36 year old ‘prolific robber’ Jamie Walsh, who targeted London bookmakers, has been jailed for eight years.
He pleaded guilty on 8th January 2015 at Kingston Crown Court to four robberies, two attempted robberies and six charges of having an imitation firearm with intent.
Walsh carried out a campaign of raids on bookmakers in the City of London and surrounding boroughs between 19th August 2014 and 10th September last year.
He would go in with a mask and hooded top and use an imitation firearm to threaten staff to hand over money from behind the counter.
If they did not follow his instructions he would threaten them with violent gestures.
On 3rd September last year after he’d robbed Ladbrokes betting shop on Long Lane, City of London police officers found a trail of stolen coins dropped by Walsh leading to a roll of tin foil wrapped in a plastic bag.
This contained traces of his DNA.
Forensic evidence along with CCTV footage positively linked Walsh to a series of crimes:
- On 19 August 2014 he committed a robbery at the betting shop Ladbrokes on Hoxton road stealing £1820.
- He next attempted a robbery on 23 August 2014 at William Hill betting shop on Mare Street, Hackney.
- He went onto to steal £840 from William Hill betting shop, Old Brompton Road, SW7 on 24 August 2014
- On 28 August 2014 he attempted a robbery at William Hill on Clapton Road, E5.
- On the same day he robbed Coral Bookmakers on City Road EC1 stealing £130.
- On 3 September 2014 robbery at Ladbrokes betting shop on Long Lane EC1 after which detectives found roll of tin foil wrapped in plastic bag.
Detective Sergeant Jeremy Wilson of the City of London Police said:
Today’s result brings an end to a lengthy and complex joint investigation between City of London and Metropolitan Police officers.
Walsh was only prevented from committing further acts by the swift actions of the officers in identifying and arresting him.
I hope today’s sentence sends a strong message that firearms, whether real or not, still carry a heavy punishment.