Two men jailed for spate of attempted bank robberies that targeted Hornchurch Halifax
PUBLISHED: 15:18 08 September 2017 | UPDATED: 15:42 08 September 2017
Two men have been jailed for a total of nine years for a spate of attempted bank robberies across east London that included Halifax's Hornchurch store.
Suby Sahota, 51, of South Park Drive, Ilford, appeared alongside his accomplice 34-year-old Ivor Manton, of Basildon, Essex, at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Thursday for sentencing.
Sahota had been found guilty of conspiracy to rob by a jury on August 2, while Manton – who was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment, had pleaded guilty to the same charge on March 23.
The Met’s Flying Squad launched an investigation on November 3 last year after an attempted robbery at HSBC Bank in Electric Parade, South Woodford.
A man who was later identified as Manton had entered the bank, grabbed an employee and pointed what she believed to be a gun in a bag at her.
The woman screamed, startling Manton, who ran out of the bank empty handed.
Detectives analysed CCTV footage and established that, prior to the offence, Manton was in an alleyway at the side of The George pub in company with another man, identified as Sahota, who remained in the alleyway until Manton returned.
On November 4, Manton entered Barclays Bank on Chadwell Heath High Road and again presented what was believed to be a gun in a plastic bag to a cashier and demanded money.
He was handed £2,800 in cash before making off.
It was clear from CCTV that the suspect was again wearing two layers of clothing and was accompanied by another male dressed in dark clothing with a bag, identified once more as Sahota.
The two men were also responsible for an attempted robbery at Halifax in Hornchurch High Street on November 14.
On that occasion, a staff member who had been threatened with a gun activated the security screens and Manton ran out with nothing.
Again, CCTV suggested he was with Sahota before and after the attack.
The next offence was carried out at Betfred in Seven Kings High Road on the morning of November 21.
Again, Manton claimed to have a gun in a bag and again, upon leaving the premises removed his clothing and put it into a bag held by Sahota.
The pair’s final offence was at William Hill in Woodford Green High Road on December 21.
Manton entered the premises and demanded money with a handgun in a carrier bag.
A female employee, who was in her first week of work at the bookmakers, handed him £200 and he left.
Manton was identified by detectives on January 3 after his image from the CCTV footage was matched with one on the Met’s custody imaging databases.
A search of his custody record found that he had been arrested in company with Sahota for a shoplifting matter on 31 December 2016.
Examination of Sahota’s custody image identified him as the man that assists Manton with changing his clothing before and after the robberies.
Sahota was arrested at his home address on January 31.
During a search of his house, a hooded top was recovered which matched that worn by the suspect in the bank on several occasions.
A brown jacket was also recovered, which was a match for CCTV footage from the offence in Hornchurch.
Manton and Sahota were both charged with conspiracy to rob that day.
Det Con Shona Wilkinson, of the Met’s Flying Squad, said: “This series of offences was terrifying for employees were threatened with a gun.
“A recurring theme from all the victims of these offences was they thought they would not see their loved ones again.
“No one has the right to create such fear when all you have done is gone to work in the morning.”