A TERRIFIED teenager was robbed at knifepoint on his way to work by a gang of youths who had been on a all night drink and drugs binge.
The 17-year-old was forced to transfer £300 from his savings account which he had received for his forthcoming birthday.
Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court heard how the boy was walking through Altrincham town centre at 8.40am on December 1 last year when he was approached by four men, including Callum Duffy and John Hasan, who offered to sell him cocaine and cannabis.
Verity Quaile, prosecuting, said how the boy told them he had no money on him and, feeling intimated, shouted to a passing member of the public for help, but they did not stop.
“At which point Mr Duffy said, ‘That’s a bad idea. Don’t do it again or I will shoot you. I’ve got a gun.”
When they boy showed the gang the empty contents of his wallet, seeing a bank card, they frogmarched him to a cashpoint machine.
There were funds in the account and so the machine declined the transaction.
“The men became annoyed and so ushered him to an alleyway not far away where he was ordered to take out his mobile phone and access his bank account.
In total the boy, who had a knife held to his throat, was forced to transfer £300 out of his savings account.
The robbers took the boy’s driving licence and told him: “We’ve got your address now. If you call the police I’ll come and take your and rape her.”
The boy told his boss what had happened and police were contacted.
Duffy, aged 20, of no fixed address and Hasan, aged 20, of Redbrook Road, Timperley, both pleaded guilty to robbery. Duffy additionally admitted robbing a petrol station in Westhoughton on May 15 last year.
Michael Brady, defending Duffy, said; “At that time he was a young man intent on self destruction. He seemed to regard being sent to the Young Offender Institution as a badge of honour.
“It may be the penny has finally dropped with this young man that if he carries on like this he’s going to spend the rest of his life in various institutions.”
Thomas McKail, for Hasan said: “He is thoroughly ashamed of the way he has behaved.”
Judge Paul Lawton sentenced Duffy to five years in a Young Offender Institution and Hasan to three years and four months.
He told them: “The use of knives, as two will be well aware, has become endemic in Manchester and beyond. There’s nothing cool about carrying a knife. A knife is as dangerous as a gun. A stab to the body anywhere that cuts a main artery and death is almost assured.
“So these courts are going to clamp down people committing robberies with knives and that message needs to go out.”