Ilford robber spared jail after trying to hold up bookmakers with tin of pilchards

Snaresbrook Crown Court Pic: John Stillwell/PA

Snaresbrook Crown Court Pic: John Stillwell/PA - Credit: PA Archive/Press Association Ima

A man who attempted to rob a bookmakers after pretending his tin of pilchards was a bomb has been given a suspended prison sentence.

Rory Seager, 18, of Jefferson Close, Ilford attempted to rob his local William Hill bookmakers, after he had spent the day gambling on roulette machines in order to recoup the £1,800 he owed a friend, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.

As he was running out of money, he spent his last 99p on a tin of John West pilchards and threatened cashier Adeyemi Awomudu, with them-wrapped in a black bag-pretending he had a bomb.

Unconvinced, Mr Awomudu pretended he was getting cash to give Seager, but instead locked himself in a secure back room.

Furious at being thwarted, Seager hurled the pilchard contents across the shop and fled from the bookmakers.

He was later arrested after the cashier recognised him. Seager confessed immediately and later pleaded guilty to attempted robbery and one count of communicating false information about a bomb hoax.

The court heard Seager had been suffering from untreated depression and psychosis and Tourette’s Syndrome during the robbery attempt on 20 December last year.

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Seager was given a two year suspended sentence, two year’s supervision and ordered to undergo mental health treatment.

He was also barred from betting shops for 12 months.