Tyneside gang jailed after Facebook robbery boasts
A Tyneside gang which carried out robberies using an imitation firearm then boasted about it on a social networking site have been jailed.
The first robbery, on 16 February, targeted the occupants of a student house in Heaton, Newcastle.
Six days later a junior doctor was robbed in Jesmond. In both cases an realistic-looking firearm was used.
Police tracked down the five-strong gang, aged between 16 and 19, after viewing footage on Facebook.
Calling themselves the NE2 crew, after a Newcastle postcode, the five posed with their faces covered but brandishing an imitation gun and talking about their crimes.
The judge at Newcastle Crown Court sentenced Dillan Cooper, 16, and Kieron Smith, 17, each to six years for aggravated burglary and robbery.
Wayne Scott, 19, was sentenced to a four year term for robbery.
Adam Devlin, 19, was sentenced to three years and four months for aggravated burglary, and Bradley Bulman, 17, was given the same term for robbery.
Detective Constable Kev Ashurst, from Northumbria Police, said: "The investigation was complex and thorough and involved seizing and viewing mobile phone footage and looking into their use of the social networking site Facebook.
"These boys thought they were some sort of crew when in reality they were just cowards who carried out two despicable crimes."