Hatton Garden heist: 'Dad's Army' of 8 Britons accused of £60m jewellery robbery denied bail

Brian Reader (L), his son Paul and Hugh Doyle are among the men accused of the Hatton Garden jewellery heist

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The Independent Online

The ‘Dad’s Army’ of eight Britons accused of carrying out the £60m jewel heist at Hatton Gardens were remanded in custody after they were refused bail.

The men, aged between 48 and 76, arrived at a packed Westminster Magistrates’ Court with an armoured convoy and surrounded by armed police blocking the street as a Scotland Yard helicopter circled above. They were charged with conspiracy to burgle.

The contents of 56 safe deposit boxes were stolen from Hatton Garden Safe Deposit Ltd over the Easter weekend last month. Prosecutor Edmund Hall said that while the total value of the goods stolen was not yet known, it ran “in excess of £10m” and that 73 boxes in total had been opened.

 

District Judge Tan Ikram remanded the men in custody, warning: “The allegation is a serious one which would carry a lengthy custodial sentence if convicted.”

The men who appeared were Terry Perkins, 67, Daniel Jones, 58, Hugh Doyle, 48, all of Enfield; John Collins, 74, of Islington, north London; William Lincoln, 59, of Bethnal Green, east London; father and son, Brian Reader, 76, Paul Reader, 50, both of Dartford, Kent and Carl Wood, 58, of  Cheshunt, Hertfordshire.

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Court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook of the defendants making their first appearance at Westminster Magistrates Court in London on Thursday

They spoke only to confirm their names, addresses and dates of birth. Two of the men had to ask for the questions to be repeated because they are hard of hearing. When the men first stepped into court, some supporters in the packed public gallery waved towards the dock, before sitting and listening to the brief hearing.

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Suspects entering and leaving the scene of the burglary during the Hatton Garden Safe Deposit company raid.

The charge states that together, between 1 April and 19 May, they conspired to enter as a trespasser a building, namely The Hatton Garden Safe Deposit Ltd at 88-90 Hatton Gardens EC1 with intent to steal. The eight are due to appear at Southwark Crown Court on 4 June.

A ninth man has been bailed pending further inquiries but a tenth suspect, a 42-year-old Briton from Essex, was arrested yesterday/on Thursday and was being questions at a London police station, Scotland Yard said.

Detectives from the Met’s Flying Squad arrested the men on Tuesday after a series of morning police raids in properties in London and Kent.

The thieves had ransacked dozens of safety deposit boxes before escaping and leaving a trail of destruction in their wake. They had used a drill to bore a hole 20 inches deep, 10 inches high and 18 inches into the vault wall.

The Flying Squad has also apologised following the arrests after it emerged a security firm’s call about an intruder alert at the premises shortly after midnight on Good Friday was deemed not to require a response.

A more detailed investigation into the defeat of the alarm system is continuing and Scotland Yard says it will share any lessons learnt.