Historical Heists

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What: Securitas Depot Robbery When: 22nd February 2006 Where: Tonbridge, England

On the 22nd of February 2006, one of the UKs largest cash robbery heists was carried out and they almost succeeded. 

The heist began on 21st February 2006, with the kidnapping of Colin Dixon, the depot manager. 2 of the 7 gang members posed as policemen and managed to pull Colin over, when he was driving home along the A249 near Stockbury. They were able to convince Colin to pull stop due to their car impersonating that of an unmarked police car. He was told to turn off his engine and leave his vehicle. The gang members handcuffed him and put into the back of the unmarked car. The kidnapping soon became apparent to Colin when they held him at gun point. The 2 men drove him to Elderden Farm, near Staplehurt. 

At around the same time of Colin’s kidnapping, 2 other gang members targeted the Dixon’s family home and seized his wife and 8-year-old son. The gang transported them to the farm where Colin was being held.  The gang began their interrogation and threatened Colin’s wife, and son’s lives if he didn’t cooperate with their plan. 

Around 01:00am on 22nd February 2006, the Dixon’s were transported in separate vehicles to the Securitas Depot, arriving at approximately 01:21am where Colin was forced to help the gang evade the building’s security system.

Once the gang gained entry, the heavily armed men detained 14 staff members, along with Mrs Dixon and their son, in empty cash cages. They managed to fill 17 empty cash cages and 3 trolleys full of bank notes and loaded it into their truck. The building’s CCTV recorded the entire robbery and around 02:36am, they made their getaway. 

Around 30 minutes after the gang departed, a staff member managed to break free from the cash cage, released everyone else and raised the alarm immediately. Thankfully, none of the victims involved in the robbery were harmed.

The gang members made off with £53,116,760 in stolen cash in the 75-minute-long heist. The largest cash robbery in British History!

Kent Police immediately started their extensive investigation and within 72 hours of the robbery, enough evidence had been gathered for a suspect list, including two burnt out cars and DNA samples. As investigations progressed, more evidence was obtained including a white van that was found in the Ashford International Hotel car park, containing £1.3 million in cash, balaclavas, and heavy firearms. Several cash cages and money bags were also found dumped in a field, near Detling.

Where most of the robbers wore balaclavas to hide their identity, it became clear to the Police that a local MUA assisted some of the men to help protect their identities, by providing prosthetics. This eventually led the MUA to turn Queen’s Evidence, to testify against the men, in exchange for immunity. 

Kent Police said the heist had been meticulously planned by an organised crime gang and believed MMA fighter Lee Murray, was the mastermind behind this astute heist. Other suspects included the gangs inside man, Emir Hysenja, who had started working at the depot 2 months prior to the robbery and provided the gang with video footage from inside the warehouse, using a small body camera. Also involved in the heist was Stuart Royle, Lea Rusha, Roger Coutts, Jetmir Bucpapa and Paul Allen. After a 7-month long trial, they were sentenced to life imprisonment.

By 2007 police had recovered £21 Million and made 36 associated arrests. However, the aftermath of what took place that night led to Securitas to shut down the handling of cash and eventually sold the Depot. 

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