"I just keep on having flashbacks."
A masked, machete-wielding gang robbed a man of his £15,000 Rolex while he and his wife were at a restaurant celebrating their wedding anniversary.
The shocking crime happened at Las Iguanas in Brindleyplace, Birmingham, at 6 pm on June 23, 2021.
Mohammed Miah and his wife Yasmin, both aged 24, were targeted in the restaurant’s outside area.
Mr Miah had his £15,000 Rolex stolen and suffered a hand injury during a crime that was witnessed by dozens of people.
Four masked men in tracksuits approached their table, brandished the machete and grabbed the watch before fleeing on foot.
On the incident, Mr Miah said: “I’m still in shock, my wife has spent the day crying.
“I just keep on having flashbacks.
“My wife is really traumatised, she wanted to go to that restaurant and now blames herself.”
Police were called to the scene. They checked on the victims’ welfare and then transported them to their own car.
Mr Miah recounted the robbery: “One put his hand on my arm to take my Rolex watch.
“I turned around and the guy came with a machete.
“The blade was eight inches long and it had a brown handle. I have an injured hand and I think that’s from the blade.”
The couple are still struggling to come to terms with the attack, questioning how it could happen in such an upmarket area with comprehensive CCTV coverage.
Mr Miah continued: “If it happened on a street corner in a rough area, it’s a different story.
“But it happened at one of the most prestigious complexes with five-star restaurants.
“That’s what is shocking.
“It was daylight and there were hundreds of people present. I just don’t want this to happen to anyone else.
“Have we now reached a stage where you can’t go out in Birmingham wearing something expensive? It’s ridiculous.”
A Las Iguanas employee said: “It was terrifying but, sadly, that is life.
“I think they must’ve been watching the man because they went straight over and grabbed his watch.”
The incident is one of two Rolex robberies currently being investigated.
The other took place in Warstone Lane on June 22, 2021, with the victim threatened with a screwdriver.
A West Midlands Police spokesperson said:
“We have received two reports of robberies involving Rolex watches within the last eight days.
“Fortunately, both the men in these cases were unharmed, but have been left understandably shaken.
“The first incident took place on Warstone Lane, Birmingham just before 5 pm on Tuesday.
“A man in his 30s was threatened by four men, including one armed with a screwdriver, before having his Rolex stolen.
“The second involved a man in his 20s who was robbed of his Rolex by three men, one armed with a knife, at Las Iguanas in Brindley Place around 6 pm on Wednesday.
“We understand these were frightening ordeals and know the upset that robberies cause, particularly when items are high value or have sentimental value.
“We are doing everything we can to catch those responsible and have been carrying out extensive CCTV trawls, speaking to witnesses and looking into lines of enquiries.
“We would encourage people to ensure high-value jewellery is insured and to register high-value property – not just jewellery – for free on www.immobilise.com.
“Anyone who was in the area at the time of the offences and has information that may help our ongoing investigations is urged to get in touch via Live Chat on our website or by calling 101.
“For the Warstone Lane offence, please quote crime reference 20/754579/21.
“For the robbery at Las Iguanas, please quote 20/153261/21.”