Bank robber who stole £114k ordered to pay back just £1 (and he’s got 28 days to find the cash)

February 21, 2013 | by | 0 Comments
Craig Smith stole £114k in a bank raid but has to pay back just £1

Craig Smith stole £114k in a bank raid but has to pay back just £1

A bank robber who stole over £114,000 in a terrifying raid on a HSBC branch has been ordered to pay back just £1 – and he has 28 days to find the cash.

Craig Smith, 30, was jailed for nine years last March after he pleaded guilty to conspiring to rob the bank in January 2011.

He and another man, both wearing balaclavas, burst into the bank in Balsall Common, West Mids., after a car driven by an accomplice ploughed through the window as staff filled cash machines.

The robbers fled with boxes containing tens of thousands of pounds, none of which has ever been recovered.

This week a Proceeds of Crime hearing was told that Smith, formerly of Stechford, Birmingham, benefited from the raid to the tune of £114,097.

But after the court heard Smith had “no realisable assets”, Judge Peter Carr ordered him to pay back a nominal sum of £1 within 28 days, or face a further seven days in prison.

The smash-and-grab raid took place at the HSBC branch on January 17, 2011.

Staff were loading cash machines when a car driven by James Lawlor, 29, from Balsall Common, ploughed through the window.

A male member of staff suffered minor injuries. No members of the public were inside and no weapons were used.

Smith and another man then entered the bank and stole cash boxes before fleeing in the car, which was later found abandoned.

A back-up car driven by a fourth man was also found dumped nearby.

Both vehicles had been stolen from Leamington Spa, Warks., and their number plates had been changed to avoid detection.

The HSBC bank in Balsall Common after it was raided by Smith

The HSBC bank in Balsall Common after it was raided by Smith

Smith and Lawlor were arrested months later.

Lawlor denied conspiracy to rob but was found guilty following a trial at Coventry Crown Court and was jailed for 12 years.

Speaking at the time both men were jailed, Det Insp Martin Brennan, of West Midlands Police, said: “It is only by sheer good luck that no one was seriously injured or even killed by these desperate men.”

Category: News

Add your comment

Libellous and abusive comments are not allowed. Please read our House Rules

For information about privacy and cookies please read our Privacy Policy