High speed chase after lorry stolen full of alcohol from distillery

Five men have been jailed for a booze heist and a lorry chase spanning several counties.

The alarm was raised when a gin distillery in Wadebridge, Cornwall was broken into in the early hours of 8 September. A large quantity of premium gin, rum and champagne was stolen at a value of around £90,000.

The theft had been extensively planned and each of the five had designated roles. The premises and offices were ransacked, bottles of alcohol were opened and smashed on the floor, entry points were damaged leaving thousands of pounds worth of damage.

 

 

 

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A short time later a heavy goods vehicle was spotted on the M5 on cloned plates and was tracked onto the M42.

A rolling road block was put in place by our Central Motorway Police Group and, after it failed to stop for officers, the lorry was stung causing the tyres to deflate.

But the driver continued along the M42 and exited at junction 9 where he continued around the island and attempted to join the motorway exit slip-road the wrong way into oncoming traffic.

A police vehicle attempted to block the lorry, but the car was rammed, leaving an officer with severe bruising and whiplash.

The lorry hit another car, causing minor injuries to three occupants, before another police vehicle used tactical contact to force the lorry into the central barrier bringing it to a stop, again injuring another one of our officers.

The driver of the lorry immediately made off across live lanes of the motorway but was detained after a short footchase and the front seat passenger was arrested on the grass verge.

Inside the rear of the vehicle officers found three men with the stolen alcohol.

All five pleaded guilty at court and have been sentenced today (29 Feb) at Birmingham Crown Court as follows:

  • Driver Adam Leek, aged 40 from Radleys Walk, Birmingham was jailed for five years and eight months for conspiracy to commit burglary, two counts of assaulting an emergency worker, dangerous driving, disqualified driving and without insurance. He was disqualified from driving for 65 months and will be required to sit an extended driving test before being allowed behind the wheel again.
  • Passenger Sam Hall, aged 29 of no fixed address, was jailed for 31 months for conspiracy to commit burglary burglary and possession of a class B drug.
  • James Delaney, aged 37, and Joshua Selvey, aged 23 both from The Radleys, Birmingham, and Reiss Crombie, aged 32 from Wyndhurst Road, Birmingham, were each jailed for 33, 28 and 28 months respectively for conspiracy to commit burglary. Selvey was also convicted of possession of a class B drug.

Delaney failed to appear at court for a second time and was sentenced in his absence. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.

Inspector Sion Hathaway, from our Central Motorway Police Group, said: “Our officers are highly trained at driving in unpredictable and dangerous situations. They continually assess any pursuit to determine risk to the subject vehicle and other road users.

“The driver of the lorry had only one aim, which was to avoid capture, no matter the cost to other members of the public.

“We were assisted by the National Police Air Service to bring the incident to conclusion as safely as possible.

“The brave actions of my staff are a reminder of how police officers don’t hesitate to put themselves in harm’s way to protect the public. Had the officers not taken positive action to stop this vehicle the consequences could have been catastrophic.

“The serious injuries suffered by two officers left them in severe pain and needing lengthy treatment, which they are continuing to recover from today.

”I applaud their actions on the day which no doubt prevented potential injury to members of the public.

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