Going to a concert gives people a chance to escape from their daily lives and enjoy the moment. It also provides an outlet for concertgoers to feel safe and comfortable being surrounded by others having a similar interest. Unfortunately, the feeling of safety isn’t always the case. Manchester Evening News reports, two men have been jailed for swiping dozens of phones from Slipknot fans during the group’s Manchester Arena show on January 16th. Mihaita Marius Caban (34) and Marius Patriche (33), devised a plan to jump up and down during the concert while somehow managing to steal phones from fans.
Fourteen phones were found hidden in Caban’s swimming costume he was wearing underneath his clothes after British Transport Police arrested him. Patriche’s arrest soon followed when victims tracked their stolen phones to the Ibis Hotel in Salford. Once the officers arrived in his hotel room, they found a suitcase containing ten phones.
Additional items were found, including concert tickets, cash, and swimsuits. Both men plead guilty to the chargers. Caban was sentenced to four months in jail on February 3rd, and Patriche was sentenced to eight weeks in prison on February 5th. Both were ordered to pay £122 victim surcharge.
Officer DC Marcus Haigh commented on the theft:
“Thanks to the keen eyes of security staff at the Arena who detained Caban, officers were able to arrest him. Tracking devices on the stolen phones led officers to Patriche who admitted he had attended the concert intent on a crime spree, removing victims’ phones from their pockets as they were jumping up and down to the music. Thieves like Caban and Patriche are drawn to busy environments, not just concerts but train stations and anywhere where their victims may be temporarily distracted. We advise people to stay vigilant in these situations and to keep an eye on their belongings at all times making sure they are safe and secure and where possible, out of sight. We use a variety of tactics to deter organised crime gangs from targeting events like these and share information with other agencies in the UK and abroad in a bid to apprehend those responsible.”