Friday, 11 March 2016

The head of the Flying Squad says people should not feel sympathy for the men who he described as "career, callous criminals".
20:58, UK,Wednesday 09 March 2016
Five members of a gang involved in the £14m Hatton Garden jewel heist have been jailed for a total of 34 years.
The raid carried out over the Easter bank holiday weekend last year in the heart of London's diamond district was the biggest burglary in English history.
The thieves used an industrial drill to break into the vault at Hatton Garden Safety Deposit and stole cash, gold and precious gems, two-thirds of which is still missing.
Ringleaders John "Kenny" Collins, 75, of Bletsoe Walk, Islington; Daniel Jones, 61, of Park Avenue, Enfield; Terry Perkins, 67, of Heene Road, Enfield, were each sentenced to seven years, of which they will serve half.
The group's oldest member Brian Reader, 77, of Dartford Road, Dartford, dubbed the "Master" by his co-conspirators, had also been due to be sentenced.
Silhouettes of men stood at a bar
However, he fell ill in Belmarsh prison and after suffering a second stroke was deemed unfit to appear in court. He will be sentenced at a later date.
Reader and the other three ringleaders pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary last September.
Of the other gang members, Carl Wood of Elderbeck Close, Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, and William Lincoln of Winkley Street, Bethnal Green, east London, were convicted of conspiracy to commit burglary and conspiracy to conceal, convert or transfer criminal property, after a trial at Woolwich Crown Court.
Wood was jailed for six years and Lincoln to seven years.
Plumber Hugh Doyle, 48, was convicted of laundering the stolen loot after letting the gang use his workshop forecourt to transfer bags of jewellery between vehicles.
Because of his limited role, the judge gave him a sentence of 21 months, suspended for two years.
Who Is 'Basil'?
Speaking outside the court, Doyle claimed he had been "just sucked into it".
"I feel sorry for the victims," he said.
Expressing his relief, he added: "I have boilers to fit in north London."
However, another thief, known only as Basil, remains at large.
He was instrumental in helping the gang get into the vault in the heart of London's diamond district.
Speaking after the sentencing, Flying Squad head Detective superintendent Craig Turner said: "This was an audacious burglary, directly centred and targeting the heart of the diamond community within London.
A 3D graphic showing men climbing down an elevator shaft
"Those responsible thought they had got away with it.
"However, a meticulous police investigation ensured this was not the case."
He added: "There may be people out there that feel sympathy in relation to those sentenced today.
"However, these were all career, callous criminals who had no thought in relation to the property that they stole from the victims."
Det Supt Turner added they continued to hunt the raider known as Basil and pointed out there was a £20,000 reward being offered for information that led to his arrest and conviction.
The heist had been at least three years in the planning, with Jones searching the Internet for high-powered drills in advance.
Hatton Garden
In carrying out the raid, the gang were let into the building before they climbed down a lift shaft, disabled an alarm and bored through the vault wall.
Their equipment failed on the first night, so they left and returned a second night to complete the task.
They broke open 73 of the 1,000 safe deposit boxes and stole the contents.
However, their success was short-lived, principally because Collins used his own car to recce the premises on the second night.
Investigators traced the car through Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras and identified Collins and the rest of the gang, who continued to meet up and discuss what they had done.
Secret police bugs and cameras - and mobile telephone analysis - led to their arrest and charge.