A man has been jailed after arranging to have a woman's home burgled - while they were on their first date.
Hamza Islam conspired to have a 22-year-old woman's home broken into while he took her out, having spent weeks befriending her beforehand.
Islam, 29, also known as Leon Powles, bombarded the unidentified woman with calls and texts before their first date, making repeated requests to take her out.
When she eventually agreed, he picked her up at her Solihull home in a taxi, and asked to use her toilet before they went out. He proceeded to leave the window open so his co-conspirator could gain access to the house easily.
After they ill-fated couple left, Islam sent a message to his friend telling him the house was empty. When she got home, she found her plasma TV and laptop had been stolen, Birmingham Crown Court heard.
Mark Delaney, the investigation officer, said: "He manipulated and misled the victim for several weeks. We believe throughout that period he was looking to lure her from her home and facilitate a burglary.
"Islam, or Powles as he was previously known, has a history of offences against women but this was a particularly cruel and calculated crime."
33 months behind bars
Police found CCTV footage showed Islam's 28-year-old accomplice placing the TV next to a skip near the victim's home and waiting for a taxi to pick him up. The accomplice was jailed for 17 months in February.
The taxi was then traced to an address in Sheldon and mobile phone analysis showed regular contact with Islam on the night of the burglary.
Islam's image was circulated on police computers and he was eventually spotted by PCSO Andy Pope, who chased him down through Birmingham's markets.
Islam denied plotting to rob his victim but was found guilty and jailed for 27 months, plus an additional six months for threatening a police officer with scissors during his arrest.
Delaney added: "He may not have actually carried out the burglary himself but he played an instrumental role and has rightly been handed a stiff prison sentence.
"I'd like to thank the victim in this case for reporting the theft and being so honest about the circumstances. Conmen like Islam can be very convincing and people shouldn't feel ashamed about contacting us, no matter what the crime ... it's important that offenders face justice."