Eight years gaol for servo robbery

SUNSHINE man, 36-year-old Saoloapu Umi and 24-year-old Sale woman Jody Lee Downe were sentenced to eight years imprisonment for the armed robbery of the United Petroleum service station on Sale-Maffra Rd last year.

The pair held up the servo between 3am and 4am Saturday, November 25, Umi supporting a double barrel shot gun which he jabbed at an attendant before pointing the gun at the man’s face while he demanded cash.

Downe carried a large combat-style hunting knife.

At the time of the robbery the duo wore scarves and hats in an attempt to obscure their features.

When the attendant opened the till the pair snatched an amount of cash fleeing north along the Princes Highway in a stolen car.

Downe was arrested in Sale the following day, while Umi was apprehended by detectives from a special operations group in Flemington, Tuesday, November 28.

Umi’s arrest came after detectives from Wellington Criminal Investigation Unit conducted a search at a Lakes Entrance property Monday, November 27, locating the shotgun and other items.

Umi was found guilty on the charges of armed robbery, unlawful assault, making threats to kill, for being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm, possession of ammunition without a licence, driving without a licence, using threatening words and using a drug of dependence.

Downe was found guilty on the charges of armed robbery, recklessly causing serious injury, making threats to kill, assault with a weapon, unlawful assault, attempted robbery, burglary and theft, and two counts of using a drug of dependence, relating to the United Petroleum hold up and other incidents.

The pair, who were sentenced at Bairnsdale Country Court, Wednesday, May 29, won’t be eligible for parole for a minimum of five years.