Two robbers raid village post office

DETECTIVES were last nighthunting two men who raided a post office armed with what is believed to be an axe and gun.The armed robbers, who were wearing dark clothing, burst into the post office in The Street, Barton Mills at about 5pm.

DETECTIVES were last nighthunting two men who raided a post office armed with what is believed to be an axe and gun.

The armed robbers, who were wearing dark clothing, burst into the post office in The Street, Barton Mills at about 5pm.

The raid was the second armed robbery on a post office in west Suffolk in less than three weeks and the eighth in a spate of robberies – most of them armed - across the region in just over five weeks.

The sub postmistress was too upset to talk about the incident last nightbut was unhurt in the raid.


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Police had cordoned off the building with tape to allow forensic officers to carry out detailed examinations of the scene.

Last night a Suffolk police spokesman said: "Two men, both wearing dark clothing and one carrying what appeared to be a shotgun and the other carrying what is described as an axe, entered the post office just after 5pm.

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"They left the scene in what is described as an estate car and headed in the direction of the A11.

"No one has been hurt in this incident and we are obviously in the early stages of an enquiry and at the moment it is unclear as to whether anything has been stolen.

"We would make an early appeal for information and particularly would like to hear from anyone who witnessed this incident or saw anyone acting suspiciously in the area of the post office."

The raid follows a similar robbery on Exning Road Post Office, in Newmarket, on January 30 at a similar time – 5.20pm.

Two masked men armed with an axe and what is believed to be a gun threatened staff before fleeing in a car with a quantity of cash.

Last night a spokesman for Suffolk police said he did not know if the two robberies were linked but added it was possible.

Jon Richardson, the regional secretary of the National Federation of Sub Postmasters, said: "It has got very bad lately. We are very concerned about it actually and the number of raids there are around but I don't know how much more we can do at the moment.

"The two raids sound very similar and they are not that far away from each other. They are getting far too frequent. This is the worst we have ever been hit in this area that I know of and I have been doing this job for 18 years now.

"It seems that this area is getting hit more so than the rest of the country but I have no idea why. The villains seem to have gone out into the country so it is the nice areas like that which seem to be hit now rather than the traditional big towns."

He said that he would be attending a meeting with crime prevention officers working in Ipswich next week to see how the problem can be addressed but he conceded that there was "very little" anyone could do when confronted with a person carrying a gun.

He added that the meetings would also look into what the police can do to catch the raiders as "they do not seem to be at the moment, which is worrying".

He said: "This particular lot seem to be definitely targeting sub post offices and definitely the smaller ones as well. It is very frightening. It does seem like they could be linked."

Anyone with any information about the latest robbery should contact Suffolk police on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

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