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Second man pleads guilty to taking part in violent raid on Arsenal stars

PUBLISHED: 12:53 06 November 2019 | UPDATED: 13:52 09 November 2019

Arsenal's Sead Kolasinac. Picture: Mike Egerton

Arsenal's Sead Kolasinac. Picture: Mike Egerton

PA Wire/PA Images

A second man has said he took part in an armed attempt to rob Arsenal stars Sead Kolasinac and Mesut Ozil of their watches in a shocking moped ambush.

A second man has said he took part in an armed attempt to rob Arsenal stars Sead Kolasinac and Mesut Ozil of their watches in a shocking moped ambush.

Jordan Northover, 26, pleaded guilty to trying to steal the expensive items from the footballers in Platts Lane in Hampstead shortly before 5pm on July 25, Harrow Crown Court heard.

Ashley Smith, 30, has already admitted his role in the attempted raid against close friends Ozil, 31, and Kolasinac, 26.

CCTV footage spread widely on social media showed burly Bosnian defender Kolasinac chasing off the two moped attackers, who were wearing helmets and dark clothing.

The men had pulled up behind Mr Kolasinac and pulled out a sharp object from a rucksack an threatened him, while demanding his watch.

The club's £350,000-a-week German midfielder Ozil can be seen in his black Mercedes G class 4x4 before he reportedly took refuge in a Turkish restaurant in Golders Green.

According to the Met, the breakthrough came when a member of the public phoned police to report a suspicious motorbike in Borehamwood which didn't have its number plates. The Met then pinpointed that it was the bike used in the robbery.

Investigating officers then found CCTV from a local pub shortly after the incident, and showed Northover changing clothes.

The clothes worn by them, including a motorbike helmet, were found at the back of the pub.

World Cup winner Ozil and full-back Kolasinac were left out of the Arsenal side ahead of the Premier League campaign after the incident.

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Following the ordeal, Ozil told the Athletic sports site that he was scared for his wife Amine as the attackers pursued his car.

He said: "They told him directly 'Give us your watch!'.

"Sead's reaction was really, really brave because he attacked one of the attackers.

"We were newly wed and I was scared about my wife. I was scared about Sead.

"I saw one chance to drive. If they got to my wife, something terrible might have happened to her.

"I started driving but they followed. I was driving very fast but they kept coming close on the moped.

"I tried to move the car, block them, escape, but each time they would be there.

"My wife was extremely scared."

The duo, including Smith, of Archway, north London, will be sentenced at Harrow Crown Court on Friday, judge Rosa Dean said.

Ch Ins Jim Corbett of Operation Venice said: "Northover and Smith attempted this brazen robbery after travelling around streets nearby, looking for people to rob.

"Northover didn't hesitate to draw a weapon when making demands, but he didn't bargain on being challenged and the pair went away empty-handed. The victim and the people who were visiting him, while unharmed, were shaken by the incident.

"We identified these two suspects after a member of the public grew suspicious and called police, and this case demonstrates how important community information can be. I would like to thank everyone who came forward with information about this offence. These types of cases can be difficult to investigate as the perpetrators mask their identities by wearing crash helmets and scarves. It is vital that anyone who witnesses a robbery or sees anything suspicious contacts police to tell them what they know. The information could be vital."

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