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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 March 2006, 19:56 GMT
Security van trapped in cash raid
Burnt-out lorry
The thieves set fire to the lorry used to trap the van
Masked men who robbed a Securitas cash van by trapping it between a lorry and a tractor escaped with between 500,000 and 600,000, police have said.

Two men used crowbars to wrench the van's windows off before setting the lorry in front alight.

The vehicle was rammed from behind by a tractor on Hardwick Grange industrial estate in Woolston, Warrington, on Wednesday evening.

The raid comes two weeks after 53m was stolen from a Securitas depot in Kent.

Cheshire Police revealed details of the approximate amount stolen in the Warrington robbery on Thursday evening.

A force spokeswoman described the vehicles used in the robbery as a red Massey Ferguson tractor and white flatbed Volvo V60 lorry.

Map showing Hardwick Grange industrial estate

Both vehicles were stolen from the same premises just off the A1079 in Wilberfoss, east Yorkshire, on Tuesday evening.

The spokeswoman said the tractor was transported away from Yorkshire on the back of the lorry.

Det Ch Insp Judi Heaton said: "A Securitas van with two occupants in it was driving along the road when a flat-back Volvo lorry pulled out from the kerb in front of them at the junction.

"The van stopped behind it and from behind they were rammed by a tractor that wedged the van in between the two vehicles.

"Two men jumped out of the truck in front, wearing balaclavas and dark clothing. They were both about 5ft 8in (1.76m)."

'Routine run'

She said the men then attacked the van using crowbars, stole the money and then made off on foot.

Detectives said it was "a carefully planned and well executed operation".

A Volvo V40, believed to be the getaway car, was found less than a mile away. It had been stolen from the Tinshill area of Leeds in May 2005.

Det Ch Insp Judi Heaton
Det Ch Insp Judi Heaton described what happened

Cheshire Police said a dark-coloured Audi estate car was seen being driven away from the area and may also have been a getaway car.

A Securitas statement said some cash was left at the scene by the gang.

Securitas spokesman Carl Courtney said: "It was during a routine run. We are not, at the moment, prepared to give precise details of where."

He added that attacks on cash vans were on the increase and 836 such attacks were carried out last year.

Cheshire Police are appealing for anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area to contact them or call the Crimestoppers line.

See footage from the scene of the heist

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