‘Bully’ stole phones from teenage girls

The defendant appeared at Bradford Crown Court

The defendant appeared at Bradford Crown Court

First published in News

A thief who lured two young girls to meet him using Facebook and then stole their mobile phones has been locked-up.

Mohammed Hussain, 20, was branded a bully by a judge yesterday after he committed a spate of offences including robbery and common assault.

Hussain, of Hinchcliffe Street, Undercliffe, was said to have been abusing alcohol and drugs after he had fallen in with the wrong crowd, but Judge Jonathan Rose highlighted the vulnerability of some of his young victims.

In January last year Hussain arranged meetings over Facebook with two girls aged 14 and 16 and on each occasion he stole their mobile phone.

Prosecutor Adam Birkby told Bradford Crown Court that after one of the girls had reported the theft to the police, Hussain confronted her again in the city centre. He assaulted her and made abusive remarks about her.

“You are a bully as well as a thief,” the judge told Hussain.

After the January incidents Hussain went on to snatch another mobile phone from a schoolgirl and was later involved in stealing a bike from a 15-year-old Kurdish refugee in Lister Park.

Mr Birkby told the court that during the robbery, which happened in September, one of Hussain’s accomplices had pulled the schoolboy off the bike before the defendant rode away on it.

In November, uninsured Hussain took his father’s BMW without permission and filled it with petrol which he did not pay for in Saltaire. That same month Hussain arranged to meet up with the 14-year-old boy and again he stole two mobile phones.

He pleaded guilty to theft from the person, robbery, taking without consent and common assault.

Barrister Shufqat Khan, for Hussain, said he had been on remand for five or six weeks and that had been his first taste of custody. He said Hussain was adamant he had learned his lesson, but Judge Rose said the public would be appalled if the defendant did not serve a custodial sentence for his offending.

The judge said there was a significant element of planning in the mobile phone thefts last January with both victims being lured to meetings using Facebook.

Judge Rose said the Kurdish refugee had sought the sanctity of this peaceful country, but he had been the victim of a group robbery as he rode his bicycle in the park.

Hussain was sentenced to a total of 30 months in a young offenders institution and he was also banned from driving for a year.

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