A GANG of “shameless” robbers who targeted students has been jailed for a combined eight years.
The group of three men and a woman had been charged with offences including robbery, fraud, handling stolen goods and possession of a bladed article.
They pretended to befriend students — sometimes as they returned home from nights out — before stealing valuables.
Garfield Nelson (59), of Crossley Close in Maltby, was sentenced to two years for robbery.
Rebecca Kerrigan (32), of HMP Newhall, was jailed for four years and four months for handling stolen goods, fraud by false representation and robbery, and Lupin Ntungi (41), of Spotswood Mount in Sheffield, got two years for robbery.
All three admitted the offences on the day of their trials at Sheffield Crown Court, while Stephen Green (37), of HMP Doncaster, who had already admitted robbery, was sentenced to 32 months.
Det Con Yvonne Fairbrother said: “In two of the incidents, the victims were students who were on their way home after nights out in Sheffield city centre.
“On 22 September, a young man was approached by Kerrigan, who engaged him in conversation before guiding him to a cash machine and coercing him into withdrawing £60.
“Kerrigan then managed to take the money and the victim’s bank card, when he tried to take it back, Ntungi appeared, hitting the student with a walking stick before leaving the scene.
“Kerrigan later withdrew £800 from the account at several locations across the city, she was caught on CCTV with Ntungi by her side.”
In one incident, the gang assaulted a student on Cavendish Street and marched him to a cash machine.
Det Con Fairbrother said: “Whilst Kerrigan did the groundwork with the victim, two men, later identified as Nelson and Green, followed from a short distance away.
“Once the victim tried to get away, the two men assaulted him, punching him and stealing cash, a ring, a chain and bracelet. Fortunately, the young man wasn’t seriously injured, but unsurprisingly he has been left shaken by what happened.
“These four individuals shamelessly targeted young people and attempted to befriend them, before coercing them into handing over money.
“They are dangerous and they should not be on the streets, I am pleased that they have all received custodial sentences for their crimes.”