Welwyn Garden City fraudster jailed for Reading Festival scam
PUBLISHED: 13:14 16 February 2017 | UPDATED: 15:00 16 February 2017
A teenage WGC fraudster who conned more than £1,000 from music fans who hoped to attend a major festival has been locked up for his crimes.
James Sharman, 19, of Maple Grove has been sentenced to five months and four weeks in a young offender institution by St Albans magistrates.
One victim, 22-year- old Luke Scanlan of Winchester, Hampshire, told the Welwyn Hatfield Times how he had been swindled out of £100 for two tickets to the Reading Festival in August 2015.
He said: “It is just complete cowardice. It is such a cheap way of scamming from someone.
“I expect a lot of people wouldn’t bother going to the police, but don’t mess with me when I am going to see The Libertines.”
As tickets had sold out from official sources for August 25, when his favourite band was due to headline, he posted a request on the festival Facebook page.
Sharman replied, offering tickets for £50 each - £10 below face value.
Mr Scanlan, who hoped to attend with his girlfriend, sent £100 by bank debit, but the tickets never arrived, and Sharman admitted online he did not have any.
He denied ten counts of fraud relating to festival tickets, £1,195 in total, but was convicted at a trial.
Sharman, who had earlier been convicted of burglary and receiving stolen goods, was also sentenced for eight offences of breaching a youth rehabilitation order.
The sentence also covered four bail offences, obstructing a police constable, and further theft, fraud, and burglary charges.