Two to be sentenced over Gleneagles raid

Two men are to be sentenced of their role in a “terrifying” £500,000 armed robbery at the prestigious Gleneagles Hotel.

Richard Fleming and Liam Richardson carried hammers, a machete and a pistol when they raided the famous hotel in Auchterarder, Perthshire, on June 27 last year.

The masked men made off with dozens of high-value Rolex watches worth more than half a million pounds, which have not yet been recovered.

Fleming, 42, from London, who denied being involved, was convicted by a jury in September following a trial at the High Court in Edinburgh.

Richardson, 30, also of London, admitted his part in the robbery before the trial got under way.

The pair, described by police as organised criminals, will be sentenced by Judge Lady Carmichael in Edinburgh on Wednesday.

The nature of the assault and the “extreme” level of violence shown led staff and visitors to the complex to think they were witnessing a terror attack, police said.

The raid at the remote site – which staged the 2014 Ryder Cup – was highly-planned and lasted for less than three minutes.

Armed with the weapons, Fleming and Richardson – acting with another individual – ran into the hotel and smashed up the display cabinets at the Mappin & Webb boutique within the complex.

A painstaking investigation into the raid was launched by detectives, which ultimately involved more than 200 officers around the UK.

Police work included scrutinising hours of CCTV footage and identifying the two vehicles used in the raid.

A couple of housebreakings earlier in the month in St Andrews, Fife, also led police towards identifying the suspects, who were arrested in London a few weeks after the Gleneagles attack.

The High Court jury returned majority guilty verdicts against Fleming on a charge of armed robbery and two of assault after two and half hours of deliberations.

Fleming earlier admitted breaking into houses in St Andrews on June 12, 2017, around two weeks before the Gleneagles raid.

Richardson earlier pleaded guilty to the armed robbery charge.

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