The BBC have axed gangster Kenneth Noye from the second series of The Gold – its hit drama about the 1983 Brink’s-Mat robbery.
The decision follows fierce criticism that the first series glamorised the violent killer.
The corporation came under fire for portraying Noye – who went on to murder a 21-year-old in a road rage attack 13 years after the robbery – as a ‘handsome class warrior’ .
Scottish heart-throb actor Jack Lowden played Noye and won rave reviews for his performance.
A source close to the show said: ‘Work has started on the second series of The Gold, and there was a big surprise not to see Jack back.
‘But then it transpired that the whole character has been axed.
‘There is a view that Noye was totally glamorised and this overshadowed the rest of the story.
‘Relatives of his victims were also very upset about it all and the BBC clearly did not want to take the risk of more of those accusations.
‘Jack very much made the show but there’s just too many politics involved with including him again.
‘But viewers are going to be really surprised – it seems like a very odd decision. Instead, it will focus on the rest of the gang and the aftermath of it all.’
Gary Cameron, the uncle of Stephen Cameron, who Noye killed years in a road-rage attack on the M25 in 1996, 13 years after the Brink’s Mat robbery, lambasted the BBC for portraying Noye as ‘some kind of a good guy when he is a cold-blooded murderer’.
A friend of Noye, who was released from jail in 2019 after serving 19 years from Cameron’s murder, claimed the gangster was ‘over the moon’ with Lowden’s portrayal, and that people now approach him in the street and ask to shake his hand.
The Gold followed the story of the Brink’s-Mat heist, which remains the largest robbery ever committed in the UK, with the gang making off with more than £26 million – the equivalent to more than £93 million today – in gold, cash, and diamonds.
It also starred Hugh Bonneville as DCI Brian Boyce, the Met detective who led the investigation, and Dominic Cooper as Edwyn Cooper, a solicitor who helped launder the gang’s loot.
Despite the initial success of the robbery, many of those involved were brought to justice.
Noye was charged with handling stolen gold and conspiracy to evade VAT and was jailed for 14 years in 1986. Filming for the second series began this month. It is expected to be screened at the end of the year.