Chief superintendant Ralph Mason who had been with the force over thirty years gathered a team together.
“Gentlemen we have a gang here who we need to apprehend. I want these men caught and quick; someone must know them; get your informants on the job; I want everyone working around the clock on this one. Two men are in hospital, one with a serious head wound the other with several broken ribs. Hopefully we can interview him later this afternoon and see what information he can give us.’ “The other man is in theatre right now with a blood clot on his brain, we could be looking at a potential murder investigation as well as a robbery here.’
“Detective sergeant Robert Black you will lead this team;
“This is “Operation Payback” no one can get away with five million pounds without leaving a trail for us to follow.’
“I will get on this right away Gov’
Rob Black took Chris Lorrimer, Peter Wilson, and Ken Kipper Heron, with him as they went off to Manchester general hospital to interview Gordon Philips one of the security men. The other man Graeme Smith unbeknownst to them was the insider.
They arrived at the hospital and made their way to the reception where they asked if they could speak to the head consultant.
“I’m sorry sir replied Ann Burdis but Mr Bertram is in Theatre at the moment.’
“Look is it possible to speak to Mr Gordon Philips; he was one of the men injured yesterday in the Robbery on Brook Hill.
Rob stood scratching the top of his head as he waited whilst the receptionist made a call.
“Someone will be with you in a moment sir.’
Thank you replied Rob as he paced up and down the corridor with the other two following him.’
“Christ do they think that I have all day said Rob Black as he waited.’
“Can we get you a coffee sir there’s a machine over there?’
“No but you can get you’re selves one and sit down as your making me nervous.’
Kipper Heron went to the machine and inserted some coins then brought over three coffee’s they sat next to the exit doors waiting; chatting amongst them selves Chris turned to Peter Wilson and asked him if he could speak with Billy Strong.
Billy was a great informant; he managed to come up with all kinds of information from his sources which he would never reveal to Peter but proved invaluable.’
“Well if anyone knows something Billy will.’
They had been sitting for over ten minutes when a man approached them.
Mr Black I am Alan Bertram Chief consultant at this hospital.
Rob took his hand out of his pocket and shook the hand of the consultant.
“Listen Mr Bertram is there any chance of speaking to the two men who were in the security van robbery yesterday?’
Well I’m afraid to tell you that Mr Smith died just moments ago he had a massive blood clot on his brain and we were unable to save him I’m afraid.
“What about Philips, can we speak with him. This is now a murder investigation as well as a robbery.’
“You can speak with Mr Philips but only for a few minutes; he has a punctured lung from a one of the ribs that was broken in the assault. This man suffered a terrible