Gunman posing as flat renter to rob estate agents with shotgun gets 15 years

Shotgun robber jailed... Mark O'Reilly, 24

Shotgun robber jailed... Mark O'Reilly, 24 - Credit: MPS

A gunman posing as a prospective renter to trick his way into flats has been jailed for 15 years for three armed robberies with a shotgun and also for possessing fake firearms.

Mark O’Reilly, 24, put unsuspecting estate agents and their tenants through terrifying ordeals with a sawn-off double-barrelled shotgun.

He met the first estate agent as a prospective tenant in June at a property in Bromley-by-Bow in London’s East End.

But once inside, O’Reilly waved the shotgun at him and the 20-year-old occupant of the flat.

He bound their hands and feet and searched the flat, then held the gun to their heads to extort password codes for bank cards, computers and mobile phones before robbing them.

He carried out a similar hold-up of another estate agent while viewing a property a week later at Wood Green in north London—this time with his girlfriend—forcing him at gunpoint to hand over cash, driving licence, car keys and a mobile phone.

But O’Reilly was arrested within days on forensic evidence linking him to both robberies, after an extensive manhunt across London by the Met’s Flying Squad with Tower Hamlets and Haringey CIDs.

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O’Reilly, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty at Snaresbrook crown court in July to both robberies and on Friday was sentenced to 12 years, and admitted possessing an imitation firearm while committing an offence and while being arrested and got a further 15 years, both sentences to run together.

“He was calculated in planning and carrying out these robberies,” Det Con Alan Henderson from Tower Hamlets CID said after the case. “He has shown a cold indifference to his victims’ suffering.

“I hope jailing him helps his victims recover from the mental trauma he inflicted.”

Detectives believe O’Reilly was “planning more robberies” when they tracked him down when he was caught with imitation firearms.