Three masked men brandishing knives robbed a shopkeeper at a convenience store in Dyserth.

One had never been identified.

But the other two were identified by the getaway car used, a glove found in the boot and a bag which had been left at the scene, a court was told today.

Defendant Alex Coxon, aged 20, of Rhys Avenue in Kinmel Bay, was already serving a six year sentence following a shop robbery at Denbigh.

He received a two year sentence which a judge said was only a fraction of what he would otherwise received.

But it would be served consecutively to the sentence he is already serving.

Co-defendant Callum Mackay, 19, of Scholing Drive in Rhyl, received a sentence of three years and four months.

Both admitted robbery at the Lifestyle Express Shop in Dyserth on March 25 when cigarettes and about £800 cash were taken.

Judge Niclas Parry, sitting at Mold Crown Court, said that it was a serious example of the kind of armed robbery which had become far too common in North Wales.

Small convenience stores often staffed by one person were deliberately targeted because of that.

Judge Parry said that the defendants had spent the day “casing joints”, looking for shops which they could target.

Eventually three of them entered the store with large knives, face masks and yellow washing up gloves.

They were brandishing weapons and the victim described himself as shaking with fear – being only able to think of his young children.

The robbers got away with £800 in cash and a quantity of cigarettes and there was a getaway car ready for them to make their escape.

The starting point for such a robbery was five years with a sentencing range of between four years and eight, he warned.

Coxon’s position was seriously aggravated by the fact that he had a previous conviction for robbery, committed only months earlier.

Last summer Coxon was jailed for six years after pleading guilty to robbing the K&A Premier Stores at Denbigh with an unknown man.

Prosecuting barrister John Philpotts said that day Coxon had been seen in the vicinity of a shop in Kinmel Bay and returned there later and purchased three pairs of yellow washing up gloves.

“They were not to be used for household chores but in a robbery,” he explained.

An hour later at about 10.10 p.m. when the lone member of staff was standing behind the till at the Dyserth shop when “three masked men burst in.”

They were all wearing the yellow gloves and carrying knives.

Two went around the till and approached him, one shouted “open the till” and the victim was understandably frightened and did as he was told.

He was menaced with the knives and asked where the safe was.

Three men helped themselves to cash and two of them took an unknown amount of cigarettes.

They made good their escape and a sports bag dropped at the scene was found to have Mackay’s finger prints and DNA upon it.

An eagle eyed police officer who was off duty saw a Ford Fiesta overtake him at speed and go through red traffic lights.

He took the registration number and realised it was a similar description to the one involved in the robbery.

It was found at Coxon’s address, CCTV showed it leaving the scene of the robbery, and forensic examination of a yellow glove found in the boot provided a link to the defendants.

Defending barristers Simon Killeen and Sarah Yates told how both had the good sense to enter guilty pleas.