Three men have been sentenced to a total of 27 years in prison for committing robberies across England and Wales, including in Downend, South Gloucestershire that targeted security guards carrying cash.
The group, who are from Merseyside and Cheshire, all pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to rob at the first day of their trail on July 30th.
An investigation into the organised crime group was launched following the robbery of a cash box by three men from a security guard visiting the Leominster branch of Morrison’s supermarket on 21 June, 2010.
Before this, on 10 June 2010, the group targeted a guard at the Blackhorse Esso garage in Downend. A cash box was snatched by a man from a security guard attempting to replenish an ATM outside the premises.
As so many offences had been committed across different force West Mercia lead the investigation to convict. Inquiries into these crimes led officers to link them with three other incidents that had taken place in the preceding months:
On the 19th of February 2010, a stolen seven-tonne, flatbed lorry was used to breach a wall of a cash depot on the Queensway Meadows Industrial Estate in Newport and they stole a large number of coins from inside.
And in Wiltshire on the evening of March 8th 2010, a stolen Ford Focus was driven through the glass doors of the Halifax branch in Chippenham to gain access to the front area of the building and three men got out and stole cash being delivered for loading into a cash machine.
All three men pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to rob between January and June 2010. At Worcester Crown Court the Judge John Cavell sentenced them to the following:
• Christopher Scully, aged 44, of Charlton Close, Palacefields, Runcorn, was sentenced to nine and a half years imprisonment.
• Wesley Owens, aged 32, of Balfour Street, St Helens, was sentenced to nine years imprisonment.
• Kevin McLoughlin, aged 32, of Westdale Road, Liverpool, was sentenced to eight and a half years imprisonment.