Serial armed robber jailed after targeting Lithuanian shops in Romford and Dagenham
PUBLISHED: 11:30 05 May 2016 | UPDATED: 11:30 05 May 2016
An armed robber has been jailed for 10 years after conducting a series of attacks on Lithuanian convenience stores with an air gun.
Arvydas Filipavicius, 40, a Lithuanian national of Station Parade, Dagenham, carried out three robberies and an attempted robbery in the space of a week, threatening staff with a BB gun to steal cash from Romford and Dagenham shops.
He was stopped after being detained by two members of the public.
He pleaded guilty to all counts at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Tuesday.
His first robbery took place at Mixas, North Street, Romford, on March 26, when he threatened the woman cashier with a silver BB pellet gun, forcing her to hand over £1,000.
Det Con Barry Rowe, from the Flying Squad, said: “Filipavicius carried out a short but terrifying spate of robberies, targeting mainly Lithuanian convenience stores with female or young members of staff. They had no idea the gun he was wielding was not real and were put through a horrible ordeal.
“I would like to commend the brave members of the public who intervened and detained Filipavicius until police arrived. It is largely thanks to them that he is serving a lengthy jail term.”
Two days after his first successful armed robbery, Filipavicius entered Vida and Sons, Porters Avenue, Dagenham, where he told the female member of staff he would shoot her in the leg if she did not hand over cash and made off with £230.
A couple of days after that, he robbed convenience store Hunters, Wood Lane, Dagenham, where he pointed his gun at the 17-year-old shop assistant and got away with £230.
But the serial robber was arrested the following day after two men saw him pushing the woman shop assistant at Nevezis, Wood Lane, Dagenham, back into the shop, pointing his gun at her.
The brave pair grabbed Filipavicius while the woman called the police.