An armed robber who stole money from an Indian takeaway in Northampton after he claimed to be working for the IRA has been given an eight-year jail sentence.
Charles Moran, aged 32, of Watkin Terrace, in the town centre, targeted the Zall takeaway in Bailiff Street as the owner was closing the premises shortly after midnight on July 31.
Northampton Crown Court heard that Moran knocked on the door and demanded the owner hand over £1,000 ‘to help the IRA’.
Rachel Law, prosecuting, said Moran had an imitation gun tucked into his trousers and threatened to kill the business owner and the other employee who was also in the premises.
The court heard that the business owner was then handed a mobile phone and was told to speak to ‘the commander’ who told him he must pay within five minutes or he would be killed.
Ms Law said: “One of the victims made a run for it out of the kitchen but Moran used the gun to hit the business owner on the head, causing a cut to his ear and bruising to his cheek.”
The business owner handed over the till to Moran and he took the £35 cash inside as well as a mobile phone and a set of keys.
While Moran was distracted, the restaurant owner then managed to escape and phone the police.
A victim impact statement read to the court stated the robbery had huge psychological affects on the victims who had both been left scared to go out alone at night.
The restaurant owner said he had been unable to return to his business for a number of months after the robbery and had sold it in November due to the impact on his financial situation.
The man said the attack had robbed him of his confidence and he felt he was no longer able to make plans for the future.
The other victim said he had also suffered financially due to an inability to work at the restaurant after the attack.
Moran pleaded guilty to robbery and possessing an imitation firearm half-way through his trial in February this year.
His co-defendant Samatha Camposano, of Hunsbarrow Road in Briar Hill, was found not guilty of both charges by the jury.
Recorder Edward Hess, sentencing, said Moran was responsible for a “very nasty, violent crime” that would have a profound affect on the victims for the rest of their lives.
He said; “When they saw that revolver they would not have known it wasn’t real. They would have been understandably terrified about what their fate would be.”
Moran was given an eight-year jail sentence for the armed robbery and two years, concurrently, for having the imitation firearm.
He also gave him a four-year extended licence period after judging he was a ‘dangerous offender’.
Moran, who was given a four-year sentence for aggravated robbery in 2011, is likely to serve two thirds of his eight-year sentence before being considered for parole.