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Four men embroiled in a plot to blackmail a businessman, which culminated in the man's car being torched, have been sentenced.

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The gang were involved in a two-month conspiracy to blackmail the victim over a debt his business partner owed to Tommy Roye (born 18/10/74), of Flixton Road, Urmston.

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Following a trial, Roye was convicted of blackmail, conspiracy to commit arson and threatening to destroy property.

Ashley Guishard (born 31/10/1974), of Totnes Road, Ashton-on-Mersey, was convicted of blackmail following a trial.

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Marcel Lauder (born 16/9/69), of Morningside Close, Derby pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit arson and blackmail at an earlier hearing.

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Jamie Keegan (born 28/10/82), of Epsom Avenue, Sale, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit arson and blackmail at an earlier hearing.

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Today, 13 February 2014, Roye was sentenced to six years, Guishard to three years and a further four years for an unrelated possession of Class A drugs with intent to supply charge, making seven in total, Lauder to 28 months (which includes four months for production of Class B drugs) and Keegan to 24 months at Manchester Crown Court, Crown Square.

The victim was involved in the running of a Cheshire nightclub with his business partner, who owed up to £30,000 to various people, one of whom was Roye. These two men had a tense altercation in a Stretford pub on 13 August 2012, which resulted in the man in debt calling the victim and asking for help.

Concerned, the victim drove to the pub and spoke to his partner, who said he feared for his life. In desperation, the victim told Roye he would pay £5,000 towards settling the debt in order to buy his business partner time to raise the money himself. The victim was assured by his partner that he himself would not need to pay Roye any money.

However, just before 11pm on 1 October 2012, as the victim and a friend left the Lord Nelson pub in Urmston, they were ambushed on a quiet residential street by Roye and Guishard. Roye demanded to know where his money was and made threats saying: “You know who we are; you know what we can do. I’ll put you in that skip over there.” Fearing for his life, he gave Roye the keys to his Audi in the hope it would placate him. Roye told the victim that if he went to the police his car would be torched.

The following morning, the victim sent a text message to Roye asking for his car back and promising to pay the £5,000 by the 11 October, to which Roye agreed. The car was eventually returned and the victim’s business partner gave further assurances that he would pay the debt.

Despite this, on the 10 October, Roye again bombarded the victim with texts demanding payment. Roye sent the victim a threatening text which revealed he knew the man’s home address. When the victim replied saying that he had no option but to contact the police, Roye’s menacing response was: “POLICE, CALL THE FIRE SERVICE ASWEL (sic)”, a clear and direct threat to damage the victim’s property in an arson attack.

Roye recruited Keegan and Lauder to help him in his plan. It was Lauder and Keegan who went to the victim’s home at about 8pm on 12 October 2012 and torched the victim’s people carrier while it was parked on his driveway.

Roye and Guishard were arrested the next day, and during a search of Roye’s home, officers seized two ornamental Samurai swords and a machete.

Detective Sergeant Patrick Goodrich said: “This case involved a totally innocent and legitimate businessman who unwittingly became embroiled in a blackmail plot driven by a gang of violent criminals.

“All he wanted to do was help out a colleague who had got himself into debt, and for his troubles endured two months of hell at the hands of an extremely intimidating and aggressive band of criminals.

“That they went so far as to torch this man’s car as it was parked on his driveway, bearing in mind this man has a wife and daughter, shows how dangerous these men were and you can only imagine the anguish this man suffered for those two months, being bombarded with violent threats simply for trying to help a colleague.

“I have no doubt whatsoever that the streets are a lot safer now that these four men are behind bars. I would also like to praise the tenacity of the victim himself who hung in there despite the hell he was subjected to and helped us to convict these men.

“Organised crime groups like these cause real misery and hardship for law-abiding and innocent members of our communities. However, in Trafford we have been targeting organised crime groups at all levels for the last two years and have achieved some fantastic results by working in collaboration with a host of partner agencies.

“We are tackling these groups with every tactic open to us, taking away their liberty, their homes, their cars and their cash. We will continue to target these organised crime groups and people in Trafford can help us by reporting any criminal activity they see in their neighbourhood.”

Anyone who has been a victim of crime can contact police on 0161 856 7655 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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Trev Sherwood is the founder & blogger at the UK’s Leading Crime & Policing News. Delivering you breaking news, insightful analysis, legislation & positive news!

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Two arrested on suspicion of under following death of three children

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A 14, 8 & 7-year-old has been killed in a devastating house fire which is being treated as murder.

Cops are treating the deaths as ‘Murder’ by fire and have now arrested a 23-year-old man and a 20-year-old woman.

A three-year-old girl is also fighting for her life in hospital and her mother is in a serious condition.

Police have launched a murder inquiry after three children died in a suspected arson attack on a house in Salford.

Emergency services responded to reports of a fire at 4.58am on Jackson Street, Worsley in Greater Manchester.

Sadly Demi Pearson aged 14 was declared dead at the scene following the horrific arson attack which ripped through the house.

Another boy aged eight-year-old and a girl aged seven-year-old have also sadly died in hospital.

Michelle Pearson aged 35 the mother of all four children is also in a serious condition and is fighting for her life.

Greater Manchester Police said a manhunt was underway for a suspect and the force was “keeping an open mind” as to whether the incident was gang-related.

Chief Superintendent Wayne Miller said: “The death of these three children is heartbreaking. Our thoughts are with their loved ones and the little girl and her mum who are in hospital fighting for their lives.

“We currently have specially-trained officers with the family to help them through this devastating time.”

He called on the suspect to “give himself up”, adding that “he knows who he is”.

“This is a fast-moving live investigation and we have a major investigation team with scores of dedicated detectives working tirelessly,” he continued.

“I want to describe what this incident is; it’s the murder, using fire, of three children and we have a three-year-old girl fighting for her life who is seriously ill.

“This will devastate this family forever and words cannot describe what they are going through. We need the public’s help to find the answers the family deserve.

“We want to make arrests as soon as possible and we appeal to local people to help us in this.”

Two 16-year-old boys managed to get out of the house before fire crews could arrive. they are believed to be safe and well.

Greater Manchester Police have now referred the incident to the Independent Police Complaints Commission because they had been called to the address due to an “earlier incident at the address” hours before.

Jackson Street has been closed off with large steel barriers and firefighters are still monitoring hot spots within the property,

Our thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by this devastating fire.

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Man hunt launched as three children killed House Fire

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A 14, 8 & 7-year-old has been killed in a devastating house fire which is being treated as murder.

Cops are treating the deaths as ‘Murder’ by fire and know who the suspected killer is and urge him to hand himself in before he is named.

A three-year-old girl is also fighting for her life in hospital and her mother is in a serious condition.

Police have launched a murder inquiry after three children died in a suspected arson attack on a house in Salford.

Emergency services responded to reports of a fire at 4.58am on Jackson Street, Worsley in Greater Manchester.

Sadly Demi Pearson aged 14 was declared dead at the scene following the horrific arson attack which ripped through the house.

Another boy aged eight-year-old and a girl aged seven-year-old have also sadly died in hospital.

Michelle Pearson aged 35 the mother of all four children is also in a serious condition and is fighting for her life.

Greater Manchester Police said a manhunt was underway for a suspect and the force was “keeping an open mind” as to whether the incident was gang-related.

Chief Superintendent Wayne Miller said: “The death of these three children is heartbreaking. Our thoughts are with their loved ones and the little girl and her mum who are in hospital fighting for their lives.

“We currently have specially-trained officers with the family to help them through this devastating time.”

He called on the suspect to “give himself up”, adding that “he knows who he is”.

“This is a fast-moving live investigation and we have a major investigation team with scores of dedicated detectives working tirelessly,” he continued.

“I want to describe what this incident is; it’s the murder, using fire, of three children and we have a three-year-old girl fighting for her life who is seriously ill.

“This will devastate this family forever and words cannot describe what they are going through. We need the public’s help to find the answers the family deserve.

“We want to make arrests as soon as possible and we appeal to local people to help us in this.”

Two 16-year-old boys managed to get out of the house before fire crews could arrive. they are believed to be safe and well.

Greater Manchester Police have now referred the incident to the Independent Police Complaints Commission because they had been called to the address due to an “earlier incident at the address” hours before.

Jackson Street has been closed off with large steel barriers and firefighters are still monitoring hot spots within the property,

Our thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by this devastating fire.

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Police are content Corrie McKeague is not in the landfill areas which have now been searched.

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Corrie Mckeague has been missing since September

olice have completed the search of a second area at the Milton landfill site as part of their inquiry to find Corrie McKeague.

The search of an extended area of Cell 22 began on October 23, 2017.

Although the data available indicated this was the next most likely area where Corrie might be found following the original 20-week search of the cell earlier this year, there was no trace of him.

Police are content Corrie is not in the landfill areas which have now been searched.

The inquiry team has identified all the other possible locations where waste has been deposited from the area in Bury St Edmunds known as the ‘horseshoe’ and there are no further realistic search opportunities at this time.

As previously stated, the nature of waste disposal and its movement is not an exact science.

The primary hypothesis – that Corrie ended up in the waste disposal process – was endorsed by a review of the investigation undertaken by the East Midlands Special Operations Unit (EMSOU).

The EMSOU officers who conducted the review were given access to all of the information they needed to conduct a thorough review, including all of the witness statements.

Following the conclusion of the landfill search site today the investigation into Corrie’s disappearance on September 24, 2016, will continue.

He was last seen on CCTV entering a loading bay in the ‘horseshoe’ following a night out.

CCTV in Bury St Edmunds town centre has already been viewed up to 4pm on 24th September 2016 and Corrie has not been seen to leave.

However, we will continue to scrutinise the other theories in order to try to establish and understand what may have happened to Corrie.

Detective Superintendent Katie Elliott said: “We are still committed to continuing with the inquiry. There are a number of other theories about what could have happened to Corrie and we are continuing to test the evidence to help us understand what happened to Corrie, which will assist in providing answers to his family.

“We feel it is important to explain to the family what we are doing, so they have the opportunity to understand and question what we have done, and why we have done it.

“We are acutely aware of the immense strain the last 15 months has placed upon Corrie’s loved ones. We want them to be confident we are doing everything that it is practical for us to do as we strive to find Corrie.”

Suffolk Constabulary would like to thank FCC Environment, owner of the Milton landfill site, for its support and co-operation during the inquiry.

The total amount searched in this second phase of the search was 2,867.5 tonnes.

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