Glasgow gangster’s brother’s killer gets 17 years

A MAN has been convicted of the brutal murder of the brother of one of Glasgow’s most notorious gangsters.
The trial was heard at Glasgow High Court. Picture: John DevlinThe trial was heard at Glasgow High Court. Picture: John Devlin
The trial was heard at Glasgow High Court. Picture: John Devlin

Thomas Main, 41, was ordered to serve at least 17 years and six months in prison for killing 55-year-old Francis McGrow – the brother of Tam “The Licencee” McGraw who died in 2007.

The High Court in Glasgow heard that Mr McGrow was stabbed in the back three times by Main, who described himself to police as his best friend.

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As Mr McGrow lay helpless on the floor of his living room at 47 Hermiston Road, Springboig, Glasgow, Main stabbed him a further 37 times in a frenzied attack.

Mr McGrow’s heart, lungs and major arteries were all damaged in the assault.

No motive for the killing came out in court.

Judge Lord Armstrong told Main: “This was a vicious attack when your victim was lying on his back and unable to defend himself.

“There are no reasons which could possibly justify the taking of another’s life as you did.

“Your release will be a matter for the parole board. I have no doubt that Francis McGrow’s family have been deeply affected by this. Nothing I can do can mitigate their loss.

“Given the fact you used a large bladed weapon, inflicted over 40 penetrative wounds and this took place in the victim’s own home, the sentence will be one of 17 years and six month.”

As he was led away to begin his sentence, Main waved to members of his family who were sitting in the public benches.

The court heard that Mr McGrow was murdered sometime between October 26 and 27, last year, by Main - a man he considered a friend.

Main was out on bail at the time.

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Mr McGrow had allowed Main to stay in his home and use it as a bail address.

After carrying out his attack, Main disposed of the knife and tried to hide his jeans which had a fine spray of Mr McGrow’s blood on them.

He then travelled into the city and made a call from a phone box in Gallowgate, Glasgow, saying that Mr McGrow had been murdered.

The court heard that when Main was told by his brother that police had found the knife he had thrown in the river and also the bloodstained jeans he put his head in his hands and said: “That’s me f***ed.”

When interviewed by police Main tried to claim that Mr McGrow had been the target of an underworld hit because of who his brother was.

Main also told detectives: “Francis was my best pal.”

He denied murdering him and said: “He’s my pal. I wouldn’t murder anybody. I’ve not got the bottle in me to murder anyone.”

Main then added: “It was probably a hit on him. That’s it, because of Tam, his brother. You know his brother Tam McGraw “The Licensee.”

Advocate depute Adrian Cottam, prosecuting, told the court that Main had a number of convictions for dishonesty and drugs offences.

Mr Cottam added: “He also has a conviction for assault with intent to rob for which he received a 16-month sentence and assault and robbery for which he received a 26-month sentence.”