Ram raiders hit local service stations

AN ATM was stolen in a brazen robbery from the Fast and Ezy store and Shell garage at Wandandian Monday morning.

It was the second time in less than a week a Shoalhaven petrol station has fallen victim to thieves. 

Just after 5am on Monday police said a white Toyota Hilux dual cab utility pulled into the driveway nearest the shop entrance of the 24-hour business.

Two men wearing balaclavas and dark clothing allegedly entered the shop, armed with chains and a sledgehammer, threatening the 27-year-old male console operator.

Chains were placed around the ATM and the offenders attempted to rip the machine out of the shop, but initially were unsuccessful.

Police said the utility was reversed into a better position and ripped the machine off its bolts before it was loaded into the tray.

Police said in a clinical operation the thieves were in and out in a few minutes.

Police are reviewing CCTV footage of the incident. A truck driver, who saw the incident tried to block the southern exit of the service station with his vehicle, with the ute turning north on the Princes Highway.

The offenders were last seen travelling at speed, overtaking cars on the highway near the Bewong Roadhouse.

It was believed sparks were also flying from the rear of the vehicle as part of the chain used in the robbery was trailing on the road.

Nowra detectives and crime scene officers established a crime scene and carried out investigations at the location on Monday morning.

Police believe the latest theft could be linked to the ram-raid at the United Service Station at the Log Cabin at Tomerong last Thursday.

On Thursday at about 4am a white Hilux ute was used to smash through a rear wall of the service station.

Thieves made off with a safe.

The raid also left a damage bill estimated at $20,000, with $1000 worth of stock destroyed or stolen.

Anyone with any information or who may have seen the utility on the highway on Monday morning, or have any knowledge of either robberies is asked to contact Nowra detectives on 4421 9699 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. 

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