Two jailed for smash and grab, Southall
13 August 2012
Two men have been jailed today (13 August 2012) following an attempted smash and grab at a jewellers in Southall.
Andre Arhin-Acquaah [28/10/90 - 21 ys] of 55 Garrick Road, Greenford, and Leon Kane [11/11/90 - 21 ys] of 283 Aragon Road, Morden were sentenced at Harrow Crown Court for attempted robbery.
"The public will be reassured that both these men are now behind bars."
Kane was sentenced to 3 and a half years' imprisonment. He had denied knowledge that a sledge hammer was going to be involved, but His Honour Judge Aaron did not believe this and took the view that Kane was the getaway driver and had full knowledge of the offence.
Arhin-Acquaah was sentenced to 4 years' imprisonment for the attempted robbery.
In addition he was also sentenced on eight counts of supplying heroin and crack cocaine to officers during a test purchase operation in Hammersmith in November and December 2011. He pleaded guilty to these offences at Isleworth Crown Court earlier this year.
As this was his third drugs supply conviction he was sentenced to 4 years for the supply of drugs (4 years on each count to be served concurrently); this period will be served consecutively with his attempted robbery sentence.
It was said he would have received a longer sentence for his part in the attempted robbery had he not also been jailed for the drugs - the Judge took into account the totality of the sentences.
A 17 year old teenager had already pleaded guilty to attempted robbery and was sentenced in December 2011 to a 2 years detention and training order.
It was on 4 October 2011 that a 17-year-old from Brixton SW2, Ahrin-Acquaah and Kane met up and travelled to Southall in Kane's car - a light blue Ford Fiesta index bearing false plates.
At 12:14hrs the teenager and Ahrin-Acquaah ran from the direction of Oswald Road to the front of Ramesh Jewellers, at 104 The Broadway. The teenager was armed with a sledge-hammer, and both men had hoods up and their faces covered.
The teenager and Arhin-Acquaah attempted to gain entry to the front of the shop, smashing the window with the sledgehammer.
When a security guard attempted to intervene the teenager drew back as if to hit him with the hammer. The guard pressed on and intervened, which ran the two suspects off across Southall Broadway and into Oswald Road.
The guard gave chase and saw both men get into the rear of the Ford Fiesta.
Officers from Ealing Crime Squad were on patrol in the area and saw the disturbance. The officers rounded the corner to see the blue Fiesta abandoned, with the keys still in the ignition in Beaconsfield Road and two men in dark hooded tops (the teenager and Ahrin-Acquaah) walking away from the car. The two men were arrested.
At 15.44hrs that afternoon, some 3 and a half hours after the attempted robbery, Kane called 999 and reported that his car had been stolen during a car jacking in west London at 11.30hrs that morning.
After providing a contradictory and incomplete story to the 999 operator, and then to the reporting officers who attended his mother's address, he was also arrested.
Kane was interviewed and provided a convoluted account of the robbery of his car. He claimed he had made his way to west London to sell his car using the SatNav device in his Blackberry mobile phone which was also stolen in the car-jacking. Kane was released on bail whilst enquiries were made.
In November 2011 Kane was arrested for another unrelated offence. On arrest he was found to be in possession of the mobile phone he claimed was stolen in the robbery. CPS authorised his charging.
At Harrow Crown Court in December 2011, the teenager pleaded guilty to his part in the attempted robbery and was sentenced.
Arhin-Acquaah and Kane both entered not guilty pleas when charged and both maintained these until 26 June 2012 when Arhin-Acquaah pleaded Guilty at the pre-trial review, and 9 July 2012 when Kane pleaded Guilty to attempted robbery on the day that the trial was due to start.
Sentencing for both men was adjourned until today (13 August 2012).
DC Neil Webb of the North West London Flying Squad based in Finchley said: "The public will be reassured that both these men are now behind bars. This case demonstrates to anyone who may be tempted to take part in a smash and grab that we will trace those involved and put them before the courts."