TWO COVENTRY men who stole thousands of pounds on a nationwide crime spree have been jailed for over nine years.
Scott Johnston, aged 35 from Lancia Close and Scott Warner, aged 33 from Missing Oak Close, Bedworth, have been convicted of 19 convenience store raids across the country.
From York to Cheshire, Bristol to Southsea, and even the Isle of Wight, Johnston and Warner forced the main doors of the premises and ransacked the self-service tills for cash before making their getaway.
The duo pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing at Birmingham Crown Court and were sentenced on last week (27 May).
Warner was sentenced to 52 months for conspiracy to commit burglary and Johnston was sentenced to 56 months with an extra six months for dangerous driving, for which he will be disqualified for two years and will need to sit an extended retest before getting behind the wheel again.
Between May 21 and July 17 last year, the pair targeted four Tesco Express and 15 Sainsbury Local convenience stores in the early hours of the morning wearing masks and dark clothing.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Rob Clarke said: “Johnston and Warner thought they could evade capture by travelling far and wide using their tried and trusted MO and even though they had been arrested and bailed in other police force areas they brazenly continued their offending.
“But a combination of Automated Number Plate Recognition work along with forensic and phone analysis linked them both to each raid.
“Faced with the evidence against them, they had little choice other than to admit their guilt and the court accepted 12 guilty pleas each which covered all 19 burglaries.
“I am satisfied that they have been given custodial sentences.”
The stores targeted were as follows:
May 18 – Sainsbury Local, Compton, Wolverhampton
May 20 − Tesco Express, Measham, Leicestershire
May 21- Sainsbury Local, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire
June 2 – Sainsbury Local, Compton, Wolverhampton
June 4- Sainsbury Local, Marlow, Buckinghamshire
June 7- Sainsbury Local, Hoole, Chester
June 12 – Sainsbury Local, Knutsfort, Cheshire
June 13 – Sainsbury Local, Southampton
June 18 – Sainsbury Local, Sandown, Isle of Wight
June 19- Sainsbury Local, Albert Road, Southsea
June 19- Sainsbury Local, Palmerstone Road, Southsea
June 23 – Sainsbury Local, Hove
July 2 − Tesco Express, Southbourne Grove, Bournemouth
July 2 − Tesco Express, Tuckton Road, Bournemouth
July 6 – Sainsbury Local, Fulford Road, York
July 6 – Sainsbury Local, Bootham, York
July 14 – Sainsbury Local, Bishopston, Bristol
July 15 – Sainsbury Local, Carshalton, Surrey
July 17 – Sainsbury Local, Holmes Chapel, Cheshire