'Ring the change' shop cash fraudster is jailed

Published date: 18 February 2014 |
Published by: Staff reporter
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A CONFIDENCE trickster, said to be part of a gang which tried to confuse shop assistants to part with cash, has been jailed for eight months.

Klaus Kvec, 32, a Romanian national said to be living in Birmingham, and two others had indulged in “ring the change” offences, Flintshire Magistrates Court was told.

They targeted the Aldi store at Mold on Saturday, where he got away with £180.

The company put an alert out and when they tried it again at Aldi in Flint, Kvec was caught.

Two other people got away.

Magistrates said it was a planned and sophisticated crime.

He was clearly part of a group which was moving around the country.

Only immediate custody could be warranted and he received four months consecutive for fraud and attempted fraud, which he admitted.

Matthew Ellis, prosecuting, said that the “ring the change” offence at Mold occurred when one man bought a bag of nuts and Kvec bought a 50p bottle of lemonade.

He then asked if he could change £180 from £10 to £20 notes which the assistant agreed to do.

Kvec was handed the money but then asked if he could have change in euros.

He was told that the shop did not have euros and Kvec apologised, but asked for his £180 back.

In the confusion the men had caused, another £180 was handed over before all three left.

At Flint a short time later Kvec approached a member of staff saying “change”, but the assistant, who had been warned of the scam, called a manager. The men ran off in opposite directions but Kvec was detained.

Gary Harvey, defending, said that his client had been cautioned for precisely the same thing in Cumbria.

He said that initially he was going to ask for a community order on the basis that Kvec had no previous convictions.

But it had since emerged that the defendant had an alias and had a previous convictions.

It was his case that he had been in the area looking for work.

But he admitted what he had done and the fact that he had a previous conviction and a caution put a different complexion on the case. He suggested a suspended sentence.

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