The UK's fastest-growing regional news network
14°C | 12°C
14°C | 11°C
14°C | 11°C
See the full forecast for your area.
Sponsored by Britelite.
Home Dartford News Article
An armed robbery at a security company's Kent depot was bungled when a loading bay was rammed instead the cash vault, a court heard.
The raiders - wielding baseball bats and wearing black boiler suits and masks - were forced to flee empty-handed from Loomis UK in Swanley, jurors were told.
Maidstone Crown Court heard officers later found a balaclava, snood and a stopwatch dumped in bushes as well as an abandoned Mitsubishi Warrior 4x4.
Prosecutor Christopher May said forensic tests on the balaclava and snood revealed a DNA profile matching that of 52-year-old Raymond Betson.
"The probability of it originating from someone else unrelated to him was less than one in a billion," he told the jury.
Betson, formerly of Chatham, now of Clifton Crescent, Folkestone, denies attempted robbery. He has no legal representation and is conducting his own defence.
"The digger had been driven up to the side of the building and then rammed into the wall, using the bucket end to cause a big hole..." Christopher May, prosecuting
Mr May said it was a planned, organised attempt to rob the depot on an industrial estate in Mark Way, where more than £1million could be held.
A security van was leaving the depot at just before 5am on March 23, 2012, when it caught a glancing blow from a JCB-type digger accelerating past.
As other staff were loading up a van at the depot, they heard what sounded like an explosion. They then saw the bucket of the stolen digger sticking through the wall.
"The digger had been driven up to the side of the building and then rammed into the wall, using the bucket end to cause a big hole," said Mr May.
It reversed back and several disguised men were seen holding baseball bats, he said, adding that some had bags they hoped to fill with cash.
"In fact, the robbers - a team of organised armed robbers who smashed their way in - had gone into the loading bay and not the cash vault, so there was no cash they could get their hands on," said Mr May.
The digger was driven away, ripping a hole in a secure fence to make their escape. It was later found abandoned and had been stolen the previous day from Eynsford railway station.
The 4x4 with a false number plate was found "grounded and stuck" on a nearby farm.
The trial continues.
Click here for more news from Dartford.
Click here for more news from around the county.