Thieves on stolen motor-scooter jailed after string of 18 London robberies
- Credit: MPS
Two dangerous thieves on a high-powered stolen motor-scooter who snatched mobile phones from unsuspecting pedestrians have finally been jailed after a 20-mile chase through busy streets and along the M11 motorway.
They carried out a string of 18 robberies on the revved-up machine, making their getaway hurtling through traffic in the East End and across London.
Sharuk Sheraji, 22-year-old pillion rider from Sebastion House in Hoxton Street, Shoreditch, was sentenced today to two years behind bars.
Zuriel Hutson, 21, from Highbury in north London, who was steering, got two-and-a-half years.
Both admitted conspiracy to steal the scooter when the appeared in the dock at Isleworth crown court on Friday and breaching Criminal Behaviour orders against them imposed at Wood Green crown court in January. Hutson also admitted dangerous driving.
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One of their snatch robberies was in the East End, two in Hackney, five in north London and 10 in Westminster.
Police were alerted to the Saturday robberies on November 26 and mobilised a fleet of unmarked pursuit cars backed up by the national Police Air Service helicopter.
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Pillion rider Sheraji jumped off the bike in Tottenham and tried to get away on foot, but was caught—and found have the 18 stolen phones on him.
Hutson rode off along the A406 North Circular to the M11 at speeds up to 90mph, followed by the police helicopter above.
He can be seen on the police helicopter video weaving in and out of motorway traffic, often on the wrong side, against oncoming cars, causing drivers to swerve out of his path to avoid head-on collisions.
Several minor collisions occurred, until he tried to squeeze through the gap between two cars—and crashed, with his shoes knocked off as he skidded and rolled along the carriageway, narrowly avoiding being hit by the car behind.
But Hutson got back up, restarted the scooter and continued along the hard shoulder against oncoming traffic.
A ‘stinger’ tyre-deflation device was used ahead of him, which eventually forced him to a stop on the slip road leading to the M25. He tried to escape bare foot, but was captured.
“The pair had no regard for anyone but themselves,” Det Chief Insp Steve Heatley said.
“Hutson could have caused serious injury to the public and other motorists in the callous execution of these crimes and attempting to evade justice.
“These perpetrators of audacious thefts have received a robust judicial outcome with time in jail, which sends a strong message that such incidents will be dealt with robustly by police and the courts.”
Detectives are urging the public to be aware of their surroundings at all times and keep phones secure—snatch crime, they point out, “happens in an instant”.