Hatton Garden Heist: burglar 'found evidence of Tory minister abusing children' in previous robbery

Details have allegedly been passed to police investigating claims there was a Westminster VIP paedophile ring

One of the Hatton Garden burglary gang discovered photographs of a Conservative Cabinet Minister abusing children during a previous break-in, a friend has reportedly claimed.

Brian Reader, 76, known as "The Guv’nor", has been convicted of planning the £14m raid, which saw thieves tunnel in to a room containing safety deposit boxes.

During a similar burglary in 1971, Reader allegedly found photographs of the “famous politician” abusing children after tunnelling into a Lloyds Bank in Baker Street, London, the friend told the Daily Mirror.

“It was a shock for them when they found photographs of a famous politician abusing children,” he said.

“The gang were disgusted and left them lying on the floor of the vault for the police to find but nothing was ever done.”

Reader and his accomplices made off with stolen property worth £3m from the 1971 raid, which would be worth about £41m today. Four men, not including Reader, were convicted and jailed for up to 12 years.

In 2008, a member of the gang told the Mirror that they had found child pornography in the raid, but did not mention a famous politician. “We were disgusted and left it in their open boxes so police could trace the owners. We didn’t want to take anything that might give us extra trouble,” he said.

The paper said that the Government at the time told the media not to report the burglary, citing matters of national security.

It did not name the politician, but said it had given the details to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, which will look into claims there was a VIP paedophile ring.