Long Jail Term For CUKidnap-Robber

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COLUMBUS, Ohio - (09/05/05) -- A man convicted in six kidnap-stylerobberies at credit unions, banks and check casher--including thebiggest credit union heist ever-- was sentenced Friday to 147 yearsand eight months in a federal prison. Gary Watkins, 41, wasconvicted in May, of staging a string of robberies with hisbrother, Eric Watkins, that included the kidnap-style robbery atWestern CU in July 2003, in which they stole $643,000, believed tobe the most ever robbed from a credit union. The gang was alsobelieved to be responsible for the May 2003 robbery of $145,000from Whitehall CU, and several other heists, with a total take ofmore than $1 million. Also convicted in the gang were: Frankie LeeJones, Gary Watkins' brother-in-law, and Jones' brotherDarryl.

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