A gang of armed robbers who carried out security van robberies across Lancashire have been ordered to pay back their ill-gotten gains.
The Manchester based criminals, who netted £285,000 in raids in Preston, Lancaster, Cleveleys and across the country were jailed for a total of 58 years last February after a two-year crime spree.
Armed with machetes and axes they targeted cash-in-transit vans carrying bundles of money for ATM machines.
Ringleader Lee Seddon went on the run after a £70,000 raid at an off-licence in Langcliffe Road, Brookfield, Preston, in June 2013 but was captured after a van he was driving at 80mph was chased by Greater Manchester Police’s intercept team and the force helicopter.
On October 10, 2013, members of the gang made off with £52,000 when they stole four boxes from an ATM at Santander, on Victoria Road West, in Cleveleys, using a weapon to threaten security guards and a circular saw to gain access to the cash machine.
In a Proceeds of Crime Act hearing at Preston Crown Court, Seddon, 37, of Snow Hill Road, Bolton, who is serving 13 years and two months, was found to have benefited by £40,828.30 but only had £1,952 of assets, including his car, to pay back.
Accomplice Stephen Farrell, 35, of Mark Avenue, Salford, benefited by £20,800 but only had £1,681.62 of realisable assets to pay back as he serves a 10-year jail term. Fellow criminals Jordan Wheeldon, 26, of Seaford Road, Salford, is serving five years four months. He was ordered to pay back a token sum of £1 - despite benefiting by £11,000 as was Michael Bond, 32, of Gorsey Avenue, Wythenshawe, who benefited by £17,000.
But both were warned the authorities could come after their assets at a later date.
Det Sgt Mark Riley, of Lancashire Police, said: “After a successful prosecution, a financial investigation has realised their benefits and they’ve been pursued and punished further.”
Another defendant, Philip Fisher, Phillip Fisher, 32, of Bolton will face similar proceedings on September 20.