The court heard that in several of the attacks one of the gang gained entry to the targeted shops purporting to be a customer. He then held the door open for his hammer and axe wielding accomplices who proceeded to smash the display cabinets and fill their bags with jewellery.
The ten strong Romanian gang all pleaded guilty to the offences between December 2012 and February 2013 and were sentenced at the Old Bailey for stealing more than a million pounds worth of jewellery.
The court heard how the Flying Squad at Barking launched an investigation - code-named Operation Tiburon, following a spate of well planned and executed robberies in Wembley, Ilford, East Ham, Southwark and Haringey.
The gang targeted Asian jewellers stealing mostly 22 carat gold items. Their modus operandi involved the group forcing entry into the premises using an array of weapons including hammers, axes and sledgehammers, often using violence to frighten members of staff within the shops.
Fleeing the scene once they had amassed large hauls of valuable items, the gang on a number of occasions escaped via nearby railway lines, discarding identifiable items of clothing and secreting the stolen items in pre-dug holes.
Police in Waltham Forest are searching for three men who stole a four month-old bulldog puppy worth £2000 after pretending to be police officers.
The robbery happened just after midnight on January 17th at a house in Church Road. After an occupant opened the door to the men, the trio attacked her. They also punched another woman who was also in the house.
Apart from the dog, the robbers took two mobile phones and a laptop. Anyone with information is asked to call Waltham Forest Police on 020 8721 5042 or they can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Detectives investigating the murder of a pensioner mugged in west London have named her.
Paula Castle, 85, of Westbridge Gardens, Greenford, died after being robbed in an alleyway off Oldfeld Lane South, Greenford.
Police were called at approximately 1.50pm on 19 November to reports of the incident.
Officers and the London Ambulance Service attended and found an 85-year-old woman collapsed and conscious with a head injury.
Mrs Castle, a widow who lived alone, was initially taken to Ealing Hospital, then transferred to St Mary's Hospital, where her condition deteriorated and she died at 2.14am on 20 November.
A post-mortem examination is scheduled to take place from noon today at Uxbridge Mortuary.
A post-mortem examination will be carried out on a pensioner who died after being mugged yesterday.
The eighty five year old was attacked in broad daylight in Greenford.
Detectives are appealing for witnesses to come forward.
Detectives investigating the death of an 85 year-old woman have urged witnesses to come forward. The woman received a head injury when she was robbed in Greenford this afternoon and died in hospital. Detective Chief Inspector Russell Taylor urged witnesses to help.
An 85 year-old woman has died in hospital after a robbery in Greenford in Ealing. Police were called to the scene in an alleyway yesterday afternoon where they found the victim. She later died during the night.
Her family has been informed. No arrests have yet been made.