Repeat offender back in jail for robbing student just days after release

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A REPEAT offender who forced a student to take him to his home in the Capital to rob him of computers within days of his early release from prison was jailed for four years today.

Nicolas Wynne, 22, was freed in May 13 this year from a 32 month jail sentence for robbery and assault with intent to rob which was due to expire in September next year.

But on May 30 he and an accomplice mugged a terrified 21-year-old man before he robbed the student three days later. He told police he had been “caught red-handed”.

A judge told Wynne at the High Court in Edinburgh: “Clearly there is no alternative to a significant custodial sentence.”

Lord Kinclaven said he took into account his age, diagnosis of Asperger’s syndrome and expressions of shame.

But the judge added: “You have a large number of previous convictions, including convictions for assault and robbery.”

“You have accepted responsibility for three serious charges, two of assault and robbery and one of abduction and robbery, that represents an escalation in your offending,” he said.

The judge also ordered that Wynne should be kept under supervision for a further two years.

Wynne who had been housed in a hostel aimed at helping rehabilitate criminals in Broughton Place, later told police that he committed the latest robberies because he felt he had “little or no support and needed money”.

He earlier admitted assaulting and robbing Matthew Watson of pounds 18 and a bank card at the city’s Elm Row on May 30, when he appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh.

He also pled guilty to assaulting Alex MacDonald and robbing him of a phone at Calton Terrace on June 2 and abducting him and forcing him to take him to his home in the city’s Antigua Street where he snatched computers, a games machine, camera and jacket.

Wynne, who was first sentenced for robbery when he was aged 16, demanded the student’s phone and and became more aggressive, repeatedly slapping him on the face, when the victim said he did not have it with him.

After no wallet was found Wynne asked him where he lived before forcing him to take him to his address. The advocate depute said: “He constantly warned Mr MacDonald not to try anything or he would be beaten up.”

The victim was told to open the flat and once inside Wynne locked the door. He took the victim’s laptop and a netbook before taking other gear from a flatmate’s room. He ordered the victim to remain in his bedroom until he left.

After Wynne departed the police were contacted and went to the Broughton Place premises and found the robber hiding under a table in a basement kitchen. Property taken from the robbery of the student was found in his room. Defence solicitor advocate Carol Gowans said Wynne was ashamed of his actions and a background report showed he had insight into the fear and alarm he had caused.