back to article Three jailed for phone box thievery

Three people were jailed for three years each yesterday for their part in stealing thousands of pounds from BT phone boxes. Grigor and Karine Gevorgyan and Tigran Aglintsyan, aged 48, 46 and 42 respectively, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to steal at Leicester Crown Court earlier this month. The three had stolen coins from more …

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Anonymous Coward

You couldn't make it up

"Three people were jailed for three years each ... "

So they will serve no more than 18 months, less if Ken Clarke is feeling generous!

"The judge recommended the three should be deported once they'd served their sentences." but has given them something like 18 months in which to dream up a Yuman Rites excuse to remain, and do it again!

As Inspector Gadget constantly reports: "You couldn't make it up!"

[ http://inspectorgadget.wordpress.com/ ]

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You couldn't make it up

IIRC, on a 3 year sentence you get out on good behaviour at 2 years, eligible for parole at 1 year.

The 50% of time only applies to sentences below 18 months.

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This post has been deleted by its author

WTF?

"Yuman Rites"

Why do you Daily Mail reading fuckwits always use the term human rights as if it's a dirty word?

You do understand the concept don't you?

It means OUR rights, all of us. They aren't there to specifically protect criminals but as criminals are humans too, it also covers them.

/facepalm

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Be good, or get kicked out

If your country of origin is so unspeakably nasty, or you are so scared of retribution that you have fled to another country that is kind enough to take you in, you had better damn well show some respect to that country and obey it's laws.

If you commit a crime serious enough to warrant a stay at her majesties pleasure, you should not be getting parole at any stage, you do your time, and you get a free ticket back to your country of origin.

I don't care if you have family here, they can stay, they did not break the law. You did, so you are not welcome in this country any more.

England need to grow a pair, change the law and enforce it.

Human rights be damned.

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Re: Yuman Rites

There are many fundamental human rights which should, of course, be lauded and protected. What pisses of many people (and not just DM readers) is the abuse of that concept by overliberal courts who cheapen the concept into irrelevance with rulings about the "human right" to watch TV, vote from jail, fart in public, etc. Current interpretation of the human rights act has turned it into a tossers charter which protects "rights" which *I* certainly don't want as a right (and I define myself as a human). Save the facepalm for the courts who've created this situation.

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FAIL

@ Steve X

So, because you disagree with something, it should be taken away from the rest of us?

You're nothing but some self important twit who wants to impose your values on everyone else.

It's precisely because of people like you that the human rights act is so important.

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No.

> So, because you disagree with something, it should be taken away from the rest of us?

Not what I said at all. What I said was that just because you think you have a right to something doesn't make it a fundamental human right. Life, liberty, freedom from injustice, *those* are fundamental human rights. Not the "You've no right to lock me up, I only stole the dosh 'coz I was traumatized when my Human Right to get a puppy for Christmas was violated. It's all the fault of society." claptrap that the courts buy all too often.

My problem is with the courts who implement the law, not with the entirely sound justification behind the law itself. Sadly the poor reputation of those courts has tarnished the concept.

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WHat's Armenian for 'no title required?'

I am staggered that given the saturation of mobile phones in this country, BT callboxes can actually make any money. There is a box across the road from me and I have not seen anyone use it, other than to shelter from a squall, in years!

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Anonymous Coward

You must live in one of those nice drugs free areas.

That's the only explanation I can think of.

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Silver badge

Wup de do

>once it realised the suspects were foreign nationals it called in the UK Border Agency.

Who hopefully had sufficient intelligence amongst them to count up to three so that they could count them out when, sorry, if, they left.

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What exactly has it got to do with...

The UK Border Agency,

It's theft from a BT Phone box in Leicester. They don't have diplomatic immunity, and they are European union members. Therefore they should be treated the same way as anyone else from Europe or the UK.

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FAIL

EU Armenia

I think you'll find that Armenia is not in the EU.

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Silver badge
WTF?

Say what?

There's an average of £400 in each phone box? How often do BT empty them - once a decade?? On this basis BT must have millions squirreled away in these 'piggy banks' (67,000 in the UK, but I'm not sure how many take coins).

What makes me think this is a made up number to increase the gravity of the offences* - probably based on the maximum amount of coins these things can hold.

* That's not intended to be a justification for theft, BTW

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"made up number"

Knowingly to provide false information to the court would be a serious criminal offence. Perhaps you forget that BT doesn't just collect cash from the phone boxes and conclude its recent fortunes from the weight of the bags. It has a billing system which indicates how much is expected to be there.

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Silver badge

You may well be correct

But why does the report say "estimated"? It still sounds an improbably large amount to me - though, as ever, I sit to be corrected.

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Yes...

Because committing "serious criminal offences", like breaching RIPA legislation, has been such a deterrent for BT in the past ;)

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Flame

Police should go after the real criminals

Like BT, who charge a minimum 60p to use a phone box. Who cares if you get 30 minutes of call time for that 60p - nobody ever uses more than a couple of minutes of that and they know it.

Sure, most people have mobiles these days, but the majority of those who do not are elderly people trying to make ends meet on a pension.

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Eh?

I recently bought a perfectly good mobile phone from Asda for £10, including £5 credit (8p per minute, should last a while for emergency use).

Who is supposed to pay to maintain phone boxes which almost nobody uses? The people who do use them, I would say.

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Grenade

Great...

So not only does the theft cost £200k... but prison costs 40k/yr times 3 inmates... plus legal fees...

all so they won't rob phone boxes in a country they're not going to be living in again?

Clark's idea of putting low level offenders to work doing some hard graft seems relatively sensible in this situation. There's plenty of pot holes which need filled in, walls requiring graffiti removed and phone boxes requiring sanitised.

Stay here and work off the debt. Customs will be surprised to find them hiding on a lorry in a bid to get back to Armenia.

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But

Isn't "sanitising" phone boxes what got them in trouble in the first place?

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g e
Silver badge

There's something better than prison

It's a called a boat. Preferably a leaky one.

Why it seems like a good idea to someone to pay for their detention for up to 9 years instead of telling them to fuck off and don't come back unless they want to be <strike>shot</strike> put in prison I do not know.

Lifetime suspended 3-year sentences enforced upon their return to UK soil would be a shitload cheaper and possibly even effective.

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"Sophistcated"?

I don't see how the crime was at all sophisticated. They either used brute force, had keys or picked locks. None of these strike me as original or clever.

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Anonymous Coward

I want to know

How the hell they *found* any BT phone boxes!

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Silver badge
WTF?

"BT was first alerted when it realised that takings from phone boxes .... considerably lower ...."

Reading between the lines this implies that robbing the coin boxes involved no physical damage to the telephone itself. This seems unlikely. Surely even BT would have twigged to the fact that damage equates to robbery.

Pay telephone units manufactured by the late lamented Northern Telecom, of which hundreds of thousands are still in use, are painted bright orange on the theory anyone seeing an orange pay telephone will know it's been damaged.

Unfortunately Bell and company forgot to advise the police or the general public of this 'silent' security feature.

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