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UK: Notorious British criminal could be free in weeks: lawyer

24 Apr 2009 3:22 AM

RONNIE BIGGS .. one of Britain's most notorious criminals .. who helped carry out the 1963 Great Train Robbery .. could be released in weeks.

BIGGS was jailed for 30 years in 1964 .. but escaped from prison in a daring break-out soon after and spent 30 years on the run .. much of it in Brazil .. before returning to Britain in 2001 to hand himself in.

The 79-year-old is currently in the hospital wing of Norwich prison in eastern England .. and his son MICHAEL says he has suffered repeated strokes and heart attacks.

Following a parole hearing BIGGS' lawyer says he's confident BIGGS will be free in time to celebrate his 80th birthday in August.

The ultimate decision on whether he can be freed rests with Justice Secretary JACK STRAW.

AAP RTV goc/psm/