Armed robbery gang jailed

A gang of armed robbers who struck across the country, including at Santander in Cleveleys, have been jailed.
A gang of armed robbers who struck across the country, including at Santander in Cleveleys, have been jailed.

A gang of armed robbers who stole more than £50,000 from a bank in Cleveleys – as part of a terrifying crime spree – have been jailed.

Six men have been sentenced to a total of 58 years behind bars for their parts in a string of violent offences across the north of England.

The “sophisticated” gang monitored the movements of vans used to transport money from cash machines before striking in a series of violent robberies.

At around 7pm on October 10, 2013, members of the Salford-based group made off with £52,000 when they stole four boxes from an ATM at Santander, on Victoria Road West, in Cleveleys.

Police said at the time one of the gang used a weapon to threaten 
security guards while another used a circular saw to gain 
access to the cash machine.

Lee Seddon, 36, of Bolton, Stephen Farrell, 35, of Salford, Phillip Fisher, 32, of Bolton and Jordan Wheeldon, of Salford, were all jailed at Preston Crown Court on Wednesday.

The court heard they, along with Michael Bond, 32, of Manchester and Robert Pinkney, 32, of Salford, who were locked up in December, were part of a dangerous gang that also carried out raids in Preston, Stoke- on-Trent and Middlesbrough.

The offences took place between 2011 and 2013.

Brett Gerrity, prosecuting, said: “These men were part of a Salford-based organised crime gang who used sophisticated methods to monitor the movements of cash in transit vans, before stealing substantial amounts of money from terrified staff.

“Members of the gang, of which Seddon was a pivotal member, had committed similar offences in the past.

“There is no doubt they posed a significant risk of serious harm to security staff who were simply going about their daily duties.

“We have worked closely with the police in Lancashire, Teeside and Staffordshire to build strong cases against all the defendants resulting in them pleading guilty to the charges they faced.

CCTV and forensic evidence proved they all played significant roles in the series of violent armed robberies.”

Seddon was sentenced to 13 years and two months for two counts of conspiracy to rob and one count of dangerous driving.

Farrell got 10 years for conspiracy to rob, while Fisher was jailed for 12 years for two counts of conspiracy to rob.

Wheeldon got five years and four months in jail for conspiracy to rob.

Bond was sentenced in December 2013 to 10 years and eight months imprisonment for conspiracy to rob and aggravated vehicle taking.

At the same time, Pinkney was jailed for six years and eight months for conspiracy to rob.