Violent thugs smashed their way into a petrol station Spar and threatened to shoot the cashier

Police say they used a metal manhole cover, or similar item, to shatter the locked glass door before swarming the store

Four men smashed their way into a petrol station Spar and threatened to shoot the cashier.

Footage shows the masked gang storming the BP garage in Farnworth, Bolton, on Friday night.

Police say the thugs used a metal manhole cover, or similar item, to shatter the locked glass door before swarming the store.

With their faces and hands covered, the gang – who were reportedly armed with a hammer, crowbar and screw driver – then ordered the lone cashier into a corner, telling him to put his hands up and stay still otherwise they would shoot him. However, police say no gun was seen during the raid.

One raider, wearing what looks like a dark grey hooded jacket and black gloves, can be seen leaning over the counter and prise open the till drawer to steal cash.

A second man, dressed in white and wearing a balaclava, then attempts to rip off the shutter doors to the cigarette cabinet behind the counter while another robber begins to ransack the cupboard, throwing thousands of pounds worth of cigarettes into a builders-type bag.

It is understood the fourth suspect stayed near the shopworker during the raid, before all four fled the scene.

He shared CCTV of the incident  in a bid to help trace those responsible.

Mr Patel said: “It was about 11.30pm. The cashier was alone at the till and these four guys turned up and tried to break in.

(Image: Sean Hansford)

“The door was locked from the inside and outside, so couldn’t get in so they used this manhole grid to smash the whole glass.

“The cashier tried to hit the panic button but they told him they would shoot him, they told him not to move and to put his hands up.

“They had a big hammer, a crowbar, and a big screwdriver, and their hands and faces were covered.

“Then they jumped over the counter and took about £300 from the till, and £4,500-£5,000 of cigarettes and then ran off.

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