CCTV footage allegedly shows the Hatton Garden suspect known as ‘Basil’ on his way to commit Britain’s most famous heist.
Prosecutors say their footage shows Michael ‘Basil’ Seed, 58, dressed in a wig, flat-cap, mask and ear defenders as he used a set of keys to enter a safety deposit box company through the front door.
Seed allegedly deactivated the alarm at the premises in London‘s diamond district during the Easter bank holiday raid in 2015.
Seed is also accused of involvement in a ‘strikingly similar’ £1m burglary at Chatila jewellers in Mayfair during the August Bank Holiday weekend of 2010.
Prosecutors allege that this CCTV footage shows ‘Basil’ walking along the street with a black binbag slung over his shoulder, which was shown at Woolwich Crown Court
Prosecutors say Michael Seed, alleged to be the Hatton Garden gang member known as ‘Basil’, used a set of keys to get into the diamond district vault. They say he was pictured on CCTV inside, wearing a wig, a mask, ear defenders and a hat (right)
A detective from Scotland Yard’s flying squad told the jury the gang disabled the phone and lift
Seed was spotted on CCTV walking towards Hatton Garden carrying a bin bag, Woolwich Crown Court heard.
Jurors saw the man prosecutors say is ‘Basil’ pausing on the corner of Hatton Garden and taking something from his left pocket.
Flying Squad officer Detective Sergeant James Day reviewed more than 100 hours of footage during the investigation.
He admitted police have never been able to recover a mobile phone belonging to ‘Basil’ and there are no recordings of him speaking to his fellow gang members over the phone.
Asked how Basil could have got inside the building the detective sergeant offered: ‘I would suggest keys, or he made access to that door.’
The front door used a brass ‘dead lock’ which required a set of keys, but once inside, the fire escape could be opened for the other gang members by turning a handle.
According to DS Day, before entering, Basil paused on this corner of the street to take something from his left pocket.
CCTV footage shows Seed outside the building before gaining entry, with hair protruding from his flat-cap, the police officer told the court: ‘I do not believe that is his actual hair.’
The jury have seen CCTV images of Seed talking to Hatton Garden raider John Collins
Pictures of gold jewellery allegedly found on Michael Seed’s desk were shown to the jury
CCTV from inside the company shows a man with gloves on, in a blue jumper suit, and ears defenders with his face covered.
Asked if he thought ‘Basil’ was wearing a wig DS Day replied: ‘I do not believe that is his actual hair.’
Once inside, a lift was disabled and the BT phone line box was cut off. DS Day added: ‘My recollection is it is to do with the fax line for Hatton Garden Safety Deposit.
‘Additionally in this room if you go into this sort of private area at the back, which had the lock broken off there is a desk, and this is where the CCTV for the building is. This was taken.’
The CCTV taken was of the communal area of Hatton Garden and not the private companies.
Pictures show Seed’s flat stashed with electronic equipment including drills and a smelter
A picture of the Islington home of Michael Seed was shown at Woolwich Crown Court. ‘Basil’s’ frugal lifestyle was mocked by Hatton Garden gang members, the jury were told
Seed was arrested at his council flat in Islington, north London where he had lived for thirty years.
In a series of covert recordings convicted Hatton Garden burglar Terry Perkins, 69, can be heard mocking ‘Basil’s’ frugal lifestyle with Daniel Jones, 61.
Perkins asked: ’82 grand, just forget that he’s got nothing else but that, how longs that going to last him’
‘For ever Tel, that will last him right through, he goes for the cheapest gaffs.’
Seed, of Liverpool Road, Islington, denies two counts of conspiracy to burgle and one count of conspiracy to conceal or disguise criminal property.
The gang used a industrial drill to bore through concrete into the vault beneath Hatton Garden
Earlier trials have seen the convictions of Danny Jones, 61, Terry Perkins, John Kenneth Collins, 78, Carl Wood, 58, and Brian Reader, 79, in connection with the Hatton Garden job.
Perkins, 69, died in prison ahead of trial for his alleged involvement in the Chatila raid and Jones admitted his role in the Chatila raid last year.
William Lincoln, 63, Hugh Doyle, 51, Terri Robinson, 37, and Bren Walters, 45, were also convicted for conspiring to conceal criminal property.
Seed’s trial continues.