Arrest: Navinder Singh Sarao is accused of making £26.7million by 'spoofing' the stock market from his parents' semi in Hounslow, west London
John Betjeman would have loved the Hound of Hounslow, the suburban shares trader accused of crashing the Wall Street stock market from his bedroom in a West London semi.
The Bard of Metroland knew that behind the lace curtains of Acacia Avenue lay eight million stories which could give the Naked City more than a run for its money.
Navinder Singh Sarao is just one of them, a 36-year-old man still living with his parents who is allegedly responsible for wiping a trillion dollars off global share prices.
Hounslow's answer to Gordon Gekko is said to have trousered £26.7 million without leaving his three-bedroom home. We're not talking a Fifth Avenue penthouse here.
Sarao is reported to have made half a million pounds on a single day in May 2010, when the New York exchange went into meltdown. The American authorities have also accused him of creating computer programs to rig the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and he is now facing extradition on fraud charges.
Yet to the outside world he was a 'normal' young man from a respectable, religious family of moderate means. Neighbours were astonished to learn about his supposed wealth. Home is a £350,000 semi, with a battered Vauxhall Corsa in the drive.
He is alleged to have outwitted the sharpest operators on Wall Street, setting up an offshore company in the Caribbean to milk the markets.
If he's extradited to the States and convicted, he faces 380 years in prison. Don't you just love American jail sentences? With time off for good behaviour, he could be out in 300 years.
Pictured: The hunt is on for the £26million allegedly pocketed by British trader Navinder Singh Sarao. He is pictured, circled, at his high school prom in 1995
Self-styled inner-city sophisticates may sneer at Semi Detached Suburban Mr James, but all the best stories come from Beyond The North Circular Road.
Uxbridge, a few miles from Hounslow, is the home of Domenico 'The Professor' Rancadore, a Sicilian mafioso enforcer who has been holed up in a detached bungalow for more than 20 years, where he fled to Britain to escape justice.
He was convicted in his absence of Mafia membership and extortion and sentenced to seven years in prison.
Neighbours knew him as Marco Skinner, who lived a private existence with his British-born wife Ann. One said: 'He always seemed like a nice guy. He was very well dressed and had nice cars on the drive. I actually thought he must be a chauffeur.' He's still there, too. When the Italian authorities eventually tracked him down he successfully resisted extradition on yuman rites grounds, which might give some comfort to the Hound of Hounslow.
It's as easy to hide in plain sight in suburbia as it is to melt into the madding crowd in big cities.
Sex'n'drugs'n'rock'roll isn't confined to the seedier parts of Soho, either. One of Britain's best-known knocking shops, run by celebrity madam Cynthia Payne was situated in the sleepy South London suburb of Streatham.
And only recently, a Nigerian man was found dead at the bottom of a swimming pool during a 'James Bond meets Pussy Galore' swingers' party at a house in Radlett, on the North London/Herts border. He was one of 35 revellers enjoying the 007-themed evening, which featured a roulette wheel, a woman covered in gold paint, like Shirley Eaton in Goldfinger, and chocolate replicas of the weapon from The Man With The Golden Gun.
Is that a chocolate pistol in your pocket, or are you just pleased to see me?
The property boasts a sex dungeon, a pole-dancing arena and a 'hot-blooded' sauna. The Alice In Wonderland night is especially popular.
Who knew? Quite a few people, as it turned out. When I mentioned the story to one of the lads at White Hart Lane, he said he used to drink with the bloke who ran the orgies.
Still, nothing surprises those of us who live in Daily Mail Land. We're still coming to terms with the news that our local vet was raided by the police after they discovered he was off his head most nights as a result of injecting himself with drugs designed for sick animals.
Takes all sorts, I suppose. We did wonder why he had such shiny hair.
The enduring myth about suburbia is that everybody is like Margo and Jerry, from The Good Life, or Howard and Hilda, from Ever Decreasing Circles. These days Margo would be covered in gold paint, skinny dipping with a bloke dressed as Blofeld, while Jerry would be glued to his laptop of an evening, crashing the Singapore stock exchange.
Howard would be swinging from the chandeliers with Martin's wife Ann, and Hilda would be high on Bob Martins and having an affair with the local Mafia boss.
As I said, Betjeman would have loved it.
Gaily into Hounslow station, Runs the red electric train, With a thousand eager punters, Up for a night of sex and pain.
Past the tap, tap, tap Of the laptop computers, Robbing Wall Street once again, A throbbing throng of tired commuters Heading home down Uxbridge Lane.
Shangri Las and Mon Reposes, Concealing their forbidden fun, Snorting cocaine up their noses, And bondage games, With Joan Hunter Dunn.
Madonna angered her fans with a gushing tribute to Margaret Thatcher on Instagram
Madonna makes a big booby
Madonna posted a quote from Margaret Thatcher on Instagram:
'If you set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time, and you would achieve nothing.'
She added the caption: 'Thank you Margaret Thatcher! #unapologetic #rebelheart.'
In a heartbeat, the homosexual lobby was howling with outrage over the singer's support for the Tory Prime Minister who introduced the hated Section 28, which banned the promotion of gay lifestyles in schools.
After being bombarded with abuse, Madonna, who was voted one of the biggest gay icons of all time, backed down and agreed to delete it.
The alternative was having hundreds of homosexuals picketing her concerts and screaming:
Madgie, Madgie, Madgie!
OUT, OUT, OUT!
Here we go loop de loop
As the columnist who gave you Two Jags and Call Me Dave, among others, I've always loved nicknames.
The writers of Minder came up with some of the best, such as Two Tone (Tony Anthony), Larchlap (a well-known fence) and Self-Inflicted (a petty crook played by Ronnie Fraser, who gave himself a facial scar to impress the chaps). There was also a character in New Tricks called Vernon Murnaghan, known to all as Mouthful.
This week Ken Bruce read out a listener's letter on his excellent Radio 2 morning show. It concerned a man called Campbell Baxter, who answers to the name of Two Soups.
Speaking of the homosexual lobby, plans for Europe's first rainbow zebra crossing in support of gay rights may have to be abandoned.
There are fears that the multi-coloured crossing could give dementia sufferers hallucinations.
You couldn't make it up.
The design was unveiled during Gay Pride week in Totnes, Devon. Mat Price, of the group Proud2Be, dismissed objections from the Alzheimer's Society and complained: 'If this keeps going backwards we will not be the first in Europe to do this, we will be the 40th.'
A rainbow zebra crossing is the kind of thing you expect to find in Islington, or one of the other loony London boroughs.
But Totnes? It's hardly a walk on the wild side.
Most nights before I go to bed, I like to watch the paper review on Sky News.
On Wednesday it was the turn of former Home Secretary 'Jackboots' Jacqui Smith and the LBC radio presenter Iain Dale.
I had to do a double-take. They must have been separated at birth. If Dale had a Smith-style syrup, they'd be taken for identical twins.
I had to do a double-take. They must have been separated at birth. If Dale had a Smith-style syrup, they'd be taken for identical twins
Former Tory treasurer Lord Ashcroft claims Nigel Farage models himself on Boycie from Only Fools And Horses.
Ashcroft meant it as an insult, but I'm sure Farage will take it as a compliment. Being compared to Boycie could be worth thousands of extra votes in marginal Thanet, which includes Margate, venue for the famous Nags Head's Jolly Boys Outing.
Nigel Farage admits to 'a bit of skinny-dipping' in his youth
There have been at least four different inquiries into the activities of Jimmy Savile, who remains dead.
A judge has been brought over from New Zealand to chair the Paedos In High Places investigation into 'historic' sex allegations against the late Cyril Smith and the late Leon Brittan.
Meanwhile, Greville Janner is still alive.
An RAF Chinook helicopter accidentally dropped a supply of emergency rations in a field at the side of the M4.
Well, they said it was an accident. It could have been a dry run for the next time the police decide to close the motorway in both directions for hours on end, stranding tens of thousands of motorists, while they turn the inside lane into a 'crime scene'.