Northern Ireland

West Belfast kidnapping and robbery investigated

A Post Office on the Springfield Road was the target of the robbery
Image caption A post office on the Springfield Road was the target of the robbery attempt

A man has been held hostage during an attempted robbery in west Belfast.

The victim was bundled into the back of a van by four men after he arrived at work in Gortfin Street in west Belfast at about 0930 GMT on Friday.

It is believed they were holding him hostage in order to rob Blackstaff post office on the Springfield Road.

However, after being left in the van at Glenside Road the man managed to free himself and raise the alarm. No money was stolen during the incident.

Meanwhile, police are probing a separate incident at a cheque cashing business in Andersonstown.

A female employee was told her partner was being held hostage and that she should take money from the business. Police were alerted and the woman's partner was found to be safe and well.

He had not been approached by anyone suspicious. Police said initial enquiries suggest that those who made the call may have been watching the business at the time.