Raid gang boss gets 20 years

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The Independent Online
A FEARED underworld gang boss dubbed "The Ayatollah" was jailed for 20 years and the mistress he coerced received a three-year sentence yesterday. James Phillips, 47, from Greenwich, south-east London, masterminded "a stream" of armed raids on jewellers and other targets over four years which netted more than pounds 1m, an Old Bailey court was told.

His lover, Christine Clapp-Smith, 48, from Bermondsey, south London, helped him set up two raids on West End jewellery shops. Before one raid, she made up an armed robber to look like a woman so as not to arouse suspicion. But Clapp-Smith was "a terrified robot" in the hands of her violent lover, according to her counsel, Ian Joblin.