Luton robbers ‘thought they were above the law’

editorial image

Three men involved in a series of violent robberies in Luton have been jailed for a total of 22-and-a-half years.

Philip Stephenson, 31, Jamie Recardo, 24, and Malaki St Juste, 19, lured two victims under the pretext of buying cannabis or selling mobile phones then violently assaulted them – often using weapons to threaten them including a machete and a knife.

Malaki St Juste

Malaki St Juste

Another man was viciously assaulted in his own home which the offenders then ransacked, stealing his savings.

All three pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit three robberies committed over six days in March last year.

Recardi was present at all three, while Stephenson and St Juste both admitted their presence at one of the three.

The robberies took place in the car park of The Old Moat House in Luton, a house in Russell Rise and Spinney Wood.

Stephenson also pleaded guilty to committing a further robbery in which a ‘stun gun’ was used on the victim in September last year, while he was on bail for the other robberies.

They were sentenced at Luton Crown Court on Friday.

Stephenson, of Brussels Way, was jailed for nine years with a five-year extended licence due to being considered ‘dangerous’ by judge David Farrell QC.

Recardo, of Copenhagen Close, was also sentenced to nine years, while St Juste, of Aynsford Road, was locked up for four-and-a-half years.

Detective Constable Tom Worden said: “These were nasty robberies in which the offenders thought nothing of using the threat of extreme violence in order to steal small amounts of cash, mobile phones or cigarettes.

“They targeted their victims and lured them to isolated areas so they could outnumber and overpower them.

“The offenders thought they were above the law, but such behaviour will not be tolerated and we will work hard to bring offenders to justice.

“The lengthy prison sentences should send a clear message of the consequences for anyone who thinks this type of crime is acceptable.”