Gang's string of cash machine raids across the East

The gang using power tools to cut open a cash machine at Stotfold in Bedfordshire Credit: Police

A gang of four thieves who raided stores and homes across the East and the Midlands has been jailed.

Using power tools to break open cash machines, the gang stole nearly £700,000 over 14 months. They used high-performance cars in their getaways, out-running police at speeds of more than 150mph.

The four men, all from the Midlands, carried out a series of raids in the East, including a Co-op store in Stotfold in Bedfordshire, another in Yaxley in Cambridgeshire, one in Olney in Buckinghamshire, as well as Downham Market in West Norfolk and two ATM machines on the same night in Beccles and Bungay in Suffolk.

They would break into shops at night, using power saws and blow torches to cut open the back of cash machines. They managed to steal £83,000 from one of the ATMs in Suffolk.

Noel Reilly, 33 of Birchalls, West Midlands, and David Holmes, 31, of Walsall, were both jailed for seven years. Simon Phillips, 33, of Billesley, West Midlands was sentenced to five years and Darren Buckley, 35, of Acocks Green, Birmingham, was jailed for five years, seven months.