Man arrested, two on run after string of armed robberies

Detectives have charged a 30-year-old man on the mid north coast in relation to a string of terrifying armed robberies at Sydney businesses last month.

A 30-year-old man has been charged over a string of terrifying armed robberies in Sydney last month after ‘laying low’ on the mid-north coast.

The three robberies occurred in the space of two days in January at businesses in Canterbury, Wiley Park and Hurlstone Park in Sydney.

Police allege that on January 3, three armed men threatened staff and patrons at the Canterbury Hotel at 4am before stealing cash from poker machines and fleeing.

“Three individuals armed with knives and a gun with their faces covered entered the hotel and confronted a lady worker, who was working behind the bar,” Detective Acting Superintendent Grant Taylor said.

Act Supt Taylor said the nature of the alleged robberies would have been frightening for staff.

“Most certainly any robbery in the middle of the night where you are confronted with men with firearms and you’re not sure whether you are going to be shot is something I would find very confronting,” he said.

On January 4, a second robbery occurred at a convenience store at New Canterbury Rd at Hurlstone Park about 2.40am

Police allege a man with a gun threatened an employee before stealing cash and cigarettes and fleeing.

About 7am later that morning, two men armed with knives and a gun allegedly threatened an employee at a service station on Punchbowl Rd, Wiley Park, stealing cash and cigarettes.

The men allegedly stole the employee’s watch, before returning it and running away.

Strike Force Profert was formed to investigate the robberies, and after releasing CCTV footage to the public, the 30-year-old Glebe man was arrested in Coffs Harbour this morning.

“We aren’t quite sure why this individual was in Coffs Harbour, but he was certainly lying low,” Detective Superintendent Taylor said.

The man is expected to be charged later today.

Police are still on the hunt for two other men connected to the robberies.

Strike Force Profert is also investigating more incidents that may be connected to the three men and more arrests and charges are expected soon.

The man was charged with a slew of offences including three counts of robbery while armed with a dangerous weapon, three counts of acquiring a pistol subject to firearms prohibition order, take/detain person in company with intent to obtain advantage and dealing with property proceeds of a crime.

The man was refused bail and will face Port Macquarie Bail Court tomorrow.

Extracted from Daily Telegraph

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