A MAN who stole a blind Croydon man's phone and forced him to travel to a cashpoint to hand over money to get it back has been jailed. Zach Zeto, from Mitcham, admitted two counts of theft on the first day of his trial at Blackfriars Crown Court on Monday. The 24-year-old was sentenced to two-and-a-half years behind bars. Zeto approached the 22-year-old man from Croydon while his victim was waiting for a tram at Mitcham Junction, and asked him for the time, the court heard. The man got out his mobile phone to show him the time, only for Zeto to snatch it from his hands and demand payment for it back. He also warned the victim not to shout for help. The victim handed over a small amount of change he was carrying, but Zeto, the court heard, decided this was not enough and forced his victim to travel with him to the cashpoint near Mitcham Eastlands train station and withdraw more cash. However, when the man got off at the station to do so, Zeto stayed on the train, taking the phone and change with him. The victim reported the theft to police and activated his phone's tracking software, where it was traced to the Brixton area. British Transport Police (BTP) officers quickly identified Zeto and he was arrested soon after. Detective Constable Mark Agrippa, from the BTP robbery squad, led the investigation. He said: "This attack was a terrifying ordeal for the victim, who is registered blind, and was understandably scared of Zeto's threats, giving him some money and agreeing to get more for him. "I can only imagine how intimidated he felt, which makes it all the more commendable that he reported the offence to police and helped us fully in our enquiries. "The custodial sentence handed to Zeto as a result of his actions is proof that BTP will always investigate offences of this nature to the fullest extent with the intention of holding those responsible to account."
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