Tommy Hole was arrested for the murder of Nicky Gerard.
In a 35-year criminal career, Tommy Hole was a convicted armed robber, car thief, drug manufacturer and dealer, attempted murderer and probable killer, who had spent half this time in jail.
The sequence of events had begun with a 1970 turf war between Ronnie Knight – associate of the Krays, and a culprit in the £7 million Security Express robbery in 1983 – and ‘Italian Albert Dimes’, who the FBI considered the US Mafia’s man in London.
That year, Dimes’s top enforcer, Alfredo ‘Eyetie Tony’ Zomparelli, came to blows with Ronnie Knight in the Latin Quarter nightclub in London’s Leicester Square. Knight arrived with his two brothers, Johnny and David, and Billy Hickson, whom Knight describes as a ‘headcase’, and in the ‘war zone’ that ensued, David Knight was stabbed twice in the chest by Zomparelli.
Knight buried his brother in the spring of that year and swore he would see Zomparelli murdered, ‘for with him alive, the hate in me would eventually kill me as well’. Knight did not, after all, have to carry out this act of supposed self-defence, as Nicky Gerard came into Knight’s Soho club with a proposition.
Nicky Gerard, the son of the notorious London hit-man Alf Gerard, offered to keep Knight’s hands clean of Zomparelli’s death and to do the job for him and on September 4th 1974, Zomparelli was shot dead in the Golden Goose on Old Compton Street. A couple of days later, Gerard received a thick envelope from Ronnie Knight, a bonus for what doubled as a warped crime of passion – Gerard was seeing a former stripper called Rozanna, who was Zomparelli’s wife.
Gerard and Knight were subsequently arrested, though neither was convicted.
In the 1980s, Nicky Gerard crossed Tommy Hole in a fight for influence in the East End underworld. On a Friday night in June 1982, Gerard kissed his daughter Vicky goodnight, and left her on her 11th birthday to go to the pub for a drink. At 9.12pm he turned the ignition in his Oldsmobile and looked up to see two men a few feet from the car. They said a few words to him before opening fire with two shotguns and an automatic pistol. Gerard climbed from his car and crawled towards his house. Fifty yards from his home he was brought to a halt. One of the masked men broke the butt of a shotgun on his skull, then a final three shotgun blasts were delivered at close range. The two men left no evidence bar a Ford Cortina parked three roads away.

It was on this day in 1982 that Tommy Hole and his son Tommy Jnr were arrested in connection with Gerards murder. They had in their possession passports and visas for a trip to Florida. But they were cleared of the murder when an ID parade proved inconclusive.
Hole was now a major criminal player and he became involved in the large-scale production of amphetamine sulphate (speed). As time passed, his dealings diversified, encompassing anything from forged MOTs to selling firearms and armed robbery. He owned a hotel in Benidorm, and was one of the wealthiest criminals in the East End. But his true nature – a thief – led to Hole stealing a car in broad daylight, in September 1984. For this petty crime, comically minor compared to the gangland status he put at risk, he was fined £200 and £150 costs.
Four years later, Tommy Hole was brought to book on his more lucrative activities, and found himself in Snaresbrook Crown Court on charges of conspiracy to manufacture and supply amphetamine sulphate between November 1987 and January 1988. He received an eight-year sentence, which he served concurrently with a term for armed robbery. At the same time, his son was also given eight years, for conspiracy to supply amphetamines. This conviction was later overturned owing to irregularities in the police surveillance log. Two of Kevin’s co-defendants were released with compensation of up to £160,000. But Tommy Jnr had already taken his own life.
Gangland it is said, serves its own justice and vendettas are not often forgotten.
This proved apparent when years later in a small pub named The Beckton Arms in London’s East End where an an ageing Tommy Hole was drinking with friends, two men entered via the front door. After shooting one of his friends, Joe ‘The Crow’ Evans in the head, they pumped bullets into Hole with a handgun, four hitting Hole’s upper body and one his head.
The gunmen turned and left the pub and despite a pub full of witnesses, the killers are still free to this day.

Author: Hydroponify

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