Leicester

Brothers deny 16 armed robberies on shops

Two brothers from Coventry have gone on trial accused of carrying out a spree of armed robberies across the Midlands.

Jason Cornwall, 25, and his brother Mark, 36, both of Arundel Road, wore masks as they threatened shop-workers, Leicester Crown Court was told.

Both men deny a charge of conspiracy of commit robbery on 16 occasions.

The robberies took place at stores in Leicestershire, Oxfordfordshire, Northamptonshire and Warwickshire from April to September 2010.

A third defendant, Dustin McCormack, 33, of Robertson Close, Coventry, has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit armed robbery and will be sentenced at a later date.

The court heard that the robbers wore latex gloves and were careful not to leave any forensic evidence at the scene.

Baseball bats

But the discovery of a mobile phone owned by Jason Cornwall linked him and his brother to the robberies, the prosecution said.

The court was told the raids were similar in method, all targeting convenience stores and newsagents.

Threats were made to staff who were often tied up while the robbers searched for cashboxes and safes.

Staff were threatened with a variety of weapons including a crowbar, baseball bats and knives, the prosecution said.

The robberies were carried out either early in the morning or late at night when the shops were either opening or closing, the court was told.

The raids took place in Burbage, Hinckley, Wigston and Narborough in Leicestershire; Rugby in Warwickshire; Daventry and Northampton in Northamptonshire; and Banbury in Oxfordshire.

The trial continues.

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