Armed raiders hit betting shops in quick succession

Ladbrokes, Gildredge Road, cordoned off by police after the raid
Ladbrokes, Gildredge Road, cordoned off by police after the raid

TWO betting shops were targeted by armed raiders within hours of each other.

A man wearing a false moustache tried to rob Betfred in Cornfield Road, pictured right, on Sunday night and the following morning a hold-up took place at Ladbrokes in Gildredge Road, above, at 8.40am.

Two other betting shops in Brighton and Hove have been targeted in the last 10 days and yesterday police were waiting to see if all four are linked.

The first attempted robbery was at 10.50pm at Betfred when a man wearing a false moustache threatened a female member of staff with an imitation handgun.

The shocked female employee managed to run into a back room of the shop and lock the door.

The suspect left empty-handed.

Detective Inspector Paul Phelps from Eastbourne CID said, “This was an alarming experience for the member of staff and the one customer who was in the shop at the time. Luckily no one was hurt.

“We would like to hear from anyone who saw a man acting suspiciously in the area shortly before the incident or witnessed him leaving.”

The suspect is described as white, 6’, aged 30 to 40 and of proportionate build.

He appears to have been wearing a false brown moustache, a navy rain jacket with the hood up, which was covering his face, and he was carrying a dark rucksack over his shoulder.

At the Ladbrokes robbery, a man walked into the shop, pointed a hand gun at staff before making off with a sum of money. No one was hurt.

DI Phelps said, “We are obviously very concerned this is the second armed robbery in 24 hours.

“We are in the early stages of the investigation and it is not clear yet if this robbery is linked to the attempted armed robbery at Betfreds or the two at bookmakers in Hove and Brighton in the last 10 days.”

The suspect in the Ladbrokes robbery is described as white, between 5’ 11’ and 6’ 2’, bald with a close-shaven grey beard.

He was wearing a black wool hat and a blue rain coat.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Sussex Police on 0845 60 70 999 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.