Six armed bandits with sub-machine guns burst into the Victorian Club in Melbourne yesterday and escaped with almost $1.4 million in Australia's biggest armed robbery to date. As bookmakers were about to settle bets from the Easter race meetings with cash proceeds delivered by Mayne Nickless security guards at about midday on Wednesday, the six hooded gunmen burst in and pointed their guns at the bookmakers and patrons of the club.
One Mayne Nickless guard attempted to draw his revolver, but a gunman cracked him over the head with a sub-machine gun and threatened to kill him after he fell on the floor. Three waitresses were grabbed by the gunman who pointed a gun at one woman's head and threatened to kill her if anyone tried to escape. The 40 members of the club present at the time were herded into the billiards area and ordered to lie face down whilst some of the bandits used boltcutters to open the
metal boxes containing the cash, which some bookmakers claim could be as much as $3 million. The official figure is $1,375,000.
|'There's a possibility the robbery was an inside job...'|
Police are investigating the possibility that the robbery was an inside job, as evidence shows that the men were in the club on the night before the robbery and had cut a peephole through a wall to watch the proceedings of settling day.
The men were all wearing brightly coloured balaclavas, overall;s and dustcoats.They empties the security boxes filled with cash into three mailbags and escaped through the side door.