Crime spree Sidmouth armed robber says 'sorry'

PROLIFIC armed robber Stephen Jackley has apologised for his many crimes as he begins a 13 year jail term. The 23-year-old from Sidmouth, who committed a string of armed raids across three counties, wrote a letter to a local newspaper from his Worcester p

PROLIFIC armed robber Stephen Jackley has apologised for his many crimes as he begins a 13 year jail term.

The 23-year-old from Sidmouth, who committed a string of armed raids across three counties, wrote a letter to a local newspaper from his Worcester prison cell.

During his terrifying campaign, Jackley, who claimed he was a 'modern-day Robin Hood', waged a private war against banks, building societies and betting shops.

The university student brandished guns, a seven-inch long combat knife, a hammer and a fake bomb in the premises he targeted and on one occasion stabbed a TNT driver after he challenged him.

In his letter, Jackley, of Manstone Avenue, calls his actions 'despicable' and expressed his 'deepest regret' to his victims.

He said: "I can only say that at the time of committing these offences, I had no idea of the impact on others and believed they were for the 'greater good'."

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Jackley claimed he was trying to build an organisation that would "alleviate world poverty" by robbing banks and corporations.

During his six-month crime wave, Jackley broke into a NSPCC office but he claims he meant to rob a bank which was in the same building.

His letter states: "Once I realised my mistake, I endeavoured to pay �25,000 to this charity and began writing increments ranging from �250 to �650."

In total, Jackley pleaded guilty to a total of 18 offences and was sentenced to 13 years by a judge at Worcester Crown Court last month.