Men jailed for 30 years over robbery of popular Sheffield restaurant owner

COURT: Court Case
COURT: Court Case
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Four men are behind bars for a total of 30 years for robbing a Sheffield restaurant owner after they followed him home.

Jeroham Julian Duncan, aged 23; Ashley Phillip Murray, 24 and Jamal Ato, 21, tracked the owner of BBs Italian restaurant as he made his way home after he finished a shift at his Division Street business in Sheffield city centre.

They knocked on his door, pretending to be police officers, but were not allowed in.

The following night, the trio, accompanied by 27-year-old Jason Andrew Wood, lay in wait in the restaurant owner’s garden and ambushed him as he returned home from work.

South Yorkshire Police said the robbers subjected the businessman to a ‘nasty attack’ as they kicked and punched him as they forced their way into his home.

They stole £80 and grabbed a phone being used by the businessman’s wife in bed while she attempted to call the police to report the raid in September last year.

The raid is said to have been planned as ‘revenge’ after Ato’s father, who used to work at BBs, left the restaurant following a disagreement with the owner.

Detective Constable John Bowerman, of South Yorkshire Police, said: “This was a nasty, planned attack which was highly traumatic for the victims.

“We believe on the first occasion, the group had planned their attack and had the victim not asked to see some identification, he would have been attacked.

“Ato’s father briefly worked at the restaurant and after quitting his position there following a disagreement with the owner, the robbery happened at Ato’s instigation to try and get revenge for his father.

“A robbery is extremely invasive and traumatic for the victims involved. I am pleased that all four defendants have been held accountable for this offence.”

Both Duncan, of Deer Park View, Stannington and Murray, of Sicey Avenue, Shiregeen, pleaded guilty to the robbery but Ato, of Middle Hay Place, Gleadless Valley and Wood, of Bowshaw Close, Batemoor, were found guilty after a seven-day trial.

Ato and Wood were both sentenced to eight years behind bars for robbery, with Wood receiving an additional two-month-sentence for possessing cannabis.

Murray pleaded guilty to robbery and was jailed for nine years and eight months.

Duncan, who also pleaded guilty to robbery, pleaded to seven charges of conspiracy to commit burglary and was sentenced to seven years and eight months in prison.

Between May and September last year, Duncan stole £53,928 worth of goods from properties across Sheffield, including four cars.

A fifth offender, Daniel Lee Hancock, 26, of Norton Park Road, Norton, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit three burglaries with Duncan in the Ranmoor and Totley areas of Sheffield.

He was jailed for two years and nine months.