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New book?

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Its gotta be better than his 1st one [redface][rofl][rofl]

EXCLUSIVE: Michael Healy Interview for Glasgow Crime Research – March 2014


For me meeting big Michael Healy face to face was a daunting prospect; I had heard all the stories and of course read all the news articles and chapters in the numerous books he has been mentioned in. I knew of Michael’s reputation, the respect he had and how he approached prison life. Thirty-one years the man has spent in numerous prisons around the UK.


How does one cope with such a large sentence I asked, “You just get on with it”, he said casually.


Michael is originally from the Shettleston. He was born there then at the age of eight moved to High End Ruchazie, in the east end of Glasgow. He is an old school criminal, a man who uses his head, and planned his armed robberies to military precision. Michael had already been through the prison system as a youngster and he knew the score from an early age.


This is when he started coming across William Lobban. Lobban had broken into the Balmore bar with Ponny Shannon and some others, he had been sent to prison for the pub break in, but he told the staff he was older than he really was. Younger prisoners done this a lot back then, especially if they had friends or co accused who had already made the move up the ladder, legally by coming of age.


Lobban wanted to go the cons, so he would be in a prison where he knew there were inmates that were well-known criminals and people he could use to climb the criminal ladder. These people were all over 21 and already on the road to being very violent hardened criminals.


When the likes of Michael Healy, Paul Ferris, Gerry Rae and George Goofy Docherty were serving time in HMP Shotts it was then Scotland’s showcase security prison. The Scottish government displayed it on TV and in the press as the inescapable prison, the prison where the staff ran the show and not the inmates, as had been happening in other Scottish prisons at the time.


It was the security prison that the people of Scotland saw as being 100% secure, the barrier between the public and some of Scotland’s most dangerous men. Michael Healy, one of Scotland’s cleverest and most dangerous criminals in the country had come into the possession of a large bladed chopping weapon. The meat cleaver was stolen from the prison kitchen and was kept in a safe storage area. It had been previously used to chop up fresh meat that was delivered to the jail and was not on the items that the prison inmates had to check in and out daily.

That is why it was never reported missing , but this was HMP Shotts, where most inmates were in for violence or had violent offences on their records. Also in addition, a lot of the inmates held old grudges with each other, some carried on from the outside..

Michael showed Lobban the meat cleaver he had stolen from the prison kitchen where he worked and asked him to stash it. Lobban obliged.

Michael had grief with some well-known criminals; Gerry Rae had a good team behind him. They all wanted a go at Michael, especially one George Goofy Docherty. Michael had a big problem with Gerald Rae. Rae had been accused of being after young boys. Michael had faced him up over it and Michael knew Gerry could be a very dangerous individual.

Rae had noticed Lobban and his young age, he would have looked like a duck out of water to Gerry, so he started making moves on Lobban. Lobban himself will admit Gerry Rae scared him, called him his peaches, would blow kisses at him, and wink at him, that sort of thing.

To any youngster at the time who knew Gerry this would be enough to scare the shit out of you. I never ever felt Gerry was jail gay or a predator to young boys in prison or on the outside.

I knew he was as violent as they came, but in later years the people who have told me Gerry liked young boys have become more and more and these are well-respected people who have nothing to gain in talking about Gerry and his fondness for young boys.Therefore, I find myself having to accept the claims of those who knew him better than me. After all I was only a young person when I knew Gerry, was this his reason for being so fond of me? “I smile with a look of disgust at the thought”.

Back to the story.

Lobban had already sussed out the prison politics between Healy and others and wanted nothing to do with it as it was way over his head in terms of what could happen. That is why he told Gerry Rae that the trouble between Healy and others was nothing to do with him and gave Rae the meat cleaver that he was asked to stash for Healy and then Lobban attempted to demonstrate his intentions to distance himself from Healy.

Unfortunately for Lobban another prisoner who heard the conversation between Lobban and Rae and told a close associate of Mick Healy’s what was said, this prompted Healy to go to Lobban’s cell which he found was locked. Healy asked the prison officer to open the cell door and was told in no uncertain terms that Lobban’s cell was not to be opened.

Healy then opened the spy hole (which was covered from the inside) and kicked the door to make sure Lobban was still there.Lobban responded and Healy told him to remove the obstruction away from the spyhole so that Healy knew Lobban was there and conducted a whispering conversation through the closed door as to what the fuck was going on. Lobban told Healy that the prison troubles were way over his head and informed the prison officers that he was aged 19 and not 21, so should be moved to a young offender prison thus getting away from the imminent violence.

During the cell door conversation Healy was quick enough to understand that Lobban had just pulled a master stroke to get him removed from Shotts (an adult prison) but also to get him removed from the potential violence that he perceived was about to take place. Lobban was also making Healy vulnerable by handing over such a weapon to the opposition and leaving his so-called “Brother” Healy to face the consequences of any physical retribution by the opposing jail factions Lobban knew it was just about to kick off big time in Shotts..

Healy was also aware the prison staff where showing signs of protecting Lobban, by refusing to open his cell door so he could talk to him, a requirement that would usually have been granted without question, with them both being known to frequent each other’s company. The reality was that Lobban was now on protection, in prison terms this is classed as going “Behind the door.”

To say that Healy took this conversation with Lobban through a locked door lightly is a massive understatement as here we have one of his own (Lobban) handing over a weapon to the opposition (Rae) which left Healy not only outnumbered but also without the main weapon ….The meat cleaver! 

Lobban had been placed on a protective status after his conversation in which he admitted his age (19) to the PO (Principle Officer) George Silver in which he also informed the PO of other deadly weapons that are within the prison including lock knives, metal spikes and the main one being the meat cleaver. Lobban was removed from his prison cell during lock up time when other inmates are in their cell and removed from HMP Shotts to a YOI (Young Offender Institution) and because of the nature of the weapons that Lobban had described to the PO the prison governor made the decision to place the prison on lock down.


This meant that all prisoners were to remain within their cells and a specialist search team was brought in to search for the weapons that Lobban had informed the prison authorities about. As a direct result of this information from Lobban the meat cleaver was discovered in the laundry area of the prison wing along with a lock knife and several other items that were deemed to be deadly weapons. Several prisoners were removed from HMP Shotts to other prisons so that any feuds that were about to kick off reduced the fear of prison officers being maimed or getting caught up in the violence that was at boiling point.

Lobban denied that he deliberately told the authorities his real age so he could avoid the disagreement with Rae and Goofy; he said his reasons for telling his age was the fact that Rae had told him he was raping him. There are questions only William Lobban will know the answers to, but you never get a true answer from Lobban, only his version of events, which have been proven are only versions that make him look good and the truth comes second.

Michael was not long into his ten-year sentence, he was working in the kitchens at HMP Shotts, Lobban and others had moved on when he noticed the butchers van came in and out regularly. He joked with someone who will remain un-named, “do you think I could hide in there and get out the prison, the person said yes, and no problem.”

Michael watched the van come and go for another few weeks then decided it was time to take the chance. He climbed into the van when no staff was looking and pulled a load of boxes on top of him. He said, “The van door opened and the head count was done, then he heard the word, Clear”.

However, HMP Shotts had been showcased as Scotland’s most secure prison; they had built a perimeter fence outside the main fence, so the van had to go through another gate before he was free. Michael hadn’t noticed the van was in fact a refrigerated van, it was cold in there so he snuggled into the boxes, the van door opened for a second time and the call of ,“Clear” was again shouted out, the van door was closed, the main gate opened and Michael was off to freedom, so he thought. 

Inside the van, Michael had tried ripping the tin from the inside of the refrigerated van but there was insulation in between, so he thought, “Fuck it, I will wait it out till the driver opens the van and sprint out. He said, I found a little hole I could see through, I was watching and getting more excited as we got nearer Glasgow. I could see the familiar scheme’s pass me by.The next thing I noticed Ruchazie, then the turn off, I was thinking, “NO”, but as sure as hell, the van turned into HMP Barlinnie. 

I had just escaped from one of the most secure prisons in Scotland to be taken straight into another. My heart sank, I hid behind those boxes, thinking, I have no luck, I am caught, but lady luck or someone was looking down on me that day, the van went in, done its delivery and drove straight back out. The driver’s next stop was in the town centre, when he opened that door I came flying out like frozen maniac, eyes wide aware. The driver nearly took a heart attack, especially when I started chatting to him and making jokes about mates locking me in there all the time. However, I was free.

I was the most wanted man in the country; I was a known dangerous armed robber. They had my photo everywhere. Friends got me set up in a little flat in Rutherglen. But it wasn’t long before his and William Lobban’s paths would cross again.

Michael had been watching Rutherglen rent office, it held a bit of money on a certain day but it was a difficult job, others had thought of trying it but they all dropped the idea, as they knew there was a guard on the door and it would have been near impossible to gain entry to the required area without alerting the guard.

William Lobban talks of this in his book, “The Glasgow curse”, but William tells it as if he was in the Rutherglen rent office, carrying out the robbery. Michael watched it and noticed there was a children’s panel above the rent office. He asked a good friend if he could ask a female he knew if she would go to the door of the rent office and ask the guard where the children’s panel was. Michael thought the guard was more interested in the good looks of the woman than the thought she might be playing him to gain entry to the building. The guard showed her through the door and into the council office. Michael now had his way in. 

He met up with Lobban and asked him to be his getaway driver, thinking, he is now more experienced, he should now know the score and put the Shotts incident down to lack of bottle and immaturity. He told Lobban his plan and how he wanted it followed and asked him to be his getaway driver. Lobban agreed, Michael gave him clear instructions to wait outside until he came out, Lobban was told that when Michael came out and got into the car he was to drive away slowly and turn right into traffic and the getaway would be easy. They would mingle with other cars and no one would know any difference.

Michael went into the office and the raid went as planned. Michael had dressed as a woman with a pump action shotgun in his jacket. Thinking back, he laughs to himself, thinking how he must have looked to others that day.

He grins at the thought.

Michael got the moneybag and came sprinting out the rent office, like a transvestite on speed. He got into the car and said to William, to “DRIVE, “but slowly, as pre-planned, take your time no need to panic”.Lobban done the opposite and put his foot down, the car screeched off drawing the attention of passers-by, Lobban’s over enthusiasm, nerves or inexperience , caused him to hit an oncoming car head on.The getaway car was a total write off. They had to get out and escape on foot. Michael was dressed as a woman, in heels and pencil skirt…not easy to try run while dressed like that, especially with a heavy cash bag and pump action shotgun inside his jacket.

Lobban and Michael headed to the nearest house and asked the householder if they could use their phone; the old couple looked at Lobban and Michael and agreed. The old man tried making conversation with Michael, but Michael said, “ I couldn’t say anything, all I could do was nod, as my voice would have been a dead giveaway…he said, I was looking at Lobban thinking, what the fucks going on?

The man let Lobban use the phone. Lobban called a taxi and when asked where he was going he said, “The town centre”. Michael recalls, “I was looking at him, thinking, “The town fucking centre”, why not Rutherglen, Ruchazie anywhere but the centre of fucking town. The taxi came and they headed to the town with Michael still not able to speak, all he could do was draw Lobban looks that would kill.

They got to the town centre and paid the taxi driver, Lobban then headed into a pub. Michael by this time was fuming, there he was dressed up as a woman, standing in the middle of the town centre with shotgun and proceeds of a robbery and Lobban wanted to go into a pub? The man himself said, “I looked a right state, look at me, I’m not exactly the right type to pass as a woman, me being six foot odd and athletically built”. His height makes him look a lot thinner than he really is.

It brought a wry smile to my face as he told me this amusing story. So it appears it was not such the master robbery as Lobban portrays in his book, “The Glasgow curse”. Both were arrested for the Rutherglen rent Office Robbery, Michael got a Not Proven and Lobban getting six years.

The inexperience in which Lobban showed as a getaway driver was experienced first-hand by Healy when the screeching of tyres and zooming off from a crime scene was nothing short of an amateur driver losing his nerve. Healy had only really known Lobban for a short period of time and after the chaos of watching Lobban doing the exact opposite of what he was instructed to do as a getaway driver it came as no surprise that Healy parted company with Lobban who was fast becoming a dangerous liability.

Talking to Michael gave me the impression he was annoyed and maybe a bit angry about Lobban’s claims in his book, but more amused.

As stated above Michael had known William Lobban a short time, OK they had met through the years but the time spent in together company was relatively short, especially outside prison. But he was a criminal, an associate so there was a level of trust between them until the betrayal by Lobban on Michael in the well documented,” Ferris situation” at the flat in Rutherglen.



Michael stated; before the betrayal by Lobban it was ideal I could come and go, I had done all I could to change my identity but I am a tall man, not much you can do about that.Until then  luck was on my side, I had good friends and family, who looked after me, they know who they are don’t need to mention names, as they all know they have my lifetime respect for helping me out in those days.Michael had been on the run for four years from HMP Shotts, working away, keeping himself to his close friends and virtually living under the noses of the cops in Rutherglen.

Then William Lobban escaped from HMP Dungavel, well he never escaped he absconded, ran away, from a hospital visit with three months of a 6 year sentence to serve?This puzzled many people, why run when only 3 months to serve?However, he did and his first point of call was Ponny Shannon and his brothers. They were old friends.

After a few weeks William claims he got bored with the Shannon’s and went looking for Paul Ferris. He went to the Cottage bar and told Paul he was on the run, he needed some work and some help.

He also looked up an old friend Michael Healy. Michael knew what had happened in Shotts and what had occurred in the Rutherglen robbery, but now they were both escaped prisoners.. Lobban went to Michael’s mother and asked if she could find out where Michael was living, she knew Lobban but did not know exactly where Michael was.

However, word got to Michael and an address was provided for Lobban to go see Michael. When he got there, it was like long lost friends, but looking back Michael now said I should have got onto what was happening It was all talk of old times then Paul Ferris name came into the conversation. I had been holed up, being provided with only second-hand information of what was going on in and around the criminal scene in the city.

I had heard that Paul had a long list of warrants for attempted murder; I had heard the damage he and his crew were doing, I had heard he was around McGraw, actually Lobban told me that. So I said to Lobban as a friend, I would watch yourself with that mob”. It was tongue in cheek; it was passing comment, he was an escaped convict running around with the criminals that Strathclyde police wanted most. Not the choice of friends or people I would be around, that is why I stayed on the run so long. Of course, I had friends who were as active, but I kept at arm’s length, for their sake as much as mine. Also the letter by Mr A Vannett, that was doing the rounds never helped at the time.


On this visit, Lobban left as quickly as he arrived. Next day he was back at the door, I had told him he was a friend and to come see me anytime. So when he re appeared I thought nothing of it…he sat chatting then asked to use the toilet. I do not think I even answered.He went out into the hall and next thing Paul Ferris came rushing in with a pistol with a silencer on it, a shot was fired into the stereo I was listening to.I was told not to move and interrogated by Paul as to who was saying what about him, me, I was only interested in Lobban. I was looking at him with utter contempt. Lobban saw a chance, maybe a chance to get rid of Paul and me in one swoop.

Here is a man to an extent I trusted, he was a fellow criminal I had been on the run from Shotts for 4 years, and I had been his co accused. Here he was, setting me up, demanding I be killed. Paul and I spoke and came to an agreement, with at one time Paul actually turning and telling Lobban to be quite.

He was telling Paul he could not leave me alive, as I would come after them both.I would have, straight after they left, but Paul and me gave each other our word that it was done for now. Paul made me swear that I would not go for Lobban and if I did then I would have to deal with him as well. I had plans; I had to stay out of prison. When they left, Paul did not take any guns, he took the ammo though. I also had a little white escort van that I used to get about. I needed that van more than I needed the hardware.

Before they left the flat, a friend came to the door. A good friend and one as capable as Paul or Lobban. If he had have got involved it could have got very serious.However, Paul was the one with the control. Michael put the word around that they had taken his little white van, “The fuckers have left me without a van, and they took my only method of sneaking around” and certain people thought this was out of order and when word got to Paul, he ordered Lobban to take the van back. This had been ten days later. I had been holed up in my flat and had not moved or taken a visitor, but I had the material to protect myself replaced. Ten days later, I was sneaking about the flat, looking out the windows when I saw two cars draw up. One was my little white van being driven by Lobban.

I went into the room and got a shotgun, I had on a baseball cap…I went to the flat door and looked through the spyhole with the gun loaded and pressed against the letterbox. I saw Lobban come into view.He was hesitant, looking at the door and all around him, I had after all not moved for 10 days, they had been watching the flat, he must have been thinking that after the scenario between him and Paul I would have fled my safe house to a new hiding place. However, I decided they had guessed that and I stayed put. 

Lobban was still standing, looking at the spyhole and the letterbox without making the few steps forward to come into the doorway. I turned to get closer to the spyhole of the door and the rim of my baseball cap hit the door. Lobban jumped, he froze, was alert and paranoid: his eyes were fixed on the letterbox…I watched as he walked into the doorway. I press the barrel of the shotgun against the letterbox as I watched him take my little white van keys from his pocket and put them towards the letterbox, “clink” - they came through and Lobban was off. One lucky man that day. If I had not been on the run, I would definitely have decided to pull the trigger. Actually, at the time, if I had,  it could have caused a major gang war to escalate to murderous proportions in Glasgow, worse than it did end up not long after.

When I got my van back, I went to see auld Arthur Thompson, His son had been killed and the press had linked my name along with Lobban’s and Paul’s. Auld Arthur was not a stupid man; I asked him if he thought I had anything to do with his sons murder, he did not, I was asked about Lobban and I warned him of his methods, devious and untrustworthy but dangerous. Auld Arthur asked me, “So this Lobban will betray his friends”

He kept on about that. I told him, I knew he would betray anyone, he done it to me and he classed me as a friend, we spoke some more and left auld Arthur’s. Next, I heard the rumours that Bobby Glover and Joe Hanlon, had been lured to their deaths by Lobban.

I was put in the frame for the Thompson murder and police suspected I had killed Lobban and cut up his body. However, I had nothing whatsoever to do with any of that. I was having my own problems and was now the most wanted man in the UK. Healy had to go back to work, so he started planning a robbery and had teamed up with some of the most prolific armed robbers who he met and formed an armed gang that were very professional in robbing security vans and banks. A few boys from down south had been earning down there, they were doing well. Getting good turns and walking away with good money. Therefore, I was planning the big one. I had been told there was a big bank in Torquay that was a holding bank.

On a certain week, it would have at least £6,000,000 (six million) in it, which would do me. I started putting together the team but things went wrong I was arrested and charged with a robbery in Torquay along with Ian McDonald, my brother James, Robert Harper, Micky Carroll and Thomas Carrington.

The next time I came across William Lobban was when  he offered to appear as a defence witness in our trial for the Torquay robbery. William offered to go as a defence witness and help incriminate Paul Ferris, Bobby, and Joe for the robbery.

Incrimination is accepted in criminal circles, as long as the person being incriminated is innocent, it is a funny use of a legal method, but I incriminated Paul for the Torquay robbery and he incminated me in the Thompson murder. It the done thing and criminals are well aware of this. Lobban turned up at court in a suit and tie and a bible in hand. I was defending myself; Lobban swore on oath that he was a reformed criminal and that Paul Ferris was responsible for the armed robbery.

He started adding things about leggy blonde-haired women being set up to give people aids. He was asked a question about Bobby and Joe; he mentioned he had remorse for Bobby Glover.

The trial was stopped and the judge warned him that the word “remorse” could have other meanings.

I wanted him off the stand; he had tried his best but was making things worse.We were all eventually found guilty and handed down heavy sentences. I was sentenced to 31 years, for the robbery and the escape from Shotts.

When Lobban came to Full Sutton he came into my cell and said, “Mick my life is in your hands” I thought, well he tried helping me in the trial so, let by gone be bygones…that is just the type of guy I am., though I would now definitely keep an eye on him.

The last time I seen him was when the riot at HMP Full Sutton kicked off. I was one of many prisoners told to go behind my door by the rioters as this was nothing to do with me and I had other charges to face even the screws shouted at me to get behind my door. I did just that bowed out the prison politics, a hard thing to do when you have been in so long, but the prisoner were right and I took that advice.

When I dubbed my door I could hear wooden furniture being piled against my door, I started panicking thinking if this is set alight I’m dead, there is no chance they would get me out. I then heard something outside my door, I went over and took the bit of toilet paper I had covering the spyhole of my door. William was there, with a look like Jack Nicholson from the movie The Shining, “Here’s Johnny type of look”.

He had a lighter in his hands lit with this crazy smile, he was not going to set the furniture on fire but was letting me know that because I gave it the all clear in full Sutton for him he was returning the favour.He could quite easily have lit that furniture and I would have been in serious trouble.

After Lobban was moved the police approached me from Glasgow and two cheques were put on the table, each for £50.000, it was the insurance cheques for Bobby and Joe.I was asked if I would appear and confirm that Lobban had confessed to the murders of Bobby and Joe and his admission during our robbery trial that he had remorse for the death of Bobby Glover.

Being a major criminal and serving a 31-year sentence, I just could not or would not cooperate with the police for any reason. Just the way it is, but all criminals and ex criminals like me would do the same in my position.

The then Strathclyde police reckoned that him using the word remorse indicated that he had involvement, in both murders,If not he would have used a term like, regret, upset - but not remorse. Lobban himself and Gerry Gallagher both admit the police were calling him an evil man every time he walked by them to take the stand in my trial. I assume Paul and Reg McKay used some artistic licence when describing the events, they played a clever game writing those books, they knew nothing of what happened to Bobby and Joe but writing those books got them a lot more info that they would ever have got. Good smart move on both Reg and Paul’s part.


I look back and think. William Lobban had a deep desire to be the number one criminal in Scotland.Does he still hold these views? Recent events make me think he might just have. He is a game player. Someone who thinks he is more intellectual than any other criminal is.

However, sadly he is not, he is a betrayer of friends - a Judas would do whatever it takes to get his own way.No matter what, no matter who.

 Glasgow Crime Research (c) [comp][thumb]


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Reply with quote  #3 
I want to be seen as a reformed character doing the right thing. 

Uncle Billy.jpg

William (Judas) Lobban

“I read that in The Scotsman,” I said. “They’re carrying guns on regular call-outs. They were photographed just going into a McDonalds with guns for no reason.”


“You remember,” said William, “that Paul Ferris was (allegedly) threatening me online and on Twitter and stuff. Veiled threats like: Your time’s coming soon.”

“He was allegedly posting your postcode online,” I said.

“That’s right,” said William. “Although that’s an open secret. People have known I’m here since I’ve been here. 

But I sought advice on what to do and I was advised I should report it to the cops, which I did – cos I want to be seen as a reformed character doing the right thing.

The TRUTH is out there...........

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Reply with quote  #4 

The Glasgow Crust:
A Life of Judas in the Criminal Underworld [rolleyes][sleep][crazy][comp][thumb]

'In his engaging "no-holds-barred" autobiography, The Glasgow Curse, Mr. Lobban tells the story of his life within the Scottish crime milieu with wit, skill and unflinching honesty' - All Things Crime (blog)

  • I agree a great review Patrick, your reviews are always in depth, unbiased and very insightful.
    Sadly though, William has conned people with 65% of this story, which is sad as he had the knowledge to write a better example, plus, if he is really reformed he could have been a bit more honest and unselfish with the family members of those who died.
    This book is just another betrayal by William, a betrayal to the memories of those who lost loved ones. William lost nothing but his mind in the events that unfolded.
    A man with no friends or connections left from his attempt at being a criminal. That says a lot to people in Glasgow.
    The book should be in the genre of Novel rather than true crime.

        • But do have a read and wonder at the marvels of the imagination, never ceases to surprise me, who ones imagination can run wild when given a pen, or now days a laptop.

        • [image]BJW Nashe says:

          James, your comments are vague. If you don’t care for the book, fine. But you claim the book is inaccurate or dishonest. Please cite specific instances so we know what you are talking about.


            I’m sure if you have a read at this article and what Micheal Healy, Alex and Ponny Shannon and Paul Ferris have to say then you might just change your mind. To say my comments are very vague, I don’t understand. I said the book was inaccurate, everyone mentioned says the book is inaccurate. What am I doing wrong, but reviewing what William has written?
            I have contacted William a few times and asked him to answer some questions and being told to go away or not replied to at all. Not the actions of a man who tells the truth. Research proves what William has written as untrue.
            It’s easy to write a book that’s 65% accurate and claim it all as accurate, many have done this before, with good reason. Many have written them as factual as they can?
            Micheal Healy has just finished a full interview with me, and the man told it as it was. read the interveiw, do the research, don’t just take the writters word, especailly with so called true crime.


  1. [image]BJW Nashe says:

    Great review. I too have bonded with people in nightclub restrooms while on LSD. No guns were involved, though. Lobban’s story sounds incredible. The robberies, the prison riots. Good that he’s made it through the madness and emerged intact, ready and willing to write about it all. Bravo.

  2. [image]Misty says:

    Lives quietly in Scottish highlands what a bloody joke of a man and a book. He terrorised the poor pensioner unfortunate enough to live next door to him in Kiltarlity. He befriended a man with serious head injuries and conned him out of £1000′s. This man is now dead… Lobban was feeding him drugs! Scumbag and for him to be writing a book pretending to have turned his back on crime. A heap of absolute shit!

    • Sadly, that’s what William is all about, he is a con man, a dangerous man , Yes, but a conman all the same, people think I slate the man and his book because I don’t like William. That is not the case,I am a researcher and I have never met him, but have spoken to dozens who have and all have the same thing to say. His book was not bad, but not accurate.A good imagination and should go into writing fiction rather than true crime. My opinion only and not meant to offend.



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Reply with quote  #5 
How ironic is this statement ---- For the true story on Ferris you need to read The Glasgow Curse autobiography. The tide is turning and the people of Glasgow are beginning to see this man for what he really is and what he stands for. He can fool some people sometimes.... 

Lobban is trying to be cute and when you search the internet for independent links his book is not all that it seems.

Starting with this -- [rolleyes][idea] one has to ask themselves how on earth young Arthur was able to send armed police to a house in Rothsay when he was in prison serving an eleven-year prison sentence? [nono][nono]

Big mistake as Paul was arrested in 1983 and young Arthur Thompson in 1984 in Barlinie Prison on a remand which means he was not yet sentenced and is well documented ---- even court records if one was to have a gander [biggrin]

The highlighted quotes come from a website of a person who knew Paul for a couple of months and is now the authority on Paul's life? [crazy] -- have a read on the link below.


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Reply with quote  #6 
My daughter, Tamara, who is only 12, and she’ll know I’ve written this book for her from the heart. Tamara lives in Spain with her Spanish family and I’d love to spend more time with her. She is now getting to an age where she is starting to ask questions about me. I don’t want my daughter growing up believing these malicious and derogatory stories that can be found in books, online and in newspaper articles. This is why I have dedicated The Glasgow Curse to her.

In 2005 I was involved in a three-week exclusive interview with a young, raw crime reporter from the then News of the World, his name was Graham McKendry. The editor of the newspaper was Bob Bird, husband to Jackie Bird who reads the Scottish news, and he had been after an interview with me for many years. Bob Bird would often say to me ‘you should write your life story William’. He even went out of his way to set up a meeting with the owner of Mainstream publishing in Edinburgh, a man by the name of Bill Campbell, and I went along to talk about the prospects of signing a book deal.

However, circumstances would dictate my path and any realistic opportunity of writing a book were put firmly on the back burner. I want my daughter Tamara to forget whatever she reads about me that she can find in books, online and in newspaper articles. I know her mum Monica will have an influence over her perception of me. That is why I need to reach out to Tamara and show her my love, how I have changed and travel to Spain to meet with her.

I know there are bridges to be built and I can do it to convince my extended Spanish family that I am not the monster that they have read about. This is why I have dedicated The Glasgow Curse to her.

William Lobban

The TRUTH is out there...........

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Reply with quote  #7 

We have a new Glasgow crime book out from the man they call Judas in the criminal underworld. William Lobban,  decided to title this autobiography “The Glasgow Curse” Why?

At Glasgow Crime Research, we  try our best to collect as much data on organized crime as possible, we try our best to dispel the myths and separate the facts from the fiction.

We read every true crime book that has a Glasgow connection and collect what  information we can prove as factual then add it to our database .

When news broke that William Lobban was writing a book, we thought, “At last, the man is going to tell his side of the story”

We waited for the release date, anticipating some new information we could use, but instead we were let down, firstly by the constant change of the release date, then by the inaccurate serialization of the book in the  Scottish press.  Then by the lack of research for the book and lastly by how William used the book to have digs at others

We wrote a profile on William 3 years ago, so we already had most of the information he released in the book, plus more.  

We were able to talk to a wide range of people, who either knew William growing up, spent time in prison with him, worked with him and in some cases classed him as a good friend.

So we were able to put together a good bit of information on William from a wide range of sources.

People who knew William before he was propelled into the limelight by the deaths of Bobby Glover and Joseph Hanlon, spoke of a young man who was determined to be a well-known criminal.

We were told he would hero worship criminals older criminals, people like his uncles, Robert, William and Vincent Manson, Bobby Dempster and of course Arthur Thompson Snr, though he never actually met Thompson, he heard stories from his uncles and seen the respect they had for the old Arthur..

William had a hard upbringing, that’s a fact, but so did thousands of other youngsters growing up in Glasgow in that era, poverty was rife; people did get involved in crime as a way of life. It was all about survival.

 If your parents could not afford to clothe or fed you then you went out and clothed and fed yourself.

Weans from the schemes roamed the streets of more affluent areas, mostly in packs, hunting out victims, either to rob them, their cars, their houses or their workplaces. It was just the way it was

But, there were thousands others who had it tough, but managed to lead a normal crime free life and still do to this day.

William Lobban claims he MASTERMINDED a break in to a pub. This seems typical of the way William thinks,. As I said above, youngsters were roaming looking for anything to steal and would resort to the most elaborate schemes to steal what they wanted.. Pubs and clubs were broken into all over Scotland, archived crime articles from the era will confirm this.

I think he presumed the word MASTERMINDED would appeal to people who don’t know any better, but to those who do, it sounds childish, exaggerated and embarrassing, why not just say, “We grafted the  Balmore and explain how it was done?

Then he tells of lying about his age, telling prison authorities that he was 21 when in fact he was younger, again this is something that was done a lot, especially by people 18 and over, it was easy back then. Young offenders prison is and always has been a tougher sentence than the cons (Over 21’s). It is more relaxed in the cons, when in the YO’s it is chaos.

William went on to adult prison not expecting to come across prisoners who were capable of victimizing young vulnerable prisoners.

William speaks of Gerald Rae, claiming Gerry had his eye on him as a potential boyfriend. Gerry was winding William up, he tagged William Peaches and would blow kisses at him every time William walked past.

Gerry wasn’t openly jail gay and most people we have spoken to who served long prison sentences with Gerry say they have never seen him go near a young boy, a lot who saw what went on with William and Gerry look back and laugh at Gerry’s sense of humor, so if Gerry was jail gay he never showed it in front of the main stream prisoners. Long term prisoners from the 80’s onward would not stand by and watch a youngster being openly abused by someone on their wing; it just wasn’t allowed to happen. There are prisoners who served long term sentences who would be offended at anyone claiming they would stand by and allow that to happen.

William then went to the prison governor and told them he had lied about his age to get out of adult prison and back to young offenders, still convinced Gerry was after him as a cell mate.

When you think of it, it’s quite funny  he was being teased, only to teach him a lesson not to play with the big boys.

The escape from Dungavel prison, the escape that propelled him into a situation he never expected.

William claims in his book he escaped to help out his friends the Shannon brothers, while researching we have been given other reasons for William escaping, we cannot prove them as fact. But it does provide another possibility.

We were told by two different sources that William escaped because he owed money for drugs, he was going to the hospital to have tattoos removed and was told his debt would be cleared if he would pick up a drugs parcel from the toilet in the hospital, William agreed, but decided to keep the parcel and go on the run.

If you look at the circumstances  surrounding the  escape ,it does look like the escape was spur of the moment, William had been visited by the Shannons, yet he never mentioned to his only friends about going to the hospital or escaping. He could have easily had a getaway car waiting and a safe house sorted out, he had family who were active criminals, this wouldn’t have been a problem for them or his friends, but instead William just turned up at the Shannons house ,escaping with just six months left of his sentence  to serve.

It's apparent the escape wasn’t planned, William made the decision to escape on the spur of the moment,.

William now an escaped prisoner, though low level, he was still wanted by the authorities, no one was more surprised than them that William had decided to escape, he was a model prisoner, gaining his cat D and being sent to open prison to prepare for release.


When he got involved in the dispute between the Shannon’s and another local family, William was handed a gun, this made him feel invincible, he would carry this gun everywhere we are told, taped to his thigh, he tried planning a retribution attack on the enemies of his friends, but William wanted others to pull the trigger, he wanted to dish out the plan but not take part in the actual shooting, in his book he blames all this on Ponny Shannon, saying he backed out. This is not the real story. The true version of what happened is in the Underworld captain by Captain Alex Shannon. Even more factual is the Capo’s story, the unedited manuscript before it was handed to David Leslie to adapt into The Underworld Captain. Alex Shannon has no need to exaggerate or lie, the man is a captain in the British Army, a well-respected man in both the Army and the criminal underworld.

William claims he got bored with the Shannons, they didn’t think like him, they didn’t have leading qualities’ no ambition.

So he went looking for a man he had met once or twice in prison, a man who had stepped in when William had  some trouble with a few men from Possil Park, Paul Ferris stepped in and asked William if everything was OK. The interference by Ferris made the men from Possil Park think twice before launching an attack on William.

Paul Ferris said to William, “if when you get out you are looking for work look me up”

William while with the Shannon’s had heard that Paul Ferris was making a name for himself; he was branching out on his own. William decided to  look up Paul Ferris, he did so and found Ferris at the Cottage bar in Shettleston.

Lobban approached Ferris asking for work and telling him he was on the run from prison. They went to Hamilton to a nightclub, Ferris pulled an old ploy and gave William a LSD tablet, and claimed to have taken one himself, they went and met Bobby Glover, Joe Hanlon and their girlfriends, we are told things were done to make William paranoid  as the acid tab kicked in, like Bobby and Joe would disappear then reappear, the paranoia was starting to take effect, William realised this and knew he had a .22 Beretta taped to his thigh, the paranoia kicked in and William decided to confess about the handgun, the gun had been showing that much a bulge that Ferris and Glover got onto the fact that William was carrying  a gun almost instantly, hence why he was given an LSD tab.

William took Ferris to the toilet and showed him the gun, Ferris looked at the gun, checked it, the gun was loaded and no safety was on.

This would have made Ferris think Lobban was inexperienced, no one would put a loaded handgun down their trousers without the safety locked in position, one wrong dance move and you would lose a chunk of your thigh.

William claims that in  May 1991 Paul Ferris embraced him as a brother. Think about this, Paul Ferris was in the middle of a war; he was having trouble with the Thompsons and had publicly slammed Thomas McGraw as a police informant.

He was under surveillance by Strathclyde police, who wanted to lock him up and an escaped prisoner turns up. Not the type of person an escaped prisoner would want to be around?

William was well known to Glasgow police, he had after all MASTERMINDED a break into a pub and had been a friend of another escaped prisoner Michael Healy.

Micheal Healy had escaped from HMP Shotts on the back of a butcher's van in 1987, he had been on his toes for 4 years, Micheal Healy had used William to play minor parts in robberies committed by Michael, so Micheal trusted him.

William went looking for his old friend, he didn’t know where Micheals safe house was so he approached Michaels mother, and Mrs Healy knew William Lobban but wouldn’t give Michael’s safe house out without first asking Michael.

William returned to Michaels mother and got the safe house address, Michael was holed up in a flat in Rutherglen over in the south of Glasgow.

William went to see Michael, while in conversation  Paul Ferris’s name came up, a few weeks’ earlier Paul Ferris had met Ian Blink  McDonald in the same nightclub in Hamilton that William had taken Ferris to.

Ian was on the run for the robbery he had committed along  Michael Healy and others in Torquay, Ian was asked if he was on the run from that robbery. Ian passed on Ferris inquiry to Michael Healy, that along with a fake letter that had been circulated by the Thompsons from a supposed proculator fiscal in Glasgow a Mr A Varnett added to the escapee’s Healy and McDonald’s paranoia.

While in Healy’s Flat Paul Ferris name was mentioned, Michael passed on to William what had been said and mentioned the letter and said to William," you want to watch what you are doing".

William left the flat and went straight to see Paul Ferris. Ferris, Ferris asked how big Mick was. Lobban told Ferris the his good friend Healy had been badmouthing him. I will add, Micheal Healy and Ian McDonald always assumed that paul Ferris had sent William to Micheals flat to enquire about what ws being said about him, this is not the case, William betrayed Micheal off his own back, he done this as a warped way of showing loyalty to Paul Ferris. Thinking his betrayal of Micheal would be welcomed, when in reality it showed Ferris, Glover and Hanlon what William ws capable off. Joe Hanlon instantly disagread with what William had done and wasnt slow in letting everyone know of his digust at William for this betrayal off Micheal.

Another observation is, everything William has written or spoke about on the subject of Hanlon and Glover, William has never spoke of his sadness that Joseph Hanlon was killed, he has spoke of how he was sad Bobby had to die, but never a mention of Joseph. Does this indicate William knew of Joseph's distrust and disgust at what he had done to Micheal?


Ferris demanded to know where Healy was living. Ferris went to get a gun with a silencer and William took Ferris to Healy’s  safe house in Rutherglen, William went up first, Michael let him in, William asked if he could use the toilet and when he went  down the hall he unlatched the lock  on the front door and let Ferris sneak into the flat.

Michael was shocked and surprised when Ferris came charging into the living room and shot a hole in Michaels Hi Fi, Michael was ordered to put his hands on his head, while Ferris interrogated him as to what had been said about him.

All through the interrogation Michael was looking at William with contempt and disgust, he had known William a lot Longer than Paul Ferris and was struggling to understand why William would inform on his whereabouts to Ferris, plus put him in a dangerous position.

All through the interrogation, William knew he was in trouble .. He kept saying to Ferris, “You will have to put one in his nut; we can’t leave this flat and leave him alive. He will come looking for us; Ferris wasn’t there to hurt Michael, all he wanted was to know the source of the person who had started the rumors.


Michael had a suitcase; in that suitcase was two shotguns, Ferris took the two shotguns because he knew if they left  the flat and Michael was armed he would have chased them both down the street.

William states that he knew Michael needed the guns for the robbery in Torquay, but Michael and Ian McDonald were on the run for that robbery at the time this happened in Michaels flat

Michael and Lobban were co accused on an armed robbery in 1986 Michael got ten years and William got six, Michael had escaped in 1987 in the back of a butcher's van and William escaped in March 1991. William had spent time with Shannon’s till late  May.

 Michael, Ian McDonald, James Healy, Robert Harper and Thomas Carrington had committed the robbery in the Nat West in Torquay in May 1991.

Michael had been on the run for 4 years and no one had been able to breach his security until his trusted friend William Lobban set him up, for a man he had only spent a few weeks with, a man he claims had embraced him as a brother after only knowing him for weeks.

This is where the tag Judas came from, Micheal Healy christened William Judas after he was betrayed by him.

In the Glasgow Curse William claims he was in Bobby Glovers house the night Arthur Thompson was killed, think about this. Here is a man who has just arrived on the scene a few months earlier.

He was on the run from prison, Ferris, Glover and Hanlon had only known him for 10 weeks max, yet they will plan a murder in front of him, without asking him to take part?

They were smart men, if Williams claims have to be believed, then we must assume that, If Ferris, Glover and Hanlon murdered Thompson, Jr, then they allowed a man who they had just watched betray a good friend  of his and demand he be killed, be witness to them planning a murder?

That doesn’t make sense; William burned his bridge as soon as he displayed his eagerness to betray Michael Healy. Ferris claims from that day he lost all trust in William, why would they allow him to witness something that he could use to betray them..

After Thompson, Jr was murdered William went to London, But then returned, he ended up in a flat in the Calton, he claimed in the serialisation of his book in the Daily Record that he met Thomas McGraw, he said McGraw claimed he had visited Ferris in prison and Ferris wanted William to take out Thompson Snr, he claims McGraw gave him a gun and a wad of cash?

But when the book was released the gun had disappeared from the book, why was this? Was it because it placed William with a gun before the murders of Glover and Hanlon?

He claimed McGraw had visited Ferris in prison, but it is well known that McGraw never visited Ferris in prison, they weren’t on speaking terms and prison records will reveal that no visit took place.

McGraw has never done prison visits, it wasn’t in his nature, he never handed over wads of money easily either, not without getting something for it and if he had given  William money and received nothing in return, he would have put William straight back in prison.

After the deaths of Bobby Glover and Joe Hanlon, William was the most wanted man in the UK. The police wanted to question him about both murders.

William insists that Paul Ferris put him in the frame for the Thompson murder, this is a wild exaggeration, Paul Ferris used a Special defense of incrimination, he incriminated William, Michael Healy and Johna MacKenzie. Incrimination has been used in Glasgow for years and criminals know it is used as a way of letting the judge and jury know there was  another police suspect in the case.

There has been thousand of cases were incrimination has been used, Williams uncles both used incrimination in trials, you only have to Google, “Special Defense  of Incrimination” and you will see how many times this is used. William is trying to  justify his actions by claiming that Ferris tried getting him in trouble, this might wash with people who don’t know the law, but William knows fine well that was not the case.

What else I have found is the discrepancies in the past articles William has given to the press, namely the News of the World in 1998 and 2005 concerning his arrest in London.

This has also changed in the book from a man dressed in John Lennon glasses, a poncho and a pork pie hat or sombrero, to a man dressed as a cyclist. In these articles he grabs a woman hostage and drags her down a lane, in his book he runs hides behind the woman. Which do we believe?

Once William is arrested, he claims he was questioned for 10 minutes on the murders of Bobby and Joe, but the police sent a report to the Proculator Fiscal naming William as a suspect in  both the murders of Bobby and Joe, along with another man John Morrison. So to compile a report he must have been questioned longer or Strathclyde Police were not professional enough nor were they interested in solving both murders?

William was the last person to see both men alive, he admits making that call.

Yet he speaks of nothing that was said between them that night.

He speaks  in past articles of Bobby not wanting to speak and Joe being in a hurry, they were going to see McGraw he claimed, this also does not fit, if William knew Joe Hanlon was angry at McGraw because he was a police informant, why did William take McGraw to his safe house in the Calton, surely the thought McGraw might give up his whereabouts must have crossed the master criminals mind?

Walter Norval in the New Faces of the British underworld DVD, claims Williams, uncle William was a good friend of his. Norval claims that William Manson told him he murdered both Bobby and Joe and that William was there, he claims after both men were murdered a bullet flew passed his head, Manson turned and William said SORRY, the gun went off by mistake, but Norval claims Manson was positive his nephew was going to kill him and Manson told Norval he was going to kill his nephew when he was released from prison.

Walter Norval on Billy Manson

Another thing in the book that isn’t accurate is the rot in Full Sutton. William claims he joined in the riot because another prisoner was being brutalised by prison staff.

This was true, But William had no part in starting the riot, but he did use it to his advantage and throw and ironing board through the staff room window and front of a member of staff, but his motive for doing so in front of the staff member was because he owed a large debt for heroin, he was using his whole canteen money on heroin , to the extent where he kept empty cerial boxes stored in his cell so other prisoners would think he was OK for canteen money and to hide the fact that all his money was going on drugs.

He took this chance to get a transfer and once again betrayed Michael Healy and got transferred owning a large drug debt that Michael had to settle, as it was Michael that vouched for him, after William agreed to stand as a defence witness in Michael’s trial and put all the blame on Paul  Ferris for committing the Torquay robbery, William appeared as witness at, carrying a bible and swearing an oath he was telling the truth, he told the court he was a born again Christian. He demanded that the court withhold his name and refer to him as only Mr A. WHY?

Witness Mr A

 It looks to us that William has been betraying people who classed him as friends all his life, he seems to be a con man.

The title the Glasgow curse gives the impression, William believes he was cursed by being born in Glasgow.

I can’t accept that, Glasgow is a great city with great people. William has spent more time living out of Glasgow than he did in it.

He isn’t now Glaswegian, so in my opinion he shouldn’t try knock a city he doesn’t know.

On his website he asks for family and loved ones of murder victims to come together and expose the Glasgow Curse.

This is another  thing that sticks inthe throats of honest Glaswegian’s, here is a man who for years has hidden in the shadows, paranoia ripping from his eyes, a man who has never once thought of picking up a phone or sending a letter to the family and loved ones of Bobby Glover and Joe Hanlon.

He could have helped both families with an explanation of what happened that night, but chose not to do so.

I think he should have called the book the JUDAS CURSE instead of the Glasgow Curse, as Glasgow isn’t as cursed as William Lobban seems to be.

One source who knew William well said, “William knows the amount of people he has betrayed all through his life, he thinks of no one but himself, if he is so innocent, why hide away for 22 years “

"Now  Williamcan con people who don’t know any better, he will never be looked upon as nothing more than a Judas to us in Glasgow."

The TRUTH is out there...........

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Reply with quote  #8 

Ferris claimed publicly that he felt young Arthur had set him up and grassed him when he and his girlfriend went to live in a so-called safe house in Rosthesay, a luxurious home owned by Thompson Senior on the Isle of Bute: this was no more than speculation and without a single shred of evidence to back up such an accusation. Whatever the truth, one has to ask themselves how on earth young Arthur was able to send armed police to a house in Rothesay when he was in prison serving an eleven-year prison sentence?

William (Judas) Lobban

Arthur (Fat-Boy) Thompson was arrested along with Thomas Bagan and John (Jonah) McKenzie in the early part of 1985. This clearly shows that Fat-Boy was not in prison custody at the time.

*UPDATE (Paul Ferris was arrested on December 12th 1984)

Its always better to have independent proof at hand to dispel yet another myth by William (Judas) Lobban


The TRUTH is out there...........
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