Brothers rob jewellers in latex masks disguised as old men | UK | News

Two brothers robbed a jewellery store disguised as elderly people with “extremely life-like latex masks”.

The pair threatened terrified staff with a hatchet and a knife before fleeing the scene. However, the pair were later found with the masks during a stop-and-search by police.

Just before 11.30am on Monday, September 27, 2021, George Murphy-Bristow, 28, and Benjamin Murphy, 37, raided the high street jewellers in Epping, Essex, while armed with the weapons. 

They arrived at the jewellery store wearing extremely life-like, full-face latex masks, giving them the appearance of elderly gentlemen. They gained access to the store after threatening staff to let them in.

Once inside, they ushered a staff member to the office where they tied them to a chair with cable ties before removing a valuable Rolex watch from their wrist. The duo, brandishing a knife and a hatchet axe, searched the staff area before the alarm was raised and the men fled the scene in a vehicle that was parked outside. The Rolex watch, valued at £15,000, has never been recovered.

Several weeks later, officers from Essex Police’s Op Falcon team on patrol in Canvey Island stopped a vehicle, reports Essex Live. The driver of this car was George Murphy-Bristow and in the boot were two full-face masks and clothing of identical appearance as those worn by the suspects in the robbery. Also found was a black duffel bag containing a hatchet, knife and cable ties.

Murphy-Bristow was arrested at the scene. A forensic examination took place of saliva found inside the two masks, which identified DNA belonging to Murphy-Bristow and his older brother Benjamin Murphy, linking them to the robbery. The brothers were arrested at separate locations on 21 June last year and refused to answer any questions during their respective interviews.

Both men were

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Inheritance tax: Six tips to help you avoid a hefty 40 percent tax bill | Personal Finance | Finance

To reduce or avoid inheritance tax, individuals will need to take action to ensure their affairs are in order. It can be difficult to know where to begin, and so Express Money has highlighted six key tips and tricks to help.

Gifts

Gifting can perhaps be one of the best ways for Britons to avoid being hit with a hefty tax bill on their death.

The action helps to reduce the value of a person’s estate for inheritance tax purposes, and gifts can vary.

Gifts include:

  • Money
  • Household and personal goods, for example, jewellery or furniture
  • A house, land or buildings
  • Stocks and shares on the London Stock Exchange
  • Unlisted shares held for less than two years before the person’s death.

If a person survives for seven years from making the gift, it will fall outside of an estate and there is no inheritance tax liable.

Dying within seven years of the gift being made means a proportion of the gift, or indeed all of it, will be subject to inheritance tax – on a taper scale. This is commonly referred to as the seven year rule. 

READ MORE: State pension age hikes not ‘felt evenly’

Allowances

Inheritance tax does make room for some allowances to help people reduce their inheritance tax liability.

For example, people will not pay IHT on the first £325,000 of their estate, known as the nil-rate band.

If a person gives away their home to their children or grandchildren, their threshold can increase to £500,000.

There is normally no inheritance tax to pay if either:

  • The value of the estate is below the £325,000 threshold
  • Everything above the £325,000 threshold is left to a spouse, civil partner, a charity, or community amateur sports club.

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