Man targeted gaming machines

Blackpool Magistrates' Court
Blackpool Magistrates' Court
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A gang which targeted gaming machines got away with almost £5,000 a court was told.

Steven Cross was a member of the group seen opening machines and stealing cash at venues in Blackpool, Lancaster and Berwick.

Cross, 36, of George Street, Blackpool, pleaded guilty to four offences of theft.

He was sentenced to 18 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months, put on one year’s supervision and ordered to pay £400 compensation by Blackpool magistrates.

Pam Smith, prosecuting, said Cross and three other men were seen in the amusement area of Haggerston Castle Holiday Park, Berwick, Northumberland, where they stole £712 from gaming machines in March last year.

In June last year CCTV at Blackpool’s Flying Handbag pub showed Cross emptying cash into a woman’s handbag and £3,000 was found to be missing from the machines.

Cross was again seen on CCTV at The Brown Cow, Lancaster, where he took £368 from a machine in August last year.

Finally, in January this year Cross took £650 from a machine at his local – the Boars Head pub, Blackpool.

Steven Townley, defending, said his client had had a problem with cocaine and alcohol and had built up a lot of debt, which prompted him to commit the offences.