London

London smash-and-grab moped gang jailed over £1.2m spree

Gang attacks shop Image copyright Met Police
Image caption The gang used fencing blocks as makeshift battering rams to break into mobile phone stores

Ten members of a moped gang have been jailed for targeting mobile phone shops in a £1.2m smash-and-grab spree

The men, armed with hammers and knives, broke into stores using angle grinders and attacked three security guards during the raids.

They ransacked 17 shops in London between May and November 2016, taking high-end iPhone and Samsungs headsets.

All ten, aged between 19 and 24, were found guilty of conspiracy to commit burglary at Blackfriars Crown Court.

The gang broke into the stores using fencing blocks as makeshift battering rams, which were left as a calling card.

Three security guards were beaten and one witness was threatened with a firearm during the spree.

Image copyright Met Police
Image caption The ten men were found guilty of conspiracy to commit burglary at Blackfriars Crown Court

Judge Michael Simon described the gang as "young in chronological age, but old in criminality".

"The attacks were highly organised and meticulously planned," he said.

The ten defendants and their sentences:

  • Courtney White, 23, of Tottenham: Jailed for 18 years with a two-year extended licence period
  • Mominur Rahman, 22, of Camden: Jailed for 12 and a half years
  • Mohammed Hussain, 24, of Hackney: Jailed for 10 years
  • Chang Mabiala, 21, of Islington: Jailed for eight and a half years
  • Mohammed Ali, 24, of Hackney: Jailed for seven years and one month
  • Chris Costi, 19, of Hackney: Jailed for eight and a half years
  • Bobby Kennedy, 22, of Islington: Jailed for 11 and a half years
  • Alfie Kennedy, 21, of Shoreditch: Jailed for 13 years and one month
  • Adam Attalah, 21, of no fixed address: Jailed for 10 years and 10 months
  • Dylan Castano Lopez, 20, of Camberwell: Jailed for 10 years and one month

All but one of the raids were carried out on shops run by mobile phone company Three.

The raids cost the firm an estimated £1.2m in lost stock, damage, increased security and the closing of a branch that was targeted four times.

The court heard Three attached GPS tracking devices to some phones in their stores, which were tracked when they were stolen by the gang.

Officers tracked the route that one of the phones had taken and identified two suspects.

Supt Sean Yates, from the Met Police, said: "This case has led to dangerous individuals being taken off the streets."

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