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DISTRACTION THIEF: Man gets jail time after Rickmansworth crime

 Published on: 23rd May 2023   |   By: News Bulletin   |   Category: Uncategorized

A distraction thief who targeted the elderly and disabled, stealing more than £5,000, has been jailed.

Adeel Zabe, 27, stole debit and credit cards from four people in Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire before using them to withdraw cash.

His first victim was using an ATM in Ebury Road, Rickmansworth, on August 28, 2019. Zabe approached from behind and offered to help.

He told the victim the card hadn’t been pushed in far enough and “showed” him how it was done, pocketing the card as he did so.

He convinced the victim to put in his PIN and claimed the machine must have swallowed the card when nothing happened.

Zabe left and said a council worker would be on the way to fix the machine and retrieve the card.

The victim then received two calls from Zabe, posing as the council worker, telling him to stay at the location as he was on the way.

Meanwhile, £1,000 was withdrawn from the victim’s account.

Zabe repeated the trick on victims in Cambridge, Chatteris and Ely.

An investigation was carried out and Zabe was identified through CCTV and cell phone data.

He was arrested in London on April 22, 2020.

Zabe pleaded not guilty to all offences. However, he was found guilty of three counts of theft, four counts of fraud by false representation, and burglary earlier this year.

He was sentenced at Peterborough Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, May 11, to three-and-a-half years in prison.

DC Henry Longhurst said: “Zabe preyed on the vulnerable for his own financial gain. It’s an astoundingly shameless and cowardly crime.”

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