Manager 'feared he would be stabbed'

A SUFFOLK Post Office manager accused of faking two raids at his premises told police that he had feared he was going to be stabbed during one of them, a court heard.

A SUFFOLK Post Office manager accused of faking two raids at his premises told police that he had feared he was going to be stabbed during one of them, a court heard.

In a statement to police Graham Westley, 40, described having a plastic bag put over his head and feeling something being held against his throat.

"I felt scared and thought I was going to be stabbed," he said.

And he claimed that sticky tape was put over his mouth and more tape was put round his neck at the base of the bag. "I didn't speak or struggle because I was very frightened," he said.

Westley also claimed his wrists had been taped together in front of his body before being taped to the bars of a toilet window.

Westley, who managed Hacheston Post Office near Woodbridge eventually managed to free himself and it was discovered that £14,000 had been taken from the safe.

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Westley, of Hall Farm Cottages, Great Glemham has denied stealing £14,053 from the post office between October 2002 and May 2003 and stealing £12,750 from the post office between February 2003 and October 2003.

He has also denied trying to pervert the course of justice on May 23, 2003 by allegedly lying to the police by claiming there had been a robbery at the post office and a further charge of trying to pervert the course of justice on October 16, 2003 by pretending there had been a burglary there.

It has been alleged that Westley was facing bankruptcy and had pocketed more than £26,000 after faking a robbery and a burglary at the premises.

Yesterday, in a statement read to the court, forensic scientist Denise Kelly said that a metal grill on a window which Westley claimed had been cut open by burglars had in fact been cut by bolt cutters found at Westley's home.

She said that marks on the grill matched irregularties on the bolt cutters and showed conclusively that the grill had been cut by Westley's bolt cutters.

She added that further tests showed that the metal grill had been cut from inside the post office and not from the outside.

The trial continues today .

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