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Jailed: Pair stole £4,000 in coins from phone boxes and parking meters

By Jonny Drury | Llanymynech | Crime | Published:

Two men have been jailed for stealing £4,000 in coins from phone boxes and parking meters which they attempted to conceal in a secret compartment of a car.

The coins stolen during the crime spree

The pair were arrested by Dyfed-Powys Police after thousands of pounds worth of coins were found in their car, when it was stopped on the A483 in Llanymynech in February.

Peter Luke Amos Smith, 36, from Peterborough, and John Christopher Smith, 26, of Benwick, Cambridgeshire, were charged and admitted theft offences, before being sentenced to 27 months in prison when they appeared at Mold Crown Court on Friday March 23.

An investigation was launched after several reports of damaged BT phone kiosks and car parking meters, with cash stolen from them.

Reports were made from across Ceredigion, Gwynedd and Powys to both Dyfed-Powys Police and North Wales Police.

Inquiries identified a potential suspect vehicle in the Dyfed-Powys area, and a stop check was carried out on the A483 in Llanymynech at 10.55pm that day.

Secret switch

Evidence was found in the car linking the occupants with the crime spree and the pair were arrested.

Further searches revealed more than £3,200 in coins hidden in a compartment in the boot, which was accessed by a secret switch installed in an arm rest hatch. In total, £4,000 was discovered by police.

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The compartment contained cash boxes, bags of coins, a cordless drill, a power saw and batter packs.

Both suspects were charged and remanded in custody, before being sentenced at Mold Crown Court on March 23.

Newtown Sergeant Ash Brice praised the work of local forces in Welshpool and Newtown to produce a positive outcome.

He said: "We are pleased with this sentence, following a swift and efficient investigation into high value thefts across three counties.

“Good proactive work carried out initially, particularly by the ops room in tracking down the car, followed by excellent research and investigative actions by the officer in case, assisted in expediting the enquiry and an early positive outcome at court.”

Jonny Drury

By Jonny Drury
@JonnyDrury_Star

Senior reporter covering Oswestry and Mid Wales.

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