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Last Updated: Wednesday, 25 August, 2004, 13:50 GMT 14:50 UK
Polite robber waits in bank queue
Barclays bank sign (generic)
Howell waited in the queue after passing a cashier a note
A bank robber was caught because he was too polite during a raid at a Barclays branch.

Robert Howell handed the cashier a note reading: "Give me the money, please. I've got a knife," a court heard.

He then waited in the queue at Pontypridd, south Wales, as she served other customers lining up behind him.

At Merthyr Crown Court sentence was adjourned on Howell, 61, from Treforest, Pontypridd, who admitted attempted robbery.

The court heard that Howell was still waiting 10 minutes later when police arrived to arrest him.

He walked into the Barclays branch in Pontypridd and said: "Can I see the manager, please."

Ieuan Rees, prosecuting, told the court: "He then slipped a note under the glass screen.

"He then waited to allow her to serve other customers while he waited for her to respond to the note."

But another cashier saw the note - and alerted Pc Steve Prosser who confronted the defendant with his baton.

Mr Rees said: "On the way to the police station he said he had no intention of harming anyone."

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