Neasden robber sentenced for New Years Day mugging outside Buckingham Palace

Boy scout turn thief stole mobile phone from teenager

A CHEEKY robber who shouted out ‘Happy New Year’ before snatching a teenager’s mobile in the early hours of January 1 has been sentenced in court today (Thursday.)

Lee Foley, 21, of Dollis Hill Lane, Neasden, mugged Jake Douglas near Buckingham Palace while ‘showing off’ to his friends in 2009.

Southwark Crown Court heard Foley, who is a boy scout, was on his way home after watching the fireworks in central London with friends when he punched Mr Douglas in the stomach before swiping his phone.

Before he fled he warned Mr Douglas not to tell anyone what had happened.

But he was arrested close to the scene after the victim alerted nearby police officers and he was subsequently picked out in an ID parade.

Ravinder Saimbhi, defending, said Foley had been involved with the scouts ‘for a long, long time’ and since the robbery he had not reoffended.

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He told the court his client has been working full-time for two removal firms, and planned to take up a place at Kingston University to study mechanical engineering.

Handing Foley a 42 week prison sentence suspended for a year with 150 hours of unpaid work, Judge Andrew Goymer said he took into account the fact that the offence took place two years ago, and that Foley has not been in trouble since.

He added: “Street robbery is a serious offence. It causes distress to the victims and also it makes the public in general uneasy and fearful about walking the streets of London at night.”

Foley, who admitted robbery, has also been placed under a two-month curfew between 10pm and 6am and ordered him to pay �250 in prosecution costs.