Owner snares ukelele raider

Blackpool Magistrates Court
Blackpool Magistrates Court
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The owner of a music store who had had a ukelele stolen from his shop spotted the musical instrument for sale on the Internet.

Police were alerted and tracked down Ian Thomas who had taken the ukelele from Stagebox on Blackpool’s Central Drive.

About half-an-hour after stealing the instrument, Thomas went into the resort’s Cash Converters and sold it.

Cash Converers then put the ukelele on their website.

Thomas, 44, of The Promenade, Blackpool, pleaded guilty to theft and fraud.

He was fined £70 with £85 costs and ordered to pay £35 compensation plus £20 victims’ surcharge by Blackpool magistrates.

Prosecutor, Pam Smith, said Thomas and a companion went into Stagebox on March 5 about 10.10am and while an assistant was distracted, the defendant stole a wooden ukelele valued at £129 from the window display.

At 10.44am Thomas went into Cash Converters and sold the ukelele for £35.

Robert Castle, defending, said at the time of the offences his client was homeless through no fault of his own and he was living in temporary accommodation.

He had run out of money, so he stole to eat.