Jail term reduced for armed robber who terrified Sheffield students

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An armed robber who terrorised two students after breaking into their Sheffield house has had his jail term cut by more than a year.

Lee Marvin Whomersley, 39, of Infirmary Road, was jailed for nine years at Sheffield Crown Court in May 2013.

He had his face covered and was carrying a Taser during the raid in Walkley in November 2012, while his associate was carrying a gun that was held to one of the students’ heads.

But his jail term has now been cut - because his fellow robber has already has his time in prison reduced.

Whormersley had pleaded guilty to two counts of robbery, two of false imprisonment, possession of a firearm with intent and having a disguised firearm when he was originally sentenced.

But the term was reduced to seven years and 10 months at London’s Criminal Court of Appeal on Friday.

Whomersley and Martin Andrew Gaffoor broke into the student house in South Road, Walkley, early on November 24, 2012, Mr Justice Cooke told the court.

Gaffoor had a 9mm pistol, while Whomersley had a Taser and both had their faces covered.

They threatened two students and demanded bank cards and PIN numbers before tying them up and pushing socks in their mouths.

Gaffoor ejected a cartridge and showed the bullet to one of the victims, saying you ‘now know it is real’, said the judge.

He gave the gun to Whomersley, while he took the bank cards to the letterbox and passed them through to a third accomplice to take to a cashpoint and withdraw money.

Gaffoor got a phone call saying the first student had given the wrong pin number and then held the gun to the victim’s head to make him give the correct one, the court heard.

Both victims were sprayed using a fire extinguisher to remove forensic evidence, said the judge, who was sitting with Lord Justice Davis and Judge Simon Tonking.

More than £3,000 of items were stolen, as well as £430 using the debit cards.

Whomersley pleaded guilty on the basis that he had been pressured into the robbery by threats of violence from Gaffoor, who was the ‘leader’ of the plot.

Gaffoor was jailed for 11 years but that was reduced to nine years at the Appeal Court in January 2014. Mr Justice Cooke said: “In our judgement, the starting point for Whomersley needs to be reduced in the same way as it was for Gaffoor, taking into account their different roles.”