A bank robber armed with a kitchen knife threatened staff that he had a bomb before stealing cash and escaping on foot in Hounslow.
According to the Met, a man entered the bank at 2.40pm and approached a female cashier.
He told the cashier he was in possession of a bomb, and then ordered her to follow him saying, “Come with me, and don’t press the alarm”.
She was forced to go with him into a staff area, where several of her colleagues were present.
The man said, “This is a robbery” and “I need the money”, before showing them a kitchen knife.
There were no other customers in the bank at the time the man first entered. When a female customer walked into the bank she was approached by the man before being threatened with the knife.
He then ordered her towards the back of the bank with the staff members.
According to the Met he then "stated again that he had a bomb and forced a staff member to hand over cash."
A further three customers entered the branch during the hold-up and they were all approached by the man, who repeatedly stated it was a robbery and showed them the knife.
He then fled with a sum of money, pursued by two of the bank’s employees, who followed him in the direction of an alleyway adjacent to a McDonald's and Starbucks, before turning into Balfour Road.
He was lost after turning right into Montague Road.
Detective Constable Adrian Whitewhick, who is leading the investigation, said: “This man has subjected members of the public and the bank’s employees to a traumatic experience in which they feared for their lives. It is imperative that we catch him.
“The CCTV images we have are of a good quality and plainly reveal the suspect’s face; do you recognise this man? He may well be local to the area and I would urge anyone with information to tell the police immediately.”
There were no reported injuries to the staff or members of the public during the incident.
Though the suspect repeatedly threatened that he had a bomb, no device was seen.
Anyone who witnessed the incident or anyone with any information is asked to call detectives on 020 8785 8655 or contact via Twitter @MetCC.
To give information anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or online at crimestoppers-uk.org
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