London hammer attacker said to use victim's bank card to steal $5,000

Accused also reportedly stole around $1,633 worth of goods during the attack at Cumberland Hotel

A burglar who assaulted three Emirati women with a hammer during an attack in a hotel room in London last week withdrew around $5,000 in cash using one of the victim’s bank cards, it was reported.

The three Emirati sisters were visiting London, along with three children aged between 7-12 years, when they were attacked by an assailant with a hammer. The incident took place in their room on the seventh floor of the Cumberland Hotel in Marble Arch in the early hours of April 6 when the victims interrupted a burglar who had gained access to their unlocked room.

Abu Dhabi-based newspaper The National reported the burglar also stole around $1,633 worth of goods from the victims’ hotel room during the assault.

A spokesperson for London’s New Scotland Yard said they could not confirm the details in the report as the case is still under investigation.

At the weekend, a man appeared in court on charges related to the attack and will face trial later this week.

Philip Spence, 32, was charged with three counts of attempted murder and one count of aggravated burglary.

Spence, of no fixed address, appeared in custody with Thomas Efremi, 56, of Upper Handa Walk, Islington, who was charged with handling stolen goods and fraud by false representation and James Moss, 33, of Hanley Road, north London, who was charged with handling stolen goods.

Carly Baker, 31, also of Hanley Road, was charged with handling stolen goods and will appear at the same court on Tuesday. A 34-year-old man, who was also arrested over the attack, has been bailed to return in May.

On Sunday it was confirmed the Court of First Instance in Hammersmith, London, in a summary trial, has ordered the detaining of the suspects in the case and referred them to trial before the criminal court next Thursday, April 17.

The WAM news agency also confirmed Abu Dhabi Police had sent a delegation to London to assist its British counterparts in the investigation into the attack and UAE officers were present during the summary trial.

“HH Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, has dispatched a team from Abu Dhabi Police, which provided psychological support to the victims, and ordered coordination with the British police on arresting the suspects and bringing them to justice as soon as possible," UAE Ambassador to the UK, Abdul Rehman Ghanem Al Mutaiwei, said in a statement published by WAM.

"As part of the attention the wise leadership gives to nationals both in the UAE and overseas, the embassy has promptly moved to action on orders from HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, to provide all it takes to the family and its members who are in the British capital, to help them and provide a safe residence for them in London until the investigation into the case is over," the statement added.

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Posted by: Doug

I certainly agree there needs to be a stiff sentence. Would all these posters here calling for the death penalty or for the criminals to be locked up and then throw away the key also agree for similar punishments in the UAE for the drink driver who killed Roy Nasr (1 month in jail) or the other drink driver who killed an expat and then tried to flee the country (3 months in jail, after an original 2 month sentence)?

Posted by: leedon

In any case, by any standards, the crime is horrific and the outcome of the victims is with them for the rest of their lives, the sentence should be dealt accordingly as in so many named cases, the sentencing never really fits the crime. I wish good health to the victims and pray for a end to these attacks, unfortunately, even as a uk citizen, I would not feel safe in parts of London, nor other parts of the world. I am happy to be law abiding and faithful to my family and worry, what world am i bringing my children up in ? all across the globe every country has its problems. I just hope none of these atrocities affect my family nor my family to commit them.

Posted by: WHJ

@James old boy, please don't get worked up. Even if we eleminate the possibility of premeditation, the fact remains that an attempted murder took place both wilfully and intentionally. In the biker's case, however, there was no wilful or intentional attempt to kill, hence the "massive gulf between people's opinions". I really don't think this point is so difficult to understand. Then again, maybe it is for some, especially those who seem to be an authority on sixth form debate tactics.

Posted by: James

@ WHJ.

1. You seem to be quoting US law. Inapplicable here.
2. You keep going on about premeditation - where is the evidence for this? Again, it's a strawman you've created to try to advance your argument - a sixth-form debating tactic. As facts of the case become clearer we may find out that it was, indeed, a premeditated attack, but the reporting of the case so far doesn't support that (yet).
3. No one is treating these cases the same, what is happening is that people are dismayed at the massive gulf between people's opinion, on these comment pages, on two tragic and savage cases.

Speaking for myself, I am merely challenging your consistent distorting of the known facts of the case.

Posted by: WHJ

@Doug. You want to talk about cases where people walked free? Let's see: O J Simpson (the first time), Casey Anthony (she killed her 2 year old daughter), Robert Blake, George Heron (UK, killed Nikki Allen in 1993)......

Posted by: Doug

@WHJ - actually, I take it back. There's definitely a consistency in sentencing here. Apparently if you commit premeditated murder of a child, you go to prison for a year...unless of course you don't confess, in which case you get to walk completely free!

So, are we all agreed then that premeditated murder should be punished with a one-year jail sentence then?

Posted by: MOSA

Such culprits do not even deserve life sentences, what difference that's going to make? They will be receiving free accomodation, free food, and recreational activities for LIFE in prison. They should be handed over a death sentence, that's what these monsters deserve for ruining other womens lives.

Posted by: Afroditi Papathanasis

Only in UAE ,people can laeve the doors unlocked.I THINK,IT'S THE ONLY SAFE COUNTRY IN THE WORLD.I wish the victims to,get well soon.

Posted by: Mike Gailer

Whoever carried out such a horrendous attack should be jailed for a FULL life term, not the usual pathetic UK sentences of say 25 years. Really someone prepared to carry out such a crime does not deserve to get ut of jail EVER. What staggers me is the ease with which SOME humans can kill or maim others without any conscience whatsoever.

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