Robber jailed after iPhone app leads police to his home

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WITHIN minute of being robbed a student was able to alert police about the location of her stolen iPhone by going on the computer and using an app to trace it.

Leeds Crown Court heard yesterday as a result of the information she obtained from findmyiphone, police acted quickly going to Henconner Road in Chapel Allerton, Leeds where they arrested the man who had attacked her.

Hashin Ali was just getting into a taxi having already sold the phone for £180 to a man who was found to be living nearby.

Ali, 22 of Oakwood Lane, Oakwood, Leeds, was jailed for three-and-a-half years after he admitted two charges of robbery and one of common assault.

Zaiban Alam, prosecuting, said the student and a friend were nearly home after a night out on August 28 last year when Ali appeared from bushes and demanded their bags threatening to stab them.

One dropped her bag and the phone and a camera fell out which he picked up. He then told the other girl to hand hers bag over. When she refused he punched her before telling them to walk away.

When the first girl pointed out they lived nearby he punched her hard in the face knocking her down before leaving.

Once into their home she traced the phone on the computer and informed police.

The court heard she was reluctant to go out after the attack because she was concerned the robber might find her again.

Robin Frieze, for Ali, said he did not actually have a weapon on him only a toothbrush but he accepted the girls were not to know that.

Sentencing Ali, Recorder Tim Roberts QC said he had targeted two vulnerable students in the hours of darkness because he was apparently trying to pay off some gambling debts. “It is utterly deplorable offending.”

“You surprised them, you robbed them, you threatened them and you used gratuitous violence. You terrified them and you have left lasting consequences.”