Man jailed for £40m gems raid

A man was jailed for 21 years today for his role in Britain's biggest jewellery heist.





Craig Calderwood, 28, was the fifth person to be convicted over the Graff Jewellers robbery in London's Mayfair which saw £40 million of gems stolen at gunpoint.



Despite four other convictions the jewellery has not been found.



Police believe the raid was part of a sophisticated plan that was co-ordinated from the outside.



The investigation is still ongoing for other members of the robbery gang.



Scotland Yard said Calderwood was convicted of conspiring together with others to rob Graff Jewellers between August 3 and August 7 2009 and possessing a firearm during the robbery on August 6.



He was found guilty at Woolwich Crown Court after a jury was unable to reach a verdict in a first trial in July 2010.



Detective Chief Inspector Pam Mace, who has been leading the investigation, said: "This latest conviction is a successful conclusion to this part of what remains an ongoing investigation.



"I'd like to thank all the victims and witnesses who supported us throughout this prosecution despite the fact that it has meant reliving this violent incident.



"We have always said these individuals were recruited by others to commit the actual robbery.



"I would like to use this opportunity to remind anyone, including people from the criminal fraternity, that there is a reward of one million pounds for information given in connection with the identification, arrest and prosecution of the person(s) responsible, and the recovery of the stolen property."





In June 2010, Calderwood's accomplice, Aman Kassaye, 25, was convicted of kidnap, conspiracy to rob and possessing a firearm.

In the weeks following, three other men - Thomas Thomas, 46, Solomun Beyene, 25, and Clinton Mogg, 43 - were convicted of conspiracy to rob.



Police watched CCTV footage from inside the jewellery shop of Calderwood and Kassaye entering the store to carry out the robbery.



The pair are later seen fleeing the scene, with Calderwood escaping in a blue BMW and Kassaye running off.



After the convictions in 2010, police offered a reward of up to £1 million, which remains today, for information to help them trace a motorcyclist suspected of making off with the jewellery haul.



It is believed the accomplice was passed a black plastic bin bag containing the gems moments after the record heist at the prestigious Mayfair store.



But the biker was forced to abandon his gold-coloured Suzuki SV650 when it broke down a short distance away in Berkeley Square.



The mystery rider, who never removed his helmet, was part of a carefully planned plot which included blocking vehicles and numerous changes of getaway car to help the robbers escape.



Detectives scoured hundreds of hours of CCTV in a bid to trace the suspect's escape route through central London.



But they lost track of him after he walked into the 16-hectare Green Park, a short distance from Buckingham Palace.



Police are urging anyone who has any information about the robbery to contact them on 020 8247 4804 or call Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower