AN Ellesmere Port man regarded as a danger has been jailed for five years and 10 months for a terrifying late night attempted robbery of a taxi driver at knife-point in North Wales.

For the protection of the public Graham Toole’s licence period was extended by four years which formally makes it a nine year and 10 month sentence.

Toole was told by Judge Niclas Parry that he would only be released when the Parole Board decided he was safe to do so.

Mold Crown Court heard Toole had been jailed for four years in 2008 for an attempted robbery at Widnes when he was involved in a bid to snatch an elderly woman’s handbag.

And in 2015 at Chester Crown Court he was jailed for five years for three robberies at knifepoint in Widnes and Warrington which all happened within 48 hours of each other.

Judge Parry said while on licence he attempted to rob a taxi driver in his place of work, his taxi, in Wrexham.

“You brandished a terrifying knife,” he said.

Mercifully the victim had the presence of mind to make a sharp exit and ran away before he could be injured.

The defendant briefly chased him with the knife.

Judge Parry warned that serious harm, sometimes fatalities, had occurred on the streets of North Wales which caused real public concern and alarm.

“You could have caused a serious injury had this developed within the confines of that taxi,” he said.

It was yet another serious offence of violence by a man with a serious criminal record for similar offending.

He attempted to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon and the judge said he would extend his period on licence by four years for the protection of the public.

Toole, 42, had denied attempted robbery and was due to go on trial but he changed his plea to guilty.

Barrister Paulinus Barnes, prosecuting, said victim Chrystostomas Tsorvas worked for Yellow Cars in King Street, Wrexham and in the early hours of May 14 Toole asked for a taxi to Ellesmere Port.

The company policy of paying up front was explained and he offered to pay half up front and half later.

That was refused and he became agitated and asked: “Is it because I am a Scouser?”

Later the victim left the office and went into a minibus outside but Toole entered through the passenger door and in his right hand he had a kitchen knife some 20cm long.

He tried to grab the victim’s wallet which was on the dashboard and the victim jumped out to get help.

Tools ran off and was chased by the taxi driver but then Toole stopped, turned, and ran after him briefly still holding the knife, said Mr|Barnes,

In a victim impact statement the taxi driver said he had been in the UK for 12 months and normally sent money home to his family in Greece.

But since the incident he had been unable to do so, was no longer able to work nights and was nervous when working.

His life had been turned upside down, he was upset and stressed, and his family wanted him to return home from the UK where he had come to start a new life.

Henry Hills, defending, said while it was serious and his client expected a substantial sentence, it was a brief encounter, no verbal threats were issued and no injuries caused.

Toole himself suffered from depression and anxiety, at the time he had not had his medication, and he felt threatened and intimidated and a degree of paranoia.

That was why he had the knife with him.

Mr Hills said Toole appreciated that there was no excuse for his behaviour.