I had a most interesting Revit User Group experience tonight. The topic, a panel discussion on “Shared Coordinates”, was good and prompted some great discussion but it was what happened towards the end which made it bizarre.
We weren’t in our usual venue, tonight hosted at a street level architectural office in the Auckland CBD. As the formal part of the event was wrapping up a frail, small framed old man wandered into the office wheeling a bicycle. He seemed a bit confused, lost, and we asked who he was looking for? He said ‘the bus stop’ so I took him aside to see what it was about.
He was nice, but seemed a bit muddled. I got his name and where he lived but it was about 30km from the city. He said had cycled in, leaving home at 04:00 that morning and it was about 20:00 by now. I had arrived a bit early for the meeting and walked down to the viaduct to see the new America’s Cup boat and remembered him wandering around then.
I noticed him because he was walking rather slowly, pushing a bike, wearing a leather jacket and flat cloth cap with loads of badges and several ANZAC poppies pinned to it. If you want to build a picture, imagine old man Steptoe, slightly better dressed and with a neatly trimmed beard, pushing a bike.
Now, several hours later he was still in the same area, seemingly lost. While talking to him I noticed the hat badges referred to Paraplegic games, various local charities and some international associations (Inc. Russian and Japanese). Seemed best not to let him go out on the street (dark, no bike lights) so we called the Police to see if they could assist.
It took a while for them to arrive and while waiting he started telling me some rather wild stories. They were all a bit fractured, random, but included meeting with prominent figures (former All Blacks, Prime Ministers & Mayors), being in prison (our highest security one) and a life which was rather interesting to say the least. The Police turned up and managed to get enough ID to establish where he lived (alone) and decided the best course of action was to take him home. They arranged a van (needed to take the bike) and the last I saw was him being driven off home, safe & sound.
“Once, he was New Zealand's most wanted man, a bank robber whose weapon of choice was a .44 Magnum. Now, he's a pensioner who rides a bicycle.
Leslie Maurice Green is now enjoying collecting a pension, after years as New Zealand's most infamous bank robber. The 71-year-old career criminal has been a free man since September , having served what was at the time the longest sentence handed down for armed robbery.
Since 1954, when, as a 17-year-old, he was first charged with a crime, Green has amassed 46 convictions that have carried sentences totalling 116 years. Although many of the sentences were to be concurrent, papers show Green has spent 30 years of his life in prison…”
There is a bit more, and some more recent photos, in this 2015 article:
“Once listed as the country's most wanted man, Green was a villain's villain. A safecracker, in the old tradition, in the 1970s he blew a jeweller's vault making off with goods worth $105,000. Quick reference to the Reserve Bank's inflation calculator shows the haul would be worth $1.2 million in today's money…”
Vale Les, He looked frail, glad we got him home that night.
One of the last "old school villains" and a legendary figure in the New Zealand criminal underworld has died.
Leslie Maurice Green, an infamous bank robber, died in hospital this morning after his friends Arthur Taylor and John Murphy found him in an emaciated state two days ago…
"In 1980, Marion Granville walked out of her Naenae home in Lower Hutt and never came back. Her disappearance has been linked to some of the biggest names in New Zealand crime, but 40 years later, it remains unsolved."
"While serving a life sentence, Sneller could not get it out of his mind that bank robber and hitman Lesley Maurice Green, who in the underworld was known as “Old Man”, was responsible for his partner’s disappearance. Police would later come to the same conclusion."