FOUR MUSLIM GANG members, including one dressed in a burqa, who staged a frenzied attack on a Burnley jewelry store as well as on senior citizens have received jail sentences of between nine and twelve years each. (That’s all?)
BURNLEY CITIZEN (H/T IVE) After Judge Pamela Badley jailed each of them at Preston Crown Court, the Burnley councillor for the area, Coun Shah Hussain, said: “The fact the thieves wore burqas to trick their way into the store makes this crime even more despicable.”
The court heard how the same gang also held up a couple aged 74 and 63 at their own home in the Fairfield Drive area of Burnley. Prosecutor Charlotte Holland said one of them threatened to cut off the elderly woman’s hand if she did not remove treasured jewelry.
Another elderly couple, aged 85 and 77, were similarly attacked and robbed in their own home in the Ellesmere Road area of Bolton, by masked men carrying an axe and a hammer.
Each of the gang members pleaded guilty to conspiracy to rob between February and May, 2011. Judge Badley jailed Atcha for 12 years, Khola for 10 years and eight months and Baber Khan for 10 years and eight months. Mohammed Khan, who had previous convictions for drug dealing and wounding, was jailed for nine years and four months and ordered to serve a five-year extended period on license.
The judge told them they must each bear varying degrees of responsibility for what went on during the three robberies, as part of overall conspiracy. Speaking after the case, Det Sgt Nicola Bithell, of Burnley CID, said: “These men are dangerous offenders who have been running riot in Lancashire and Greater Manchester for some time.
“The gang used extreme violence and weapons to threaten the victims, leaving them terrified and traumatised.” Two of three raids left the Daneshouse with Stoneyholme area in a state of shock, according to a councillor.