UK News Four men jailed for spree of botched cashpoint raids around Birmingham
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A burglary gang were caught on CCTV smashing their way into banks to steal five cashpoints but failing to make off with any of them.
The thugs caused tens of thousands of pounds worth of damage in the attempted robberies across.
When one of the men was caught he was captured on camera spitting at arresting officers while threatening to give them Covid.
A court heard the gang first struck in October, 2018, when a stolen van was driven into the side of the Nationwide building society in Small Heath, Birmingham.
They had a second van to take the cash machine away with them but failed and sped away in a high-powered Audi.
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On March 1, 2019, they tied straps tied to a cash machine at Lloyds Bank, Bordesley Green in Birmingham, but fled in their Audi when police arrived.
They used a stolen van 11 days later in another failed attempt to steal a cash machine from the Drink Buster shop in the Bromford area of the city.
On May 10, they rammed a stolen van into the Acfold Road Post Office in Handsworth.
Then on August 8, 2019 the group used two stolen vans and an Audi taken in a car key burglary to ram the Birchfield Road Post Office in Handsworth.
As officers arrived, the gang threw a hammer at them and sped off in an Audi.
Detectives uncovered mobile phone and car evidence linking four men to the crime who have now been handed lengthy jail sentences.
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Chad Lee, 30, of Erdington, Birmingham, was jailed for 10 years and two months for drugs offences, burglary and assaulting an emergency worker — after he spat, coughed and claimed he had Covid during his arrest.
Corey Jones, 30, of Erdington, was jailed for five years and three months at Birmingham Crown Court on June 4.
Officers recovered a text message from him where he bragged to a girlfriend about the Lloyds Bank raid and saying she'd be able to see it on the internet.
Ishmael Farquharson, 30, of Yardley, Birmingham, was jaildefor three years and two months.
Reece Proffitt, 24, of Erdington, receieved a six year sentence for drugs offences and burglary.
Police found footage he recorded on his mobile phone of one of the cashpoints he had filmed on a reconnaissance visit.
Lee, Proffitt and Jones all pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary, whilst Farquharson pleaded guilty to theft and raiding the Birchfield Road Post office.
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Proffitt and Lee were also convicted of conspiracy to supply class A and B drugs.
Lee played a leading role in the supply and was paid more than £25,000 into his bank account in a year by his customers.
Proceeds of Crime Act proceedings are now under way to claw back criminal cash from the gang.
Detective Constable Max Gebhard, of West Midlands Police, said: 'This gang caused thousands of pounds of damage and major disruption for businesses around Birmingham, with no regard for the safety of anyone around at the time.
'They were willing to use violence when confronted by officers, and thankfully they're now behind bars for a considerable amount of time.'
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