Jail for stun gun robbers; COURTS: Masked gang locked up over pounds 40,000 raids.
FOUR armed robbers who were part of a "stun gun gang" which targeted supermarkets and shops were today behind bars.
Brothers Jahmine and Andrew Lee together with Patrick Green and Nyah Williams, all from Birmingham, were jailed for between six and eight years for their part in a series of terrifying raids on stores across the West Midlands.
Over a five-month period last year the masked gang struck a dozen times, hitting supermarkets, a convenience store and fast-food restaurant.
They used the same method - bursting in and threatening staff with weapons including a handheld electric stun gun, hammers and knives.
One supermarket was raided three times and another twice.
In total they escaped with about pounds 40,000 and blew the lot on a champagne lifestyle.
Sentencing the four men, who are all from Birmingham, Judge Salomonsen who told them: "Despite your attempts to disguise yourselves, police apprehended at least some of the conspirators.
"Your prison sentences will be a deterrent to others minded to commit this sort of offence."
Stephen Thomas, prosecuting at Birmingham Crown Court, said after the stun gun was left behind at one of the raids involving Jahmine Lee, others became involved and continued the crime spree, arming themselves with hammers and knives.
But several gang members were caught after a taskforce of detectives was formed at Rose Road Police Station, Harborne.
Jahmine, Lee, 27, of Sundridge Avenue, Newtown, Andrew Lee, 20, of Sandy House, Soho, Handsworth and 27-year-old Green, of Rilstone Road, Quinton, each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to rob.
Jahmine Lee accepted he had taken part in robberies at a newsagents in Wisley Way, Quinton, on January 30 last year and 90 minutes later at Somerfield supermarket in Handsworth, where the manager was forced to open the safe and pounds 30,000 was stolen.
He also accepted he was part of the gang that targeted Lidl, in Hamstead, on February 20 and the Somerfield supermarket again on March 31. He said he took part in the latter because of a debt he owed to the "wrong people" that saw him slashed across the face.
He was jailed for eight years. Dad-of-two Andrew Lee admitted he was behind raids on Lidl and Somerfield supermarkets in March 2008, and a sex shop in Birmingham days later but said he had become involved because of a dif-ficult financial situation. He was jailed for six years.
Green, a dad-of-three, also accepted taking part in a raid on the other two Somerfield stores in March and, in May, at another Lidl store out of "financial desperat ion".
His was jailed for eight years and handed an extended period of licence after the judge deemed him a risk to the public.
Dad-of-one Williams, 20, of Westcott Road, Sheldon, was found guilty of robbery at a McDonalds restaurant in Telford on March 23 last year. He was jailed for six years.
His co-accused in that offence, Ojay Miller, 19, from Highgate Street, Highgate, and 21-year-old Valtie Dixon, from Alfred Road, Handsworth, were both due to be sentenced for that offence today after being convicted of robbery.
To see more CCTV pictures of the gang in action, visit www.birminghammail.net and click on 'videos and pics'.
Weapon: a stun gun used in the raids CCTV footage: A supermarket raid in Grove Lane, Handsworth; and (inset) a supermarket raid in Old Walsall Road, Hamstead.
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|Publication:||Birmingham Mail (England)|
|Date:||Sep 4, 2009|
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