Retired bank robbers who come out of retirement for one last job run an incredibly high risk of complications, says Crime Scene, the trade magazine for professional law breakers, blaggers and briefs, which studied this increasingly popular trend.
According to its survey of 1000 criminals who'd been tempted back to do one more heist, almost all of them ran into dramatic complications which they hadn't envisaged. Amazingly, in practically every case, the bank robber gets away without being caught but things are never the same again. Often their whole outlook on life is changed, and they realise something about themselves, and their relationship with their friends, that they didn't know before.
According to the survey, the most common causes of things that could go wrong are Working with Amateurs, Infiltration by an Undercover Cop and Unanticipated Large Public Events - often all three. Inexplicably, many professionals allowed themselves to work in a volatile amateur - often a headcase given to emotional excesses at inappropriate times - even when they have suspicions about them right from the start. Many regret that they didn't conduct a through due diligence research on all members of their gang, which would reveal that an under cover cop had infiltrated their gang. With a little online research the gang could also have discovered that a parade, or a large sporting event, was about to take place on the streets on the day of their robbery. This makes navigating the streets very difficult after a robbery and often forces wheelmen to divert their getaway car down a back alley or across the pavement, where they will inevitably demolish somebody's flower stall or a stack of cardboard boxes.
Ironically, most criminals who came back for just one last job cite money as their main motivation, but in 99 percent of cases they don't get paid. One retired criminal, played by Robert Carlysle in the film Angel, come back for one last job because he was "disgusted by what's happened in Thatcher's Britain", but it's thought that he was an exception. Very few bank robbers are high minded socialists, says the report, but they are more often loveable rogues with a heart of gold.
However, their judgement remains terrible. "Criminals really must be wary of being lured out of retirement for one last job," said the report, "no matter how tempting or well conceived the idea, or angry you are at the way Thatcher has ruined Britain. Things always get complicated, the job will go wrong and life will never be the same again."