max temp: 12°C

min temp: 3°C


Ipswich/Hollesley: Prisoner suspected of having £5,000 from robbery while on day release at Ipswich Town Football Club could not be prosecuted

11:39 21 February 2013

Kenneth Gillespie

Kenneth Gillespie


AN armed robber suspected of committing a raid while on day release from a Suffolk jail could not be charged despite being found with £5,500 on him, a court has heard.


Ipswich magistrates were told that despite Kenneth Gillespie being in possession of the money which was believed to come from a cash snatch at a fast food restaurant there was not enough evidence to prosecute him.

At the time Gillespie had been working at Ipswich Town Football Club, where some of the money was recovered.

The cash was believed to be part of around £17,000 that was snatched from a G4S security guard as she was pushed to the ground at McDonalds in Ranelagh Road, Ipswich, on November 7, 2011.

Gillespie – who was serving a life sentence for robbery at the time - was one of three prisoners working at the football club who were arrested following the cash snatch.

During a civil hearing magistrates were told that although some of the £5,500 was found on Gillespie, and the remainder discovered in a paint shed at Portman Road to which the 59-year-old had a key, he was never charged.

Prosecutor Karly McGuire said the case had not met the burden of proof the Crown Prosecution Service required.

Mrs McGuire said Gillespie is currently on the run after absconding from another prison. Therefore, he could not be served with papers to contest Suffolk Constabulary’s application to return the £5,513 to G4S.

The court heard Gillespie had been jailed for robbery in 1999.

After the McDonald’s cash snatch police located Gillespie and discovered he had the £5,500 in his possession. He declined to say where the money had come from.

Giving evidence Andrew Morrison, a Suffolk Constabulary financial investigator, said: “Mr Gillespie was identified as being a possible suspect, and the key being found in his possession that would open the paint store would lend itself (to believe) that the money was involved in that robbery.”

The magistrates found that on the balance of probabilities the money belonged to G4S and ordered its return.

After the hearing Lincolnshire Police confirmed Gillespie absconded from North Sea Camp open prison in Boston on January 23, when he did not return from day release.

Katherine Pinato, a spokeswoman for the Crown Prosecution Service said: “The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) can confirm it has made the decision not to charge in this case due to the lack of essential forensic evidence.

“This means that without that evidence, it would be difficult to prove a link between the defendant and the alleged offence.

“Additionally, the defendant could not be identified by independent witnesses.

“Two CPS lawyers have reviewed the case and applied the Code for Crown Prosecutors which states we can only proceed if we have the evidence available to support any case going forward.

“As we didn’t have the required evidence, we were left with no other option but to take this course of action. This was agreed in liaison with the police and all parties have been informed of the decision.

“If any new evidence comes to light the case can be reviewed in line with CPS policy.”



  • "A convicted armed robber out of prison on day realease!" That one sentance sums up the how our prison system is today. If there aren't enough prisons to lock up people like this, then build more, in turn creating work in construction and the prison service. Helps with the unemloyment figures as well as keeping scum like this off the streets.

    Report this comment


    Thursday, February 21, 2013

  • Why he was in an open prison after the robbery is beyond me. Surely after the robbery he should have been placed in a Cat C jail in the very least, Cat D is for those that deserve it.

    Report this comment

    a friend

    Thursday, February 21, 2013

  • Excellent, here we go again, another thug who is given pity by the System. Beggars belief that we have equally bad Morons protecting us. Pathetic Lawyers pathetic Barristers Pathetic Judges Pathetic Crown Prosecution Service.

    Report this comment

    terence wright

    Thursday, February 21, 2013

  • what an incredibly rediculous story...just unbelievable...words fail me.

    Report this comment

    Chris Ward

    Thursday, February 21, 2013

  • Surely you only give trustworthy people keys? I wouldn`t put an armed robber on day release in that category. In fact, I wouldn`t have him in the borough never mind the football club. Where IS the commonsense these days?

    Report this comment


    Friday, February 22, 2013

  • And the moral of this story is, crime does pay.

    Report this comment


    Thursday, February 21, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Kieron Dyer on I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here! 2015. Photo:  ITV/PA Wire

It was a rather uneventful night for former Ipswich Town player Kieron Dyer in the I’m A Celebrity... jungle last night

The Buttermarket Centre will become a £35m pleasure palace

Excitement is building as Ipswich prepares to welcome a string of big-name restaurants as part of the Buttermarket makeover.

It's been a busy day in Ipswich

All the news from a busy day in Ipswich in video form, including the closure of Marks and Spencer, station revamp and sport.

Felixstowe Beach Station not long before demolition in 2004.

Investigations are under way following clearance work at the former site of a historic railway station.

How well do you know your cars?

Test your knowledge in our car photo quiz and see if you can identify which car is which from just one small feature.

Company director spared jail

A Suffolk company director who crushed a worker to death was spared jail by a judge at Norwich Crown Court today.

The fire service cordons off an area near Marks and Spencer in Westgate Street where UK Power Networks works to find a  carbon monoxide leak

Marks & Spencer in Ipswich town centre was closed for most of the day after a carbon monoxide leak was detected.

Stores in Ipswich ready for Black Friday.

Black Friday is nearly upon us and it is set to kick off the busiest Christmas online shopping periods.

Two cars have been involved in a crash in Ipswich.

Foundation Street, Ipswich, around a century ago. Little remains of the ancient buildings in this street. This photograph was taken from near the junction of Lower Brook Street.

Foundation Street is one of the oldest streets in Ipswich, connecting the port with the town centre. Buildings which had stood for centuries were demolished in the early 1960s in what was then seen as “improvements”.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Suffolk's trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the Ipswich Star e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24