A CALCULATED and cunning thief has been locked up after targeting young woman in their place of work.

Florin Mariescu planned the theft of iPhones and stole three using the same method.

The 23-year-old was caught however and brought to justice before Warrington Magistrates’ Court, having been found guilty of three charges of theft from a person after a trial.

The facts of the case were given by Clare Oliver, representing the prosecution, who explained that the first incident occurred in Warrington on May 25 last year.

The defendant stole an iPhone 12 Pro worth £800.

Days later, he targeted two women on the same day in Warrington and Nantwich, stealing an iPhone 14 Pro Max worth £1,500 and an iPhone 13 Pro of a value unknown.

It was heard that he travelled from one location to another on the same day, targeting young women in their working environment.

These included a travel agents, a nail bar and a recruitment agency.

Taking into account the defendant’s lack of remorse demonstrated by his not guilty pleas and the severity of his offending, magistrates deemed that custody was inevitable.

Referencing his ‘flagrant disregard for people and their property’, the number of offences and the degree of planning, it was concluded that a suspended sentence was not appropriate.

They deemed that appropriate punishment could only be achieved by way of an immediate prison sentence.

Mariescu, of Cravendale Road in Dewsbury, was sentenced to 20 weeks immediate imprisonment.

No order was made for him to pay court costs or a statutory victim surcharge, with magistrates instead prioritising compensation of £2,429.91, split between all three victims.