Man admits to being accomplice to attempted raids on north-east banks

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A man has admitted to being an accomplice in attempted ATM raids on north-east banks.

A Liverpool based gang targeted 11 branches in the area during 2013 by forcing entry to the machines using a crowbar and then attempting to cause an explosion.

And now Peter O’Brien has confessed to assisting raids at the Bank of Scotland on Constitution Street in Inverurie and the Clydesdale Bank on Ann Street in Stonehaven.

He was not present at the two incidents, which took place on October 28 that year, but provided the culprits with vital assistance including allowing them to use his property on Mansefield Road in Aberdeen and providing a vehicle.

The 34-year-old made the confession at Aberdeen High Court yesterday where he also faced charges of being involved in a string of other raids the same year at Dyce, Mintlaw, Ellon, Oldmeldrum and North Deeside Road.

His not guilty pleas were accepted by the crown.

He had been due to stand trial alongside three other men at Glasgow High Court in April last year but failed to appear.

Following the proceedings the three other men were sentenced to a total of 27 years imprisonment.

The court was told O’Brien had been threatened into taking part.
However advocate depute Keith Mahony said: “That is not disputed by the Crown.

“However the plea is tendered and accepted on the basis that the accused had opportunity to contact the police in advance of the crimes being carried out and failed to do so.”

The court also heard of his lengthy criminal past.

Mr Mahony said: “He has a total of 18 previous convictions dating from 2004 in both English and Scottish courts.

“These include convictions for possession of drugs, dishonesty and violence.”
Lord Matthews deferred sentence in order to obtain a criminal justice social work report.

O’Brien, whose address was given as St Luke’s Close in Merthyr Tydfil, was remanded in custody.

He will reappear for sentencing on August, 10.