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Tuesday, 5 February, 2002, 17:40 GMT
Roof raider used 'appalling violence'
The gang tunnelled through roofs during raids
A convicted murderer has been given six life terms after admitting his part in a series of violent Post Office and building society raids.

Duane Daniels, 27, led a gang which tied up and tortured people who lived above the banks - they then tunnelled through their floors into premises below.

Daniels, of Lewisham, south-east London, had already committed nearly 1,000 crimes, including burglary, mugging and theft, to fund an expensive crack habit.

One of his victims said he should never be released.

'Gratuitous violence'

Two accomplices, Richard Caines, 26, and Victor Iniodu, 27, both of no fixed address were each given five-year jail terms.

Caines was jailed for attempted robbery and robbery and Iniodu for conspiracy to rob and aggravated burglary.

Duane Daniels
Daniels has committed nearly 1,000 crimes

Daniels is currently serving a life sentence - imposed at the Old Bailey last year - for stabbing nightclub doorman George Napier to death.

The murder occurred shortly after Daniels was released from a 10-year term for beating an elderly woman during a burglary in 1993.

On Tuesday, Judge Kenneth Zucker said Daniels would remain a serious danger to the public.

"Your record is one of appalling, gratuitous and indiscriminate violence."

In one raid on a south London Post office, Daniels thrust a hairbrush into the mouth of Lorna Macleod, now 42, who was living upstairs and slit her buttocks after she was tied up.

Ms Macleod said: "He is obviously violent and volatile, very dangerous and immoral."

Manager kicked

Daniels and his two accomplices also raided the Halifax building society in Whitton, Middlesex in February, 2001.

They tied up three residents in the flat and waited for the bank staff to arrive the next morning.

They used "gratuitous violence", stabbing one of the male occupants in the shoulder.

When the building society manager arrived the next morning, she was dragged by her hair and kicked.

But she managed to trigger the panic alarm and the raiders fled as they heard police sirens.

In all three raids - two on Post Offices in south London and one on the Halifax - the upstairs residents were also robbed.

Daniels admitted his part in all three raids.

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See also:

20 Dec 01 | England
Life for killer caught by dog DNA
30 Nov 01 | England
DNA dog will be destroyed
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