Thief caught in police sting after advertising on Gumtree
- Credit: PA Archive/Press Association Ima
A thief who stole more than £11,000 worth of computers and bicycles and advertised them for sale on Gumtree has been jailed after he was caught by a police sting.
Leo Carroll, 29, of Poole Road, Hoxton, targeted passengers on trains headed to Cambridge and Ealing, stealing a bicycle and two computers in separate incidents.
But the victim whose bicycle had been stolen saw it advertised on classified ads website Gumtree, and contacted the police.
They posed as buyers online, and after a controlled sale he was arrested.
It emerged that Carroll – who pleaded guilty to 15 counts of fraud and three counts of theft –had been advertising stolen goods on Gumtree between February and August last year.
Judge Jane Sullivan said: “The sentencing guidelines for fraud indicate that this is an offence of high culpability because there were a large number of victims and this offence was committed over a sustained period of time.
“This was targeted offending done for financial gain.
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“The matters came to light when a bike was stolen at a train station from a victim.
“He took it upon himself to look on Gumtree and saw his stolen bike advertised for sale.
“As a result he contacted the police and a controlled sale took place, during the course of which you were arrested.
“He was lucky enough to get his bike back but others were not so lucky.
She added: ‘These offences are too serious for anything other than immediate custody, given your long record of offending.
Carroll was jailed for 12 months on each charge, to run concurrently.