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Prolific thief jailed for stealing 18 bikes from stations in Hertfordshire

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A prolific thief has been jailed and ordered to pay thousands in fines for stealing bicycles from stations in Hertfordshire.

Samuel Boateng, 40, pleaded guilty to 18 counts of theft from St Albans and Harpenden stations – the first theft happened in February 2019.

Officers dedicated to tackling bicycle thefts in the area caught Boateng red-handed stealing a bike from St Albans station.

He was arrested, and the stolen bike was recovered. He was also carrying an angle-grinder and a broken bike lock.

The officer investigating the case worked round-the-lock gathering witness statements from victims, and evidence from the station owners, to ensure Boateng was convicted of each theft.

Boateng, of no fixed address, was jailed for a year at Hatfield Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday 29 October.

He was also fined £4,500.

Inspector Gary Pinner, of the British Transport Police, said: “This is a fantastic example of officers showing their diligence and tenacity in bringing a prolific offender to justice. 

“Our officers have been building a file against Boateng for a considerable period, and I hope that this sentence serves as a deterrent to would be bike thieves –  they should be aware that the BTP and the courts will seek prison sentences. 

“Nationally, BTP has seen a reduction of 18% of recorded bicycle thefts, and there has been a reduction of 22% of bicycle thefts at St Albans and surrounding stations. 

“Our officers will continue to work alongside train operators to reduce bicycle crime at stations, and investigate new ways to keep passenger’s belongings safe.”
 
GTR’s North Thameslink Rail Enforcement Manager Adam Dear said: “We welcome the conviction of a prolific bicycle thief, who targeted two of our very busy commuter stations. 
 
“We work closely with the British Transport Police to reduce cycle crime and we are also in the process of improving cycle security at both stations.”

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