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The Brighton Police Scandal (Hardback)

A Story of Corruption, Intimidation & Violence

Local History True Crime P&S History 20th Century 20th Century England

By Dick Kirby
Imprint: Pen & Sword True Crime
Pages: 224
Illustrations: 28 black and white illustrations
ISBN: 9781399017282
Published: 30th October 2021

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In the late 1950s the reputation of Brighton as a popular seaside resort took a sinister and notorious turn.

After a series of drunken disturbances, suspicions were raised that the owner of the Astor Club, which became known globally as ‘The Bucket of Blood’, was bribing members of the town’s CID to ignore licencing hours.

The situation escalated to the point where Scotland Yard’s Flying Squad was called in. Their investigation soon revealed that these bribes were the tip of a police corruption iceberg. Criminality among crooked cops had been going on for years. Provided money was paid, charges were dropped, previous convictions overlooked and evidence disappeared. Others were ‘fitted up’ unless they paid up. Police were party to burglaries, assisting in the ‘fencing’ of stolen property and protection payments from bookmakers, clubs and bars.

During the scandal filled trial of the Chief Constable and CID ringleaders there was perjury, violent witness intimidation with one having his premises burnt to the ground. All this and more is described in this meticulously researched account of one of Britain’s most publicised police corruption scandals written with insider knowledge.

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 Dick Kirby

About Dick Kirby

Dick Kirby was born in the East End of London and joined the Metropolitan Police in 1967. Half of his twenty-six years’ service was spent with Scotland Yard’s Serious Crime Squad and the Flying Squad.


Kirby contributes to newspapers and magazines on a regular basis, as well as appearing on television and radio. The Guv’nors, The Sweeney, Scotland Yard’s Ghost Squad, Brave Blue Line, Death on the Beat, Scourge of Soho, Scotland Yard’s Flying Squad, London’s Gangs at War, Scotland Yard’s Gangbuster, The Mayfair Mafia, Scotland Yard’s Murder Squad, The Racetrack Gangs and IRA Terror on Britain’s Streets are all published under the Wharncliffe True Crime imprint and he has further other published works to his credit. On retirement he lives near Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. 

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