Everything is in the planning! But, sometimes the rewards are that tempting you forget how to plan. Tonight a post office manager and his accomplices are starting jail sentences for trying to frame an innocent worker as they stole almost £85,000 in a botched burglary.
Warwick Crown Court was told how Omar Ahmed, 25, and Mohammed Ahad, 24, crept into the locked area of a post office after borrowing a co-worker’s keys. They then tried to frame the colleague by leaving the keys at the crime scene and concocting a false alibi, a jury was told.
But when they were released on bail, they were caught when Ahad used some of the cash to buy a £9,000 Rolex watch and a £37,000 Mercedes.
They were arrested and on Monday, March 3, they confessed to the burglary in court.
Ahmed, of Cradley Heath, was jailed for two years and two months while Ahad, of Rowley Regis, was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison. Their accomplice Mohammed Hussain, 25, also of Cradley Heath, was jailed for 11 months after admitting perverting the course of justice by giving them a false alibi.
The court was told that in November 2017 Ahmed recommended Ahad for a job as a part-time assistant in the post office in Henley Street, Stratford-upon-Avon.
Over the coming weeks, they plotted to capitalise on the failure to follow proper procedures at the post office.
In a text exchange between them in January 2018, Ahad said: “We need to take advantage with all this madness going on.” The next day Ahmed was seen by another member of staff fiddling with the CCTV system and taking photographs of it on his phone.
Ahmed took advantage of the lax security procedures in place to con another member of staff into giving him keys to the safe area in a botched bid to frame her for the crime.
On January 6, 2018 Ahmed asked a female colleague: “Wouldn’t you rob the place if it was worth it?”
She replied that she would “never be that stupid” but later that day she lent Ahmed her keys to the secure area. After he finished work at 5.30pm, two members of staff remained to cash up the Post Office and put £84,059 in the safe.
At 11.15pm, Ahad and Ahmed drove to the post office where they used the colleague’s keys to get into the safe area and stole the cash.
In a bid to cover their tracks and create a false alibi, they deliberately left their mobile phones at a shisha bar in Birmingham.
Jonathan Veasey-Pugh, prosecuting, said: “They then left their colleague’s keys in the premises, presumably in an attempt to implicate her.
“She did come under suspicion as a result, and when Ahmed and Ahad were arrested three days later they put forward an alibi that they were at the shisha bar at the time.”
Hussain sent a message to another friend saying that “Omar got into some s**t,” and asked him to support their alibi. During a police interview, he changed his story and claimed he “must have been mistaken”.
Last April Ahad went into Watches of Switzerland in Birmingham city centre and bought a £9,600 Rolex watch and in July he bought a £37,000 Mercedes.
Mark Hemming, defending Ahad, said he had been studying an accountancy degree course which he had to leave after his arrest.
Sophie Murray, defending Hussain, said he had a first-class degree in quantity surveying and a diploma in accountancy. She said he had no idea providing a false alibi would implicate the innocent postal worker.