TWO addicts who robbed taxi drivers of just under $12,000 to support their heroin habits were jailed by the High Court yesterday. Transport workers Lau Kwok-keung, 34, and Suen Tai-yau, 32, were jailed for 41/2 years after they pleaded guilty to eight taxi robberies between February and May last year in the New Territories. Mr Justice Duffy ordered that Lau serve an extra month for making off without paying his $130 taxi fare. Twenty other charges were left on file. In sentencing the two men, the judge considered their guilty plea and co-operation with the police, which otherwise would have made the charges hard to prove. The judge accepted that the defendants did not intend to harm the drivers. The drivers were tied up and put into the boot of their taxis. The defendants' counsel, Mr Joseph Tse, said both men took to drugs after their wives left them. Their habit grew to a point where they had to rob to finance their addiction. Crown Counsel Mr Henry Mierczak said that in four of the robberies what appeared to be a knife was produced. The robberies were similar in that one defendant would take a taxi and the other man was picked up en route. The driver would be seized, blindfolded, bound and forced into the boot of the taxi. The car was then driven off with the driver in the boot and later abandoned. The court heard that because of the spate of taxi robberies in the area, roadblocks had been set up in the Kam Tin Road, Yuen Long, area. During the fifth robbery, police stopped a taxi in which Lau was travelling and checked his identity card. Officers recognised him as a passenger of a taxi they had stopped about three weeks earlier. On that occasion he produced a different identity card. Both defendants were arrested and they admitted the offences. None of the money was recovered.