‘Skull cracker’ who robbed Royston bank remanded in custody

Michael Wheatley will appear at Guildford Crown Court on May 29

Michael Wheatley will appear at Guildford Crown Court on May 29 - Credit: Archant

A man known as the ‘skull cracker’ has appeared in court today (Friday) charged with armed robbery while being on the run from prison.

Michael Wheatley, 55, was arrested in London along with a 53-year-old man on Wednesday after an armed robbery offence at Chelsea Building Society in Sunbury-on-Thames, Surrey.

Mr Wheatley, who got his ‘skull cracker’ nickname for pistol whipping his victims, absconded from the HMP Standford Hill open prison on the Isle of Sheppey, Kent, on Saturday, prompting a large manhunt by several police forces.

The 55-year-old was given 13 life sentences in 2002 for a series of bank robberies – including one in Royston.

Redhill Magistrates have remanded him in custody to appear at Guildford Crown Court on May 29.