Diamond ring robber wrestled by ex-policeman in Oxford auctioneers

The robbery happened at Mallams in St Michael's Street, Oxford Picture: Oxford Mail <i>(Image: Oxford Mail)</i>
The robbery happened at Mallams in St Michael's Street, Oxford Picture: Oxford Mail (Image: Oxford Mail)

A diamond ring obsessive targeted auctioneers in two different counties in his hunt for the big-ticket jewellery item.

Adil Khan, 30, armed himself with a hammer before going into Oxford city centre auctioneers Mallams in April and asked to look at their rings.

He pulled out the weapon in his bid to get away with a £50,000 ring but was wrestled by security guard and former police officer Andrew Bellman.

Appearing before Oxford Crown Court on Friday (June 2) via video link from HMP Hewell, Khan, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to robbery, possession of an offensive weapon, causing actual bodily harm and criminal damage.

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Judge Ian Pringle KC remanded him in custody and ordered a pre-sentence report to look at whether Khan should receive an extended sente3nce as a ‘dangerous’ offender.

Prosecuting, Matthew Knight told the court that the defendant had committed ‘serious offences’.

The first, to which he pleaded guilty at Gloucester Crown Court last month, saw him go into an auctioneers in Moreton in Marsh on April 20, take two diamond rings worth between £50,000 and £70,000 then brandish a chair at staff to make good his escape.

Just five days later, on April 25, his modus operandi had changed little. Mr Knight said: “He goes into the auction house and asks to view expensive diamond rings.”

He produced a hammer and threatened members of staff at Mallams with it. “Fortunately, due to the efforts of Mr Bellman, the security officer and ex-police officer, he is detained at the scene.”

The ring he had his eye on at the auction house in St Michael’s Street, Oxford, was worth an estimated £50,000, the court was told.

Khan had no previous convictions for robbery on his rap sheet, but was convicted in 2020 of causing actual bodily harm and drugs supply. The latter offence might give away the reason for his latest robbery spree, the prosecutor suggested.

Adjourning for the preparation of pre-sentence reports by the probation service, Judge Pringle said: “I’m concerned about dangerousness. He’s 30 years of age and these are planned, serious offences.”

If a judge on the next occasion finds him to be a significant risk of causing serious harm to others and rules him to be a dangerous offender, Khan faces an extended period on licence and being supervised by an experienced probation officer.

Receiving an extended sentence means he would have to serve two-thirds of his jail sentence behind bars before he could be released on parole.

He will be sentenced on June 30.