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Charlie Croker finishes a 2-year sentence for petty theft and is released from a prison that is virtually run by Bridger, a fellow inmate and superior criminal. Lorna, Charlie's girl friend, picks him up in a stolen car and takes him to a luxurious hotel and there Charlie receives a message from Madame Beckerman, the widow of one of Charlie's associates. Beckerman has left Charlie the foolproof plans for the robbery of a shipment of gold being transported from Red China to Turin, Italy. Charlie breaks into his old prison and solicits the aid of the patriotic Bridger by suggesting to him that the gold will help the British economy. He then recruits the rest of his gang, including Professor Peach, a computer expert and inmate of a mental hospital. Despite the attempts of the Mafia, headed by the sinister Altabani, to foil the plan, which involves the use of three Mini-Coopers and the sabotaging of the computer in the Turin traffic control center to cause a massive traffic jam, the robbery is successful. The bullion is transferred to a bus headed for Switzerland via twisting mountain roads; but while Bridger and his fellow inmates celebrate the completion of the robbery, the bus skids, careens toward the precipice, and suspends teetering on a cliff. The men dare not move and upset the balance, but Charlie quickly formulates a plan to save his men, himself, and the gold.