A “human deposit box” who stole 53 mobile phones at a Royal Blood gig in Birmingham has been locked up for three years.
Alin Marin, of no fixed address, targeted Royal Blood’s sold out show at Birmingham Arena on Saturday 18th November where he swiped phones from concert-goers in the standing area of the crowd.
Having received intelligence that thieves had struck at previous Royal Blood concerts, West Midlands Police officers were also mingling in the crowd in a covert operation and Marin was foiled.
The 22-year-old was arrested on Broad Street, Birmingham shortly after leaving the gig and the 53 phones he had secreted at the show were found in a nearby car park.
Marin appeared at Birmingham Crown Court yesterday (Monday 18th December) where he admitted theft and was jailed for three years.
Birmingham city centre Police Sergeant Julia Slater said she hoped the jailing would send a strong message to would be concert thieves.
“This was organised pickpocketing… Marin went equipped to steal phones and took advantage of revellers enjoying themselves in the standing area,” Sgt Slater said.
“Many of the phones were taken from front jeans pockets, which people believe is a safer place to carry valuables, but due to the jostling in the mosh pit they simply didn’t realise they’d been targeted.
“He slipped phones inside the swimsuit and effectively turned himself into a deposit box for the phones, allowing him to carry tens of phones concealed around his body.”
Sgt Slater also warned gig-goers to be vigilant at concerts: “It’s an unfortunately reality that large crowds at concerts can make rich pickings for career criminals.
“We’re on to these offenders but you can also reduce your chances of falling victim to such crimes by remaining extra vigilant; look out for suspicious behaviour and only take the valuables with you that you really need.”