Today the Havering Daily had the exclusive opportunity to speak with a friend of Charles Salvador, formally known as Charles Bronson.
Mr Salvador has spent 45 years in prison 39 of which have been in solitary confinement. Mr Salvador has written a message speaking out against knife crime and the use of drugs.
Friend Rod Harrelson told the Havering Daily:
‘Charlie hates drugs. He’s totally against the use of drugs. He spent five years in Broadmoor being given ‘liquid cosh’ an anti psychotic drug for no reason before they realised he wasn’t insane.
‘Charlie is now 67 years old and as we speak he is still in solitary confinement. He does so much charity work, and helps so many people. Last year we raised £12,500. We gave money to the Salvation Army, we sponsor children’s charities. All this always goes unnoticed.’
Mr Salvador was keen to put his message forward about knife crime and through his friend said:
‘Put down your knife and pick up a paintbrush. Why destroy when you can create!
‘Well kids the best advice I can give you is to respect yourself, be thankful you have your health and look after your fitness and then you can have a good life ahead of you.
‘But trust me, once you go down the road of drugs you will destroy everything, you will not just destroy yourself but you will destroy your mother, your father, aunts and uncles, in fact all your family.
‘The only person that gains from that road is the drug dealer. You are the one that loses out while the drug dealers get richer. Drugs are evil, more evil than anything in this planet, believe me stay away from drugs, stay away from gangs who think it’s hard to carry a blade and stab someone because all they really are, are cowards.
‘Most people have disagreements but don’t stab them. If you must, go to a gym and put gloves on. Have a punch up, then skate hands afterwards. Respect each other, that’s what life is all about. But when you start putting holes into people, you are going to end up in prison, spend years in these horrible places like I have.
‘Another waste of life and that of your victim. Look at my life inside, forty five years I have spent in these hellholes. The reason I have spent so long in prison is because I have rebelled against the system.
‘Nowadays there can be a 15 or 16 year old kid walking down the street, minding their own business, when they come into contact with a gang of youths, the end result can often be that they are stabbed to death. For what?
They are picking on innocent kids, most are not even gang members. If gangs want to fight let them fight each other end of story. But why do they have to use knives? It’s because deep down they are really cowards and bullies.
‘Stay away from drugs, stay away from knives.’
‘There seems no end to it. Everyday it happens. It’s getting worse. More brutal, more madness. It’s got to stop, so many lives destroyed. The dead buried, the families live on in pain and misery.
‘The murderers come to prison, their families live on in pain and misery. Nobody wins, everybody loses, the pain continues. So why is it happening? How does it stop?
‘Let the young lads know the future of carrying a knife.
‘A prison cell, a hole in the earth, years of emptiness. Years of misery. 10 years, 20 years, 30 years. You come in a boy and go out with grey hair and a bent back. Your family grow old and will die whilst your inside. You’ve spent all your adult life locked up like a mad dog. There’s no glamour in prison life.
‘Let’s face it, only a coward needs a knife. Lay down your knives. Don’t mess it up’