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Solari played the innocent victim but a jury decided she was part of the plot

A betting shop worker who “sobbed uncontrollably” during an armed robbery has been jailed after it was revealed she was in on the plot all along.

Natalie Solari, 30, denied her part in the theft of more than £11,000 from the Ramsgate bookmakers on 30 August 2018.

But she was found guilty after a trial and sentenced along with three others at Canterbury Crown Court.

Det Insp James Derham from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate said: “Their gamble did not pay off.”

Solari, of Maynard Avenue in Margate, was jailed for 12 years.

The betting shop assistant manager had been working behind the counter of the Newington Road business when two masked men burst in carrying imitation firearms.

CCTV captured her cowering behind the counter as Tyler McNeill, 26, of Queens Road in Aylesham, and Daniel O’Reilly, 39, of Beverley Gardens in Dymchurch, demanded cash.

She can be seen in the footage opening the safe and stuffing money into bags, before pressing the panic alarm.


Kent Police said she hid under the desk where she “sobbed uncontrollably”, according to witnesses.

But phone data later revealed McNeil had called Solari on the day of the robbery. She was also linked to O’Reilly.

The men fled in a black Renault Megane driven by 29-year-old Simon Bennett.

Bennett and McNeill’s DNA was found inside the the getaway vehicle when it was discovered several weeks later.

McNeill and O’Reilly pleaded guilty to charges of robbery and the possession of an imitation firearm.

They were jailed for eight-and-a-half and seven-and-a-half years respectively.

Bennett, of no fixed address, denied the robbery charge but was found guilty alongside Solari. He was sentenced to five years.

Det Insp James Derham from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate said the robbery would have “looked terrifying to innocent and unsuspecting members of the public”.

But he said “their gamble didn’t pay off”.

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