted when Frank earned himself another 7 years in prison when he slashed Jack Spot, Billy’s previous business partner.
When he was released from Durham prison in 1961, Billy Hill sent a pilot to pick him up. Frank asked him to fly over the prison where he promptly dropped a parcel of shit, which he had packaged earlier! A fitting farewell!
A welcome home party arranged by Billy and Albert was held at the Pigalle in Piccadilly attended by many celebrities including singer Shirley Bassey and Winnifred Atwell a famous pianist of the day.
After a well deserved holiday in the South of France with Bill and Ray Rosa he returned to England for his nephew Jimmy Essex’ wedding.
In 1962 Frank and Billy Hill attacked some wise guy Italians who had cheated Bill in a casino. They left them for dead on the streets of Westminster. This act of violence on Bill’s behalf cemented their relationship and Frank was put on a retainer of about £100 a week.
While Frank was doing the 7 years for attacking Jack Spot, his brother-in-law Jimmy Brindle was savagely beaten by Jimmy Rosa, Bill Noyes and Eric Mason.
Eddie and Charlie Richardson considered this attack on Brindle to be ‘a right liberty’, sought out the culprits and gave them a taste of their own medicine! This was a smart business move on behalf of Charlie and Eddi,e placing themselves higher in the gangland pecking order and earning the respect of Frankie Fraser and his contemporaries.
Frank first met the Richardsons in 1962 when they put money up for the defence of Frank’s nephew Jimmy Essex who was facing a shopbreaking charge. Jimmy Essex got 8 years but a new alliance was being formed.
Many people sought Frank’s services, including Harry Rogers from Brighton. Frank said Harry had a bingo hall and his manager was having an affair with his wife. Frank was hired to give him a beating.
The manager not learning his lesson, opened up a rival bingo hall in Eastbourne. Frank petrol bombed it and put him out of business.
Quite a few favours were done for Harry Rogers with nothing but ‘a drink’ to show for it. It was seen by many of Frank’s associates that Harry was taking advantage of Frank.
He was approached for a more reasonable recompense but was refused.
Frank (and Joe Wilkins) beat up one of Harry’s employees as a warning. The police were called and Frank was on the run yet again!
In 1963 Frank worked with Joe Wilkins, nephew of Bert Wilkins. (who was convicted of the manslaughter of Massimo Montecolumbo and received 9 months in prison)
Joe also went into partnership with Albert Dimes in his bookmaking business.
When gambling became legal Albert also became legitimate and left the seedier side of his activities in the past.
Albert let Frank continue with the one armed bandit business with his new partner who already had a foothold in the gaming industry.
Frank and Joe were in the process of buying the Starlight club off Oxford Street when a gun was found in Frank’s flat in Brighton.
Already on the run over Harry Rogers, Frank disappeared to a friend’s caravan in Clacton.
The club deal collapsed, and with no one to control their gaming machines the one armed bandit business dwindled.
During this time Frank had been approached By Tommy Wisbey to work with him on the Great Train Robbery.
Frank visited the now famous Leatherslade Farm and met other members of the gang. It was however decided that Frank was too hot and that although his services would be gratefully appreciated he could jeopardise the whole project.
Frank was eventually captured in January 1964 when he was driving home to Brighton.
Billy Hill, Albert Dimes and others persuaded Harry Rogers to change his mind and he was released in February 1964 when the case against him collapsed.
When he came out of prison he went to work with Eddie Richardson and very soon they had their gaming machines in most of the major clubs in the West End and all over England. And Frank and others have said that these clubs were only too happy to have their machines!
This partnership was to last only 2 years culminating with the battle at Mr Smiths club in Rushey Green.