‘Chicken-in-a-bun guy’ sees jail term slashed
AN ARMED robber who was caught after raiding his regular takeaway - where he was so familiar to staff he had earned the nickname ‘chicken-in-a-bun guy’ - has had his jail sentence slashed.
Joe Atilla Hodosi, of Regent Street in Weston, brandished a loaded sawn-off shotgun during the early-hours raid on Miss Millie’s fried chicken shop in Locking Road last April.
Frightened workers handed over about �100 and Hodosi left, but he was soon behind bars because he was recognised by the takeaway’s manager as a regular customer.
When the case went to Bristol Crown Court in September the 25-year-old pleaded guilty to robbery, possessing a firearm, and damaging his police cell.
However, he claimed he could not remember what happened because he was so out of it on Valium and alcohol, and said he had no motive to commit the crime.
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Sentencing him, the crown court judge said the fact Hodosi could carry out such a serious offence without realising was ‘chilling’.
The judge ruled he was such a danger he would have to be locked up indefinitely, saying he must remain behind bars until he was considered safe for release.
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A minimum term behind bars was set at six years.
However, Hodosi was this week granted an earlier shot at parole, after three senior judges at the Court of Appeal in London slashed his minimum term to four-and-a-half years.
Hodosi’s lawyers had argued the open-ended sentence was wrong in principle, describing the minimum period he has to serve before applying for release as ‘manifestly excessive’.
The Court of Appeal judges agreed in part with those submissions.
Although the judges – Mr Justice Supperstone, Lord Justice Gross and Mr Justice Coulson – rejected the challenge to the open-ended nature of the sentence, they allowed the appeal against its minimum term.
Mr Justice Supperstone said: “We bear well in mind that this must have been a very frightening experience for those faced by the appellant with a loaded sawn-off shotgun.
“However, this was not a sophisticated robbery. The appellant was a regular customer and he was recognised by the manager.”
The decision means Hodosi will serve four-and-a-half years, but will only be released after that if the parole board considers he is no longer a serious risk to the public.