On Wednesday, 9 March shortly after 2pm, three men entered a branch of Lloyds Bank in Commercial Road, brandishing weapons that included knives and a claw hammer. The suspects demanded money; two of them entered the staff area whilst a third guarded the bank’s front door.
Two members of staff were subjected to a violent attack; a male member of staff suffered a stab wound to his face, whilst the female member of staff had knives held to her throat prior to being forced to the floor. She also sustained a slash injury to her face.
Having failed to gain access to the cash the men grabbed a quantity of Lloyds Bank correspondence before making off. Once outside the venue the suspects got into Khan’s black BMW motor vehicle and sped off.
Police were called and the vehicle was stopped a short distance away with Ahmed, Hassan and Khan still inside. The vehicle’s registration plate had been tampered with to make an ‘L’ on the plate look like an ‘E’.
The vehicle was seized by police and found to contain identical clothing, facial coverings and gloves as worn by the suspects during the robbery. Also found inside the vehicle were clothing tags relating to the purchase of these items as well as packaging from the purchase of a knife used during the robbery. Police also recovered weapons which had been discarded in a street bin by the suspects.
All three suspects were arrested and subsequently charged.
During the investigation detectives identified a supermarket where Khan had purchased the knives and gloves on the morning of the robbery.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Brad Weston of the Flying Squad, said: “This was an audacious armed robbery and a terrifying ordeal for staff at the bank, two of whom sustained facial knife injuries. Thanks to the swift action of both the bank staff and the police, the men were quickly apprehended and identified as the culprits. The sentences handed down reflect the seriousness of the offence and will hopefully act as a deterrent to others intent on committing such abhorrent crimes.”
Tariq Ahmed, 21 (25.06.94) of Vesey Path, Tower Hamlets pleaded guilty on Monday, 22 April to conspiracy to rob and was today sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment.
Mohammed Khan, 19 (19.08.96) of Mackrow Walk, Tower Hamlets pleaded guilty on Friday, 8 April to conspiracy to rob and was today sentenced to eight years’ imprisonment.
Junaid Hassan, 24 (11.05.92) Saracen Street, Tower Hamlets pleaded guilty on Friday, 8 April to conspiracy to rob and was today sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment.
Source: Met Police