Trio jailed for stealing bikes, including from St Albans station
PUBLISHED: 16:55 22 October 2014 | UPDATED: 16:55 22 October 2014
Three men have been jailed for a total of five-and-a-half years after admitting to being involved in the theft of hundreds of bikes from railway stations and public places across London and Herts, including St Albans station.
Many of the stolen bikes, which had a combined estimated value of £74,000, were found advertised for sale on popular auction websites.
All three appeared for sentencing at Blackfriars Crown Court last Friday (17) after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing to conspiracy to steal pedal cycles and conspiracy to transfer criminal property.
Tomasz Brzezinski (26), of Ealing, was jailed for 36 months, reduced to 30 months for an early guilty plea.
Joshua Scott (19), of Brent, was imprisoned for 24 months, reduced to 18 months for an early guilty plea.
Zayn Khan (19), of Ealing, received a 24–month jail sentence, reduced to 18 months for an early guilty plea.
After the sentencing, Detective Sergeant Paddy Kerr, of British Transport Police (BTP), said: “These men were involved in an elaborate criminal conspiracy to steal bikes from public bike racks and then quickly sell them on for cash.
“They were organised criminals, targeting expensive bikes belonging to rail commuters. By disrupting large-scale criminal activity like this, we can continue to reduce the number of bikes stolen from railway stations.”
Officers were able to link more than 530 bike thefts to the three men by using a series of techniques. In a small number of cases, the men were captured on CCTV stealing some of the bikes.
Other offences were linked to them by painstakingly tracking their whereabouts. In other cases, adverts for the stolen bikes online were placed from computers using their email addresses.
Since their arrest, a further 460 online adverts for stolen bikes were linked to the trio. These were taken into consideration at court, and formed part of their plea.
The majority of the bikes were stolen from railway stations, with others stolen from the street.
Superintendent Matt Bell, Metropolitan Police Service, said: “These robust prison sentences were as a result of a joint investigation between ourselves and BTP. The theft of these bikes would have had a huge impact on commuters travelling to and from London. We continually take action against cycle thieves to curtail their criminal activity and bring them to justice.”