Belfast Telegraph

Ex-police officer in dock over spree of robberies

An ex-policeman was allegedly part of a spree of robberies across two towns on the same night, the High Court has heard.

The ex-PSNI officer is accused of being the getaway driver in heists at two fast-food outlets and another failed raid on a shop.

Details emerged as his co-accused applied for bail on charges connected to the hold-ups in Coleraine and Ballymena.

William Mercer (22), of Cloughey Road, Portaferry, faces two counts of robbery and another of attempted robbery.

He is alleged to have gone into the Candy Bar in Ballymena masked and carrying a hammer on November 15, prosecutors said.

Nothing was stolen from those premises, but an hour later around £270 in cash was seized from the Harbour chip shop in Coleraine. Within minutes £900 was taken during a second raid on another fast-food restaurant in the town. On both occasions the masked robber brandished a hammer, the court heard.

Two hammers and around £600 in notes and coins were recovered from Mercer's house.

The case continues.

Belfast Telegraph

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