Four people, who targeted students in a series of robberies in Sheffield city centre, have been sentenced to a total of over eight years in prison.
The three men and one woman were charged with multiple offences, including robbery, fraud, handling stolen goods and possession of a bladed article.
Garfield Nelson, 59, of Crossley Close, Maltby, Rebecca Kerrigan, 32, of HMP Newhall and Lupin Ntungi, 41, of Spotswood Mount all pleaded guilty on the day of their trials at Sheffield Crown Court.
Stephen Green, 37, of HMP Doncaster, also pleaded guilty to robbery.
The charges relate to three incidents in Sheffield between July and October 2019, in which the victims were ‘befriended’ by members of the group on the street, before having valuables stolen.
Detective Constable Yvonne Fairbrother said: “In two of the incidents, the victims were students who were on their way home after nights out in the city centre.
“On 22 September, a young man was approached by Kerrigan, who engaged him in conversation before guiding him to a cash machine and coercing him into withdrawing £60.
“Kerrigan then managed to take the money and the victim’s bank card, when he tried to take it back, Ntungi appeared, hitting the student with a walking stick before leaving the scene.
“Kerrigan later withdrew £800 from the account at several locations across the city, she was caught on CCTV with Ntungi by her side.”
The second incident saw the whole group assault another student on Cavendish Street, he was also marched to a cash machine after Kerrigan started chatting to him.
DC Fairbrother continued: “Whilst Kerrigan did the groundwork with the victim, two men, later identified as Nelson and Green, followed from a short distance away.
“Once the victim tried to get away, the two men assaulted him, punching him and stealing cash, a ring, a chain and bracelet. Fortunately, the young man wasn’t seriously injured, but unsurprisingly he has been left shaken by what happened.”
“These four individuals shamelessly targeted young people and attempted to befriend them, before coercing them into handing over money. They are dangerous and they should not be on the streets, I am pleased that they have all received custodial sentences for their crimes.”
Nelson received a two-year sentence for robbery; Kerrigan was jailed for four years and four months for handling stolen goods, fraud by false representation and robbery and Ntungi received a two-year sentence, also for robbery. Stephen Green was sentenced to 32 months in prison.