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Man arrested over theft of phones worth £1.3m after Sky News appeal



A man has been arrested in connection with the theft of mobile phones worth £1.3m after a Sky News appeal.

The huge haul of Samsung mobile phones and tablets were taken from a distribution depot based in Stanwell, Surrey, in December 2017.

Surrey Police appealed for information about the theft during Sky News’ One Day of Crime special earlier this year.

Pic: Surrey Police
Surrey Police issued a CCTV image of a suspect

At the time, the force released CCTV images of a suspect and said he may have been “an unknowing participant” in the crime believing he was doing legitimate work.

Following Sky News’ coverage, Surrey Police said it had received information which had led to the arrest of a man.

The force have not confirmed if the suspect arrested is the man in the CCTV images or someone else.

Pic: Surrey Police
This man was captured on CCTV on the day of the theft. Pic: Surrey Police

A Surrey Police spokesperson said: “We wanted to circulate the images on a national level as we didn’t believe the suspect we were looking for came from Surrey.

“Within days of the programme, someone who had seen it called in and gave us the information we were looking for – a name, address and date of birth for the suspect.

“We would never have got this without the appeal being aired on national television.

“A man has been arrested in connection with the theft and our enquiries remain ongoing.”

Surrey Police said the phones were taken after a man claiming to be a representative from a distribution company went to the depot with forged release papers and an HGV with false plates.

The phones and tablets were loaded onto a vehicle and driven in the direction of the M4 along The Parkway in Cranford, Surrey.

In January, police found a Polish phone company had advertised Samsung products for sale – some of which appeared to match the unique identification numbers of the stolen items.

Detectives are continuing their investigation to identify further suspects who may have been involved in the theft.

:: If anyone has any further information linked to the investigation should call 101, quoting crime reference PR/45170136168. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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