Hatton Garden raid: Prison 'difficult' for jewel thieves

Carl Wood Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Carl Wood, who was identified as 'Male F' in the raid, was said to be psychologically affected by his time on remand

The men convicted of the Hatton Garden heist are facing tough conditions in prison, a court has heard.

The lawyer defending one of the robbers said they sometimes only saw half an hour of sunlight a day.

He was making submissions on the second day of a three-day sentencing hearing at Woolwich Crown Court.

But the prosecutor told the court their actions were likely to have caused "harassment, alarm or distress".

Since their arrests in May last year, they have been on remand in the high-security Belmarsh prison.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Carl Wood, William Lincoln and Hugh Doyle (l-r) whose lawyers spoke in court today

The gang - including men who were involved in the Security Express and Brinks Mat robberies - breached the vault at Hatton Garden Safe Deposit in central London over the Easter weekend last year.

Nick Corsellis, defending Carl Wood, 59, asked the judge to take into account the fact that Wood's inevitable jail term will mean that he will "not see" his ailing parents again.

Psychological impact

He said his remand in custody had been "particularly difficult" because he and the other men are in the double A security category.

Mr Corsellis said it meant they are given one hour of exercise a day and "it is very rare that that is achieved - half an hour at best. Half an hour of daylight".

He claimed this had psychologically affected his client, saying: "The remand in custody has been difficult to bear."

The court also heard that Hugh Doyle, 49, had made an effort to turn away from crime, and that William Lincoln, 60, had a limited role in the conspiracy.

His lawyer, Dante Leccacorvi, said Lincoln "had a very distinct role and that was to conceal the proceeds of this crime on a short-term basis".

Image copyright Met Police
Image caption The gang raided safe deposit boxes for jewels after drilling into the vault

All the defence barristers argued that their clients should not be made the subject of Criminal Behaviour Orders.

'Significant burglary'

Arguing for these to be imposed, prosecutor Philip Evans QC described the heist as a "significant burglary".

Adding that it was possible the men had also melted down the goods, or even taken them abroad, he continued: "These are sustained actions, and it is overwhelmingly likely that the victims of this offence would have been caused harassment, alarm or distress."

The men who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary last September are:

  • John "Kenny" Collins, 75, of Bletsoe Walk, Islington, north London
  • Daniel Jones, 61, of Park Avenue, Enfield, north London
  • Terry Perkins, 67, of Heene Road, Enfield
  • Brian Reader, 77, of Dartford Road, Dartford, Kent

Wood, of Elderbeck Close, Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, and Lincoln, of Winkley Street, Bethnal Green, east London, were convicted of conspiracy to commit burglary and conspiracy to conceal, convert or transfer criminal property after a trial.

Doyle, of Riverside Gardens, Enfield, was found guilty of concealing, converting or transferring criminal property between January 1 and May 19 last year.

Reader has been absent from the sentencing hearing after falling and suffering a stroke in Belmarsh.

All six men are due to be sentenced on Wednesday, when Judge Kinch will also decide when Reader will be sentenced.

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