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Three men guilty of armed robbery of Premier League footballers' brothers

|News, Violent crime

Three men have been convicted of carrying out an armed robbery of the brothers of two Premier League footballers.

Talleko Lemonious, 28, from Wythenshawe, Tariq Dervan, 22, from Staffordshire, and Romario Harmer, 21, from Old Trafford, were found guilty of carrying out the armed robbery at a café in Manchester four years ago.

At 10am on Saturday 12 January 2019 they burst into Little Rock Cafe in Princess Street, Moss Side, wearing dark clothing and face coverings and carried out an armed robbery.

They hit customers with a baseball bat so hard the handle broke off, and threatened them with a machete and a sawn off shotgun whilst demanding their watches. 

Five customers, including the brothers of Marcus Rashford and Trent Alexander-Arnold, were forced to hand over their watches, and one of them, who was not wearing a watch, was forced to hand over his wallet and the keys for his Range Rover worth £70,000.

The men fled the scene at speed in the stolen Range Rover and a white BMW. They drove in convoy to an address in Fallowfield where Talleko Lemonious, Tariq Dervan and Romario Harmer were arrested an hour later. 

At the house, police found items stolen in the robbery, including the watches and wallets, along with ski masks with three men's DNA on. A sawn off shotgun was found hidden in a nearby bush which had Harmer's DNA on. A machete and baseball bat handle were found in the BMW, plus Dervan's DNA was found on the BMW and on a pair of sunglasses in the door. 

Lemonious, Dervan and Harmer gave no comment in their interviews with the police, and pleaded not guilty at court.

Following a trial at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court, they were found guilty of five counts of robbery, possession of a bladed article (machete) possession of a firearm at the time of committing an offence (sawn off shotgun) and possession of an offensive weapon (baseball bat).

Carl Miles, for the CPS, said: "Talleko Lemonious, Tariq Dervan and Romario Harmer carried out a terrifying armed robbery at a café in broad day light. In their greed, they showed utter disregard for the impact on their targeted victims and other customers and staff in the cafe, who genuinely feared for their lives, and were not afraid to use violence to get what they wanted. 

"We worked closely with the police to build a strong case against them, including DNA and CCTV evidence, which we presented to the jury. After careful consideration of this evidence the jury found all three men guilty of all the offences they faced.

"I would like to thank the victims for their help in bringing these violent men to justice in order to protect the public from further harm at their hands. I hope that the conclusion of the trial helps them move forward with their lives."

Notes to editors

  • Carl Miles is a Senior Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West.

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