Barman accused of raid

SCOTT David Lynch was offered counselling and time off work after he was threatened by two masked gunmen when they stormed Stockton Bowling Club as the barman was locking up.

Last night he was supposed to be pouring beers at a club that had vowed to fight on despite  being brought to its knees after $34,520 was stolen during the raid.

Instead, Mr Lynch was spending his second night in custody, after being accused of organising the August 26

 hold-up.

Mr Lynch, 39, of Nelson Bay Road, Fern Bay, was arrested by Strike Force Sharple detectives on Thursday afternoon and later charged with armed robbery with a dangerous weapon.

He briefly faced Newcastle Local Court yesterday, did not apply for bail and the case was adjourned to January.

He has not been required to enter a plea.

Police will allege that Mr Lynch had helped organise the raid at the end of the club’s biggest fund-raising day.

The Jellyblubbers Ball had raised tens of thousands of dollars during that Sunday afternoon before Mr Lynch and a female employee, aged in her 50s, were the last remaining in the club as they prepared to close about 10.25pm.

The two gunmen smashed their way through a rear door and threatened the pair with shotguns.

Within a few minutes, they had left with the $34,520, a figure which officials would later say mirrored the club’s annual profits.

Stockton Bowling Club has also reportedly spent $22,000 improving its security following the incident.

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