A gang of men who kidnapped and threatened to kill Stefanos Neophytou, who owns Libra Sauna Club, have been jailed for a total of 66 years.

The gang took Mr Neophytou to a house on 3 January, where he was stripped, beaten and threatened with acid and petrol, and demanded $400,000.

Mr Neophytou was freed after promising to find £50,000, then tipped off police who caught Mahmoud Abouakkour, 21and Tobias Uter, 32, at the supposed drop off point.

Michael Burrows QC, prosecuting, said while in prison the two defendants phoned the sauna demanding Mr Neophytou drop the charges, and arranged for Williams, 36, to go to the premises and fire a shotgun into the entrance.

Abouakkour, 21, Longbridge was found guilty of conspiracy to kidnap and black mail, attempted intimidation and was jailed for 20 years.

Uter, Newton, admitted conspiracy to kidnap and was also found guilty of two charges of intimidation. He was jailed for 18 years and six months.

Karl Williams, 36, no fixed address, was found guilty of attempted intimidation, possessing a firearm and was jailed for 13 years.

Daniel Roberts, 40, Gloucestershire, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to kidnap and blackmail, and was jailed for 9 years 10 months.

Laura Lamb, 22, Acocks Green, was found guilty of attempted intimidation and possessing a firearm with intent, was sentenced to 5 years in jail.

Daniel Wood, 23, Newtown, admitted money laundering and was handed a 6-month sentence.

Judge Roderick Henderson, sentencing, said the operation was carried out by “ruthless and determined people” and that “significant planning and professionalism was involved.”

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