Four men have been arrested this morning (Thursday) over a string of bank raids - including one in St Helens.
All four were held following dawn raids at homes across south Liverpool.
The arrests are the culmination of a year-long joint investigation by detectives from Merseyside and Cheshire following 22 robberies against banks and building societies dating back to 2008 in which a total of £1.5m was stolen.
Among the raids the gang are suspected of perpetrating including a blag on a HSBC in Liverpool in which two offender gained access through the roof of the building.
The St Helens raid took place along with five other raids between 2013 and 2015.
On several occasions the offenders entered the bank by forcing entry through the roof.
During the robberies none of the banking or post office were injured but some were threatened and all have been left affected by what has happened.
Detectives from Merseyside and Cheshire have worked side by side in investigating the robberies, which are believed to be orchestrated by an organised crime group.
Det Insp Mike Dalton said: “This has been a protracted and complex investigation involving a lot of hard work from detectives and uniform officers in Merseyside and Cheshire Police.
“The crimes have affected communities in many parts of Merseyside and Cheshire and have left innocent members of staff working in the banks and post
offices deeply affected. More than a million pounds has been stolen and substantial damage caused to many premises.
“Business robberies are not victim-less crimes and Merseyside Police takes robberies extremely seriously.
“The criminals responsible for this type of acquisitive crime care little for the local people they harm or traumatise, whether that is the staff simply doing their job or customers who inadvertently get caught up in the incident.
“Today’s arrests have only been made possible by the strenuous efforts by investigation teams in two neighbouring forces and with assistance from the
banking sector and every person arrested this morning will now be interviewed about the offences we suspect them of.”
Cheshire Constabulary and Merseyside Police focusing on a number of individuals suspected of being involved in robbery.
Around 20 officers from Cheshire accompanied colleagues from Merseyside on the early morning raids and they are now assisting in the search and interview phases.