THE life and hard times of Charles Bronson - dubbed Britain's most violent prisoner - is to be made into a film.
But pressure groups have reacted angrily to the plan by movie makers to dramatise the story of the man from Ellesmere Port, showing how his troubled childhood played a part in creating a 'monster'.
Norman Brennan, of the Victims of Crime Trust, said: 'When I joined the police force 23 years ago it was always the accepted belief that crime doesn't pay. Today the truth is that not only does it pay, but it pays the criminal well.'
Bronson was jailed for seven years for armed robbery in 1974 but following a number of violent outbursts his sentence has been increased several times and he has now spent more than 20 years in solitary confinement.
Gangster Dave Courtney has reportedly been approached to star in the film and other actors said to be under consideration by the scriptwriters include former soccer hardman Vinnie Jones, who starred in the hit film Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, and Ray Winstone.
In February last year Bronson, who changed his name by deed poll from Michael Peterson, was handed a life sentence for taking a prison teacher hostage.
He is still considered one of Britain's most dangerous prisoners and won't be eligible for parole until 2010, although he has been granted leave to appeal his life sentence and is waiting for a full hearing.
In June this year 48-year-old Bronson tied the knot with his Bengali dancer bride, Saira Reham, 31, in a ceremony in Woodhill prison near Milton Keynes.
The couple toasted their wedding vows with apple juice before Bronson was led back to his solitary confinement cell.
In recent years, thanks to massive publicity and his own website, he has become a cult figure for his maverick attitude towards the prison system and his hardline views on a range of subjects in the world outside.
Last year he published his book Legends co-written with author Stephen Richards, which is his own guide to who's who in the underworld.
And he also has his own video called Sincerely Yours which publishers claim features shocking unseen footage of fights reportedly filmed inside Winston Green Prison, Birmingham.