Everybody needs a car to get around in, including career criminals. Take a look back at the stories of five of the world’s most infamous criminals and their cars.
Bonnie and Clyde’s 1934 Ford V8 B-400 Sedan
Not afraid to shoot at anyone who got in the road of their robbing, kidnapping and murdering sprees, loved-up couple Bonnie and Clyde had a 1934 Ford V8 B-400 convertible that, ironically, would end up riddled with bullet holes – 130 or so, in fact.
The machine they were using to speed away from yet another, but this time only attempted, escape when the law caught up with them has been put on display in various places across the States. It is now a feature of Whiskey Pete’s Casino in Primm, Nevada.
Al Capone’s 1928 killer Cadillac sedan
There’s a long-standing rumor that Al Capone’s Cadillac, laden with impressive armor and bulletproof glass, ended up in the hands of FDR – that’s the 32nd US president, Franklin D Roosevelt – after Capone’s empire fell and his property was seized. This myth has since been busted, but its believability paints a picture of how much Capone – bootlegging, prostitution-running and illegal-gambling dude that he was – was feared and respected.
Al had clout and cash, that’s for sure. His riches, which peaked when he was 33 years old and headed for the penitentiary, would have made him a billionaire today.
The Great Train Robber’s Lotus Cortina
Bruce Reynolds, using money from his productive criminal career, picked up a beautiful and zippy brand-new Lotus Cortina in 1963. In that same year, he led a 15-strong gang – including the more famous Ronnie Biggs, who lived in exile for 36 years after escaping prison – on a heist for the history books: the Great Train Robbery.
Using information plied from informants, Bruce and his crew meticulously planned the moonlight interception and robbery of the London to Glasgow mail train. Together, they scored £3 million in bank notes. The Cortina, impounded for over 20 years, was eventually sold in 2009 to a collector for a six-figure sum.
OJ Simpson’s slow-speed 1993 Ford Bronco
It was the slow-speed chase that captured America’s attention: tens of LAPD cars in slow pursuit of ‘The Juice’ driving serenely along the freeways of Los Angeles. Some 95 million people from across the country and around the world tuned in to watch live as OJ – after being asked to surrender to police for the awful murder of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson – went rogue in slow-motion. After the subdued chase, OJ was eventually arrested at his home.
For a time, the white Ford Bronco was available for hire as a kind of messed-up party decoration, but today it’s housed in the Alcatraz East Crime Museum in the humble town of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
Suge Knight’s 1996 BMW 750iL
After a lovely night out at the Mike Tyson boxing bout, big-time rapper Tupac Shakur was in record producer Suge Knight’s BMW, stopped at a red light at the intersection of East Flamingo Road and Koval Lane in Las Vegas, when bullets from a Glock blasted through the panels and windows. Six days later, Tupac Shakur died from his injuries. The culprits have never been charged, though theories abound – as described in the film Biggie & Tupac and numerous pieces of investigative journalism.