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Phone snatch city: victims’ plea after wave of two-wheeled robbers in London

A pair of moped riders who stole 72 phones from Londoners during a six-week crime spree were jailed after CCTV footage helped police track them down.

Randy Kavungu, 21, and Darius James, 22, ambushed lonely commuters on their way to work in London. They ran towards the victims and grabbed the devices from their hands before fleeing, often driving dangerously fast. Video shown in court revealed the level of force used by the robbers.

On one occasion, the robbers threw coffee in their victim’s face, while another victim’s finger was broken and one witness was threatened with a hammer. The thieves covered the moped’s license plate before launching their attacks in late May and June last year. One controlled the bike, while the other grabbed the phones from his position sitting on the back.

Kavungu and James, who both admitted theft and other offences, were sentenced to four and a half years in prison at Hendon District Court in January.