Jewels boss ambushed in living room - Knifemen in masks hold Halifax family hostage

Drama: a police van at the rear of the jewellery shop in Queen's Road
Drama: a police van at the rear of the jewellery shop in Queen's Road

MASKED knifemen held a terrified family hostage in their living room until they handed over the keys to their jewellery store.

The gang broke into the house in Sandbeds Road, Halifax, in the early hours.

The owner of Fahad Jewellers, off Queen’s Road, had fallen asleep on the settee.

He said: “My wife and our sons had gone to bed. Someone put a blanket over me. I woke up and couldn’t breathe. Someone was pushing down on my mouth and nose.

“I thought it was a dream and started trying to shout.”

Then he felt a knife put to his face and a horrifying whisper in his ear: “If you stay quiet, we’re not going to hurt you. If you shout, we will kill you.”

When he sat up, the man saw five or six men standing around his living room.

“Most of them had knives and one had what looked like a gun,” he said.

The gang asked him to hand over cash and the keys to his jewellery shop. When he did not, two of them went upstairs and brought his eldest son downstairs.

“They sat him next to me and asked him for the keys. He said he didn’t know, he is a student and doesn’t know anything about the shop.”

Then the gang brought down the man’s other son and his wife.

All four family members sat on the settee with the gang continuing their threats and demands for the keys and money.

When they threatened to take one of the sons to the shop, his mum told the gang that the keys were upstairs in her handbag.

After ransacking her bag, all but two of the thieves left the house. After around 10 minutes, the two left received a call, the owner presumes to say that the shop had been raided.

The pair then took the family’s mobile phones, their landline phones and the keys to their cars.

They told the four “not to do anything silly” before fleeing.

One of the sons had hidden his mobile under his bed and as soon as the family heard the men drive off, they called 999.

The gang had emptied their shop, taking all the stock they had.

The owner said: “It still hasn’t sunk in. It was like watching something in a film or on television. It didn’t seem real, like it wasn’t happening to me.

“At least no one was hurt. My first reaction was how lucky we are that we are all safe.”

The jewellers was raided twice in 2003 but the family said they have never experienced anything as terrifying as what happened on Friday.

Police are urging anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area such as unusual people or vehicles, to get in touch.

Three of the suspects are described as white and one as asian. All were in their early 20s and of medium build. All were wearing masks and dark clothing. One was 5ft 6ins tall, the others were 6ft tall.

Anyone with information about he break-in, which happened at 5am on Friday, should call Calderdale CID on 01422 337085 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.