Gang terrorised men in raid on former Bradford pub

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Waheed Khan Waheed Khan

A masked raider who was part of a sword-wielding gang that brought terror to residents at a former Bradford pub has been jailed for seven and a half years.

Waheed Khan, 26, was one of a six-strong gang brandishing weapons that broke into the former Cock and Bottle in Barkerend Road at 2am on April 20 last year.

Khan, of Annison Street, Barkerend, Bradford, was sentenced along with minicab operator Amir Shahzad and locksmith Paul Hone at Bradford Crown Court yesterday.

Getaway driver Shahzad, 20, of Birch Lane, West Bowling, Bradford, was sentenced to three years’ custody in a young offender institution.

Hone, 31, of Arkwright Street, Tyersal, Bradford, who was recruited by the gang to break into the building, was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment, suspended for two years, with 200 hours of unpaid work.

Khan, who wore a balaclava mask and went upstairs at the bedsits, pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary.

Shahzad, who brought a burglar to the scene and drove one away when the police arrived, and Hone, who took no part in terrorising the six Polish people in the bedsits, admitted burglary. Shahzad also pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of heroin on March 13.

Prosecutor Camille Morland said Khan had a previous conviction for robbing a newsagent and Shahzad had committed offences of house burglary and attempted robbery.

The court heard residents were woken in dead of night by the gang who were wielding a Samurai sword, machetes, a hammer, a saw and a bat.

Miss Morland said the raiders were after cannabis and drugs money but when that proved fruitless, they seized property, ransacking rooms and stealing phones, a laptop and a wallet.

Tomasz Tomczyk and Bartlomiej Lelek were punched in the face and a hammer was used to smash into a bedroom.

Police interrupted the raid and the burglars fled, leaving behind weapons and most of the property they had seized.

Khan and Hone were arrested in a blind alley after a chase on foot Shahzad handed himself in to the police a week later.

Judge David Hatton QC told Khan: “The people in these flats were terrorised and terrified. The premises were ransacked and electrical items stolen, there being no cannabis to steal.”

Shahzad drove a burglar to the scene “knowing full well” what was about to happen.

Judge Hatton said it was remarkable that Hone, a family man of good character, had got involved. He believed the property was unoccupied and did not go in with the burglars.

After the trial, Detective Constable Asif Khan, of Bradford District CID, said: “This was a terrifying ordeal for the victims which put them in real fear for their lives.

“The sentences handed to these individuals demonstrates the seriousness with which the police and courts treat all those involved in aggravated burglary offences; whether it be the person armed with the weapon or the driver waiting in the getaway vehicle.”

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