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Three jailed for raid on jewellery shop

THREE robbers whose armed raid of a high-end jewellery store was foiled by the brave actions of the owner and passers-by have been given sentences of between seven and nine years.

Clive Kavanagh of Portland Row, Dublin 1; his nephew Glen Kavanagh of Dunne Street Flats, Dublin 1; and Michael Martin, of Upper Oriel Street, Dublin 1, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to robbery and possession of a firearm at Dawson Jewellers, Dawson Street, Dublin on November 6, 2009.

In the raid, Clive Kavanagh (42) was supposed to hold open the security door of the Dublin city centre jewellery store for his two accomplices but he let it close behind him leaving the pair to wait until another customer came in.

A staff member saw two men enter the shop shortly after with scarves over their faces. She ran to the back of the store and rang the alarm.

Another staff member realised there was going to be a robbery and ran out to the street where she alerted passers-by who rang gardai.

Martin (26) had produced a loaded sawn-off shotgun but fled after he was confronted by the store owner, Ken McDonagh, who wrestled the weapon from him as Clive Kavanagh cowered behind a female customer using her as "a human shield".

Passers-by

Passers-by held Martin on the street outside and alerted the gardai.

Inside, the third robber, Glen Kavanagh (35), was loading a hold-all bag with Rolex and Cartier watches valued at almost €100,000 before Mr McDonagh, who feared he would be attacked, struck him on the head with the butt end of the gun knocking him to the ground.

Gardai arrived and arrested all three men.

Judge Tony Hunt commended the bravery of those who had intervened. He said this appeared to be a robbery which had been planned to a significant degree with multiple participants playing different roles and was aggravated by the fact a loaded weapon was involved.

He imposed a seven-year sentence on Clive Kavanagh and suspended the final three years taking into account he had played the lessor role and his ill health.

Judge Hunt imposed an eight-year sentence on Glen Kavanagh and suspended the final two years. He imposed a nine-year sentence on Martin and also suspended the final two years. He noted the pair had been taking steps to rehabilitate themselves in custody.

Clive Kavanagh has 68 previous convictions while Glen Kavanagh has 36 and Martin has seven.

Clive Kavanagh had begun abusing drugs and alcohol on a relapse in 2002, developed a serious illness and had a liver transplant in May 2008. His defence lawyer said the prognosis for patients in his position would be in the region of 10 or 11 years.

hnews@herald.ie