/ Armed thieves stole cigarettes from a shop in Astley

Armed thieves fled with a sack full of cigarettes following a robbery in Astley.

Shortly before 9.50pm on Sunday 26 November 2017, police were called to reports of an armed robbery at the Co-op on The Gables Shopping Centre.

A trio armed with a handgun, a crowbar and a machete approached the cigarette counter and filled a sack with cigarettes.

The employees remained in the back of the store and no-one was injured.

One offender was described as slim build, wearing a black ski mask with a grey waist length waterproof hooded coat and dark tracksuit bottoms.

He also wore black trainers and black gloves whilst carrying a large silver machete with a black handle.

The second offender was described as slim build, wearing a blue hooded waterproof coat, black trousers and grey and black Nike trainers.

He also wore black gloves and carried a crowbar.

The third offender was described as tall, of slim build, wearing a black ski mask with three holes, a black waist length hooded top and black trousers with grey and black trainers.

He also wore black gloves and carried a handgun.

Detective Constable Andrew Partington, of GMP’s Wigan borough, said: “The fact that these men were all armed with dangerous weapons shows that they were prepared to harm anyone that got in their way.

“Thankfully the employees were able to get to the back of the store where they remained unharmed and were able to raise an alarm.

“I am appealing to anyone who was in the area at the time that may have seen anything suspicious, or seen men matching the descriptions, to please get in touch.”

Anyone with any information is asked to call police on 101, quoting reference number 2098 of 26/11/17, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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