Press release

Jail term increased for robbers who targeted elderly

Gang of robbers have their sentences increased after the Solicitor General's intervention

Solicitor General Robert Buckland
Solicitor General Robert Buckland

A gang of robbers who targeted elderly people will spend longer behind bars after Solicitor General Robert Buckland QC MP referred their original sentences to the Court of Appeal as unduly lenient.

Between the 1st and 4th May 2017, the gang of 5, led by Gerald McCann, 23, committed a series of robberies against elderly victims, specifically targeting them because of their vulnerability. The men used force against the victims upon entering the houses. In one case, an 80 year old man was struck on the head with a metal coffee pot. Valuable items of jewellery and money were taken from the properties.

McCann, who was 22 at the time, was convicted of robbery and possession of a prohibited article at Leeds Crown Court last November. He was jailed for 8 years and 4 months. The Court of Appeal agreed the sentence was too low and increased it to 10 years and 4 months.

The rest of the gang were sentenced to time in a young offenders’ institute. The second offender, who was 18 at the time, received 6 years and 9 months. His sentence has been increased to 7 years 8 months. The third offender, who was 17 at the time, received 5 years and 4 months, his sentence has been increased to 6 years 6 months.

The forth offender, who was 15 at the time, received 4 years, his sentence has been increased to 5 years. The fifth offender who was also 15, received 4 years and 4 months, his sentence has been increased to 5 years 3 months.

Speaking after the hearing, the Solicitor General said:

“This group of young men purposely set out to target vulnerable and elderly people. Many lives have been affected by their actions, and some of the victims no longer feel safe in their own homes. The Court’s decision to increase these sentences show that crimes of this nature will not be tolerated.”

Published 1 February 2018