Four arrests over fugitive robber Andrew Moran's escape

Andrew Moran
Image caption Andrew Moran was jailed in his absence

Four people have been arrested on suspicion of helping an armed robber, who became one of Britain's most wanted fugitives, evade justice.

Andrew Moran, 31, from Salford, was detained after a pursuit by police in Spain in May.

Two women, 27 and 29, and a man, 27, have been held on suspicion of helping an offender and money laundering.

A 39-year-old man has been held on suspicion of helping an offender and lying to obtain a passport.

Moran could be charged with offences in Spain before he is finally extradited to the UK.

Leapt from dock

The four were held after a series of early morning raids when police from Titan (the North West Regional Organised Crime Unit), Lancashire Police and the Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) raided three houses in Radcliffe, Chorlton and Prestwich in Greater Manchester.

Moran was charged with an armed robbery of Royal Mail guards in Lancashire in 2005 but absconded during his trial.

The jury later returned a guilty verdict and he was convicted in his absence.

Moran was placed on Soca's most wanted list after leaping from the dock and assaulting four security guards during his trial at Burnley Crown Court in February 2009.

He had taken part in an armed robbery, alongside Stephen Devalda, in which Royal Mail guards were threatened with a gun, machete and baseball bat in Colne in May 2005.

One of the guards was assaulted before the offenders escaped with £25,000.

Devalda, 29, also from Salford, was charged with robbery but failed to attend court and also went on the run before being captured in Spain in March 2011.

He was later jailed at Preston Crown Court for nine years and eight months.

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