Page last updated at 21:51 GMT, Monday, 1 March 2010

Armed 'Ikea bag' robbers jailed for Bristol store raids


Store raid gang caught on camera

A gang of armed robbers, including a musician who recorded with Massive Attack, has been jailed.

The men armed themselves with metal bars and hammers as they targeted 13 convenience stores across Bristol.

Detectives dubbed them the "Ikea bag" robberies as the gang usually used a blue bag from the furniture store to carry their haul.

Vocalist Claude Williams and five other men had been convicted of conspiracy to rob at Bristol Crown Court.

They stole £37,406 worth of cigarettes and tobacco, and £4,667 in cash between August 2008 and January 2009.

The men were caught by police as they prepared for a fourteenth robbery on 14 January last year.

Williams, 48, of Windmill Hill, was jailed for three years for his role in the conspiracy.

Rapping under the name Willy Wee, he was a member of the Wild Bunch, a hip-hop collective that later evolved into Massive Attack.

Williams appeared on the first Massive Attack album.

(From top left clockwise) William Defty; Christopher Morgan; Claude Williams; Ryan Douglas; Peter Miles; David Miles
The six terrorised small shops in Bristol for six months

Peter Miles, 41, of Kingswood, was jailed for seven-and-a-half years, David Miles, 23, of Ashley Down, for five-and-a-half years, Ryan Douglas, 36, of Fishponds, for seven years and nine months, William Defty, 36, of Hengrove, for five-and-a-half years, and Christopher Morgan, 40, of Lawrence Hill, for five years and four months.

Detective Inspector Jon Reilly, of Avon and Somerset Police, said: "The sentences passed today bring an end to what was a challenging investigation.

"This gang of offenders was both organised and dangerous and preyed upon convenience stores that were open late into the evening."

"By using a high level of violence, with metal bars and hammers, they overcame staff and stole both cash and cigarettes to a total value of over £40,000."

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