Six men have been jailed for a total of 58 years for conspiracy to rob cash-in-transit vans.
Lee Seddon, 37, Stephen Farrell, 35, Phillip Fisher, 32, Jordan Wheeldon, 26, Michael Bond, 32, and Robert Pinkney, 32, were part of a Salford-based gang involved in a series of armed robberies on vans containing cash for ATM machines, in 2011 and 2013.
Among the places targeted was an off-licence in Langcliffe Road, Brookfield, Preston, in June 2013. Security guards at Brookfield Newsagent were confronted by men in balaclavas as they made a delivery.
Seddon was described as a “pivotal” member of the gang and he featured in a Crimewatch appeal in September 2013, before his arrest.
Brett Gerrity, senior crown prosecutor for CPS North West, 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 striking in Preston, Cleveleys, Stoke-on-Trent and Middlesbrough and stealing substantial amounts of money from terrified staff.
“We have worked closely with 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 that they all played significant roles in the series of violent armed robberies. Robberies, such as these, are not victimless crimes; the staff who are targeted are forced to endure untold distress both during and after their ordeals.
“The sentences imposed upon Lee Seddon and the other members of the gang for their participation in the robberies will serve to protect the public and should act as a deterrent to others who see high value robbery as a career choice.”
Four of the men were sentenced at Preston Crown Court yesterday. Lee Seddon was jailed for 13 years and two months for two counts of conspiracy to rob and one count of dangerous driving.
Stephen Farrell was jailed for 10 years for conspiracy to rob. Philip Fisher was jailed for 12 years for two counts of conspiracy to rob. Jordan Wheeldon was jailed for five years and four months for conspiracy to rob.
Pinkney, then of Isis Close in Salford, and Bond, then of of Gorsey Avenue, Manchester, had both previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to rob and were jailed in December 2013 for six years and eight months, and 10 years and eight months, respectively.