A BOLTON robber has been jailed for eight years after being convicted of another violent jewellery shop raid.

Criminal Daniel Burtak had been jailed in 2007 for his role in the armed smash-and-grab robbery of a Bolton jewellery store, and locked up again in 2016 for helping to burgle a food wholesaler in Penrith.

On June 6 this year, he was masked and entered a jewellery shop in Carlisle at 2.20pm and vaulted over a counter.

He punched store owner Craig Carruthers in the face, flooring him by what Mr Carruthers described as "intense" force which "felt like a knuckleduster".

He suffered a broken nose, but dazed and bleeding, he bravely tried to thwart Burtak as he grabbed £25,000 worth of loot.

Mr Carruthers' shop had been robbed earlier in 2019 and faced with Burtak, he shepherded one female employee out of the firing line, saying: "I will sort this."

He said "He came towards me and I kicked out. He kicked me back and I looked at his hands. I looked at his hands to see if he had a weapon due to previous. I just saw gloves and then I was hit."

When he saw Burtak grabbing at jewellery from a window display, Mr Carruthers lashed out at him with a set of small stepladders which were nearby. "I thought 'he is not getting any more of my stock'," he told the jury.

Burtak left the store after a masked accomplice entered and beckoned him away while armed with a small fire extinguisher which one employee feared may contain acid.

Both robbers fled in a getaway Ford Fiesta previously stolen earlier by Burtak and driven 100 miles from Lancashire to Cumbria in convoy with an Audi A3, driven by a pal.

Those vehicles - fitted with false numberplates - were captured driving around the city centre minutes before the shocking crime in what Carlisle Crown Court heard was a "reconnaissance" mission.

"This was clearly a professionally planned commercial robbery," prosecutor Antony Longworth said.

Burtak and his friend were arrested while travelling south in the Audi on the M6 later that afternoon. Burtak, of no fixed abode, was convicted, unanimously, of robbery following a jury trial.

Ashley Entwistle, 36, of Athlone Avenue, Bolton, who had travelled to Carlisle in the Audi, was acquitted of the robbery charge he jointly faced and had denied.

Most of the jewellery haul was recovered, but the effect on Mr Carruthers and his staff was immense, two employees having since left the store. "Both have told me that they cannot continue to work here due to the robberies," he said in a statement. "They do not feel safe at work and kept having nightmares about what happened."

Andrew Scott, defending, said father-of-two Burtak's partner had recently given birth to a baby he hadn't yet seen. "He will soon be 33. He has got a terrible record. It is 20 years of offending. It has been extensive," said Mr Scott.

"Hopefully this particular sentence and the present situation that he finds himself in will help him in changing his ways."

Sentencing Burtak for the Carlisle crime, Judge Julie Clemitson concluded it was he who attacked Mr Carruthers and stole his stock. "The robbery, I am sure, must have been terrifying for those involved," said the judge. "The impact that the offence has had on all of the people involved that day has been significant."