Two Fulham Men Jailed for Part in Violent Watch Robbery

Stun gun used to steal £100,000 Rolex

John Stovell and Thomas Lenaghan. Picture: Met Police

February 6, 2023

Two men from the Fulham area have been jailed for their part in a violent robbery which took place in Chelsea.

24-year-old Thomas Lenaghan of Rylston Road was sentenced to six years and nine month’s imprisonment for his part in the robbery at Isleworth Crown Court on 24 January. 51-year-old John Stovell was jailed for 18 months having pled guilty to handling stolen goods and assisting an offender. They were jailed alongside a 20-year-old accomplice from Dagenham called Ronnie Fitzgerald.

A Rolex watch worth £100,000 was stolen after a group of men set upon some people who were visiting the country from America. A knife was produced and the victims were threatened with a stun gun.

The attack came just after midnight on 16 November 2021, as three people were crossing Pavilion Road when they were approached by a group dressed in black and wearing balaclavas.

Their arrests came after a joint investigation by the Met’s Flying Squad and Westminster Robbery Squad.

One of the victims, aged 31, was pushed to the floor and hit from behind by a stun gun. The robbers surrounded him and demanded he hand over his Rolex watch. The man’s father was threatened with a knife, which cut through his coat but did not cause injury, as he tried to stop the attack. Their friend was also threatened with a stun gun and forced to hand over her watch, worth around £200.

The masked gang then got into a waiting car which sped off.

Although the robbery had been caught on CCTV and mobile phone cameras, the perpetrators were not identifiable because of their masks and generic clothing.

The car they were using, a Jaguar F-PACE, was stolen and displaying false plates, meaning it also proved difficult to identify and track down.

Detectives from the Met’s Flying Squad analysed the footage and managed to see that the car had a small sticker on the bottom right corner of its windshield. They then worked through crime records to find out how many Jaguar F-PACEs had been reported stolen and remained unrecovered in recent months, leaving them with 30-40 possible vehicles. The team contacted each owner and ascertained if any of their cars had any identifying features. One told officers that their car had a parking permit for their child’s school – a description which matched the sticker seen on the car used in the robbery.

This was the breakthrough moment the team had been looking for as it allowed them to discover the car’s true ‘identity’. From there, they were able to work out where the car had been prior to and after the robbery and explore further CCTV evidence, leading to footage showing the robbers meeting without masks. The photos of their faces were circulated and this led to the identification of Lenaghan, Stovell and Fitzgerald.

The car was found in a carpark in North End Road, a forensic examination linked the men to the vehicle.

Detective Chief Superintendent Owain Richards, responsible for local policing in Kensington and Chelsea, said, “In recent months we have been focusing our resources in hot spot areas where we know watch robberies have increased.

“Our dedicated robbery team are tirelessly tracking down those responsible for these kind of crimes and we hope this case demonstrates that anyone committing these offences will be identified and brought to justice.”


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