Armed gang jailed for post office van raids

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A GANG of armed robbers, who stole more than pounds 750,000 in raids on post office security vans, were jailed for a total of 40 years yesterday.

The jury at Southwark Crown Court in London took almost two days to decide Terrence Agombar, 29, an East End pub manager from Bexleyheath, south-east London, was guilty of conspiracy to rob.

His right-hand man Mark Cummings, 30, a breakdown truck driver of Whitechapel, east London, who helped plan the robberies using inside information supplied by post office employees, was also found guilty of conspiracy. Both were jailed for 14 years.

Judge Victor Watts ordered Cummings to serve his sentence concurrently with a four-year jail term passed earlier this year for dishonestly handling pounds 35,000.

Gary Hutchins, 29, unemployed, of Stepney, east London, who took part in four of the six raids, was also convicted of conspiracy and jailed for 12 years. He will serve his sentence at the same time as a 10-year term imposed last January for handling pounds 65,000 stolen during a robbery.

A fourth gang member, John Henry, 27, also unemployed of Bexleyheath, was cleared of conspiracy but convicted of handling. He will be sentenced in January. When the judge praised police the robbers gave a round of applause.