He went from Oxford graduate to one of the world's most wanted men but sadly, Mr Nice himself Howard Marks, took the final journey in his adventurous roller-coaster life yesterday, following a battle with inoperable bowel cancer. He was 70 years old.
One of the world's most infamous cannabis smugglers, Welshman Marks began his 'career' after graduating from his physics degree at Oxford and was imprisoned twice; first in the UK, only to be acquitted at the Old Bailey in 1980, and again following an arrest by the DEA in Spain in 1988 which saw him extradited to Florida and sentenced to 25 years imprisonment in the US. He was released for good behaviour in 1995 and stood for parliament in the UK General Election of 1997 as a single-ticket independent candidate intent on reforming cannabis laws. Having gone straight, Marks extensively toured with one-man shows detailing his life and experiences as well as writing his memoirs, in the shape of the bestseller Mr Nice, which was later turned into a film of the same name starring Rhys Ifans.