Hatton Garden heist ringleader Terry Perkins, 69, refused medical treatment the day before he died of heart failure because he was ‘too busy’ watching rugby in his jail cell
- Terry Perkins was the mastermind behind the 2015 Hatton Garden jewellery heist
- Perkins was serving a seven year sentence at HMP Belmarsh for the £14m raid
- He complained about heart pains but refused treatment watching rugby on TV
- Career-criminal Perkins, 69, from London, was found dead in his cell the next day
Terry Perkins, 69, told prison officers he was feeling unwell less than 24 hours before he was found dead in his cell at maximum security Belmarsh jail in south east London last February, a pre-inquest review heard
Hatton Garden heist ringleader Terry Perkins refused medical treatment the day before he died – because he was watching rugby in his jail cell, a hearing was told.
Perkins, 69, told prison officers he was feeling unwell less than 24 hours before he was found dead in his cell at maximum security Belmarsh jail in south east London last February, a pre-inquest review heard.
But when a nurse went to examine him in his cell he was ‘too busy’ watching England beat Italy 46-15 in the Six Nations.
Perkins was serving a seven year sentence after stealing millions of pounds worth of gold and jewels from London’s luxurious high-end quarter in April 2015.
It is believed up to £14 million worth of jewels was stolen in the raid.
He died days after he was ordered to pay back £6.5 million or serve another seven years.
His lawyer said Perkins would have to sell his £72,000 apartment in Portugal, but would have to serve the extra years as there was ‘no prospect’ of any further funds being recovered.
He was found dead in his cell the day after the rugby game.
The pre-inquest hearing at Southwark Coroner’s Court heard he told her to go away because he was too busy watching the game on Sunday February 4th last year.
Adam Wagner, representing the Perkins family, told the hearing that another prisoner stated Perkins told prison staff he wasn’t feeling well that day.
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Mr Wagner said: ‘Terry was told the nurse wasn’t going to see him until tomorrow.
‘But I understand the nurse did come to Terry’s cell that day, but he said he didn’t want to be examined because he was watching the rugby.’
Mr Wagner added: ‘The most obvious argument is the question of care provided to Mr Perkins on February 4th in response to his symptoms.
‘We know he had swollen feet, felt some sort of shock and he looked grey and unwell.
‘It is an open question, as to what he said to the nurse and that he rejected an examination – which there were no notes of in the medical report.
Perkins was serving a seven year sentence after stealing millions of pounds worth of gold and jewels from London’s luxurious high-end quarter in April 2015. It is believed up to £14 million worth of jewels was stolen in the raid
‘If he was looking unwell and he wasn’t wanting an examination in response to these symptoms, then it is arguable that medical attention should have been provided.’
A first pre-inquest hearing last September hard that Perkins reportedly suffered three electric shocks from his heart implant the day before he died.
Mr Wagner told the Coroner, Doctor Julian Morris, that numerous witnesses saw the moment his body was found, including several prisoners and others who claim nurses failed to adequately respond to Perkins’ unresponsive state.
He said: ‘There was some confusion over whether Mr Perkins was still alive or not. One witness recalls that he was still alive.
‘We need to get to the bottom of what happened and the importance any confusion may have had on events.
A first pre-inquest hearing last September hard that Perkins reportedly suffered three electric shocks from his heart implant the day before he died (HMP Belmarsh, where Perkins was serving his sentence, is pictured above)
‘It is arguable that there was a failure to provide a timely and adequate care.’
Mr Wagner questioned whether adequate checks were made on Perkins the night before and morning of his death.
He said: ‘The guard who checked him said he was asleep and she didn’t want to disturb him.
‘But some point has to be made about checking the welfare of a person and looking for a response – she should have checked.’
Mr Wagner also highlighted the post mortem report that revealed Perkins suffered undiagnosed kidney disease and pneumonia.
It was concluded last September that Perkins died from acute heart failure.
Mr Wagner called for an ‘Article Two’ inquest which will look deeper into the circumstances of his death.
Investigations will also examine the care given by the prison, represented by Ms Natasha Barnes and Oxleas NHS Trust, represented by Mr Darshan Patel.
Career criminal Perkins had pleaded guilty to the Hatton Garden raid.
At 35, Perkins had taken part in a raid on the Security Express depot raid in Shoreditch, east London, in 1983 in which £6m was stolen, the biggest-ever cash robbery at the time.
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