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Bikes are often more valuable than cars, says judge as he jails thieves

Two bike thieves in Bristol have been sent down

Two ​men convicted of stealing bikes in Bristol – including a £17,000 theft from a shop in the city – have been jailed.

Michael Whatley and Steven Fry were convicted on charges including the theft of several high-value bikes from Friction Cycles in Bedminster, Bristol Crown Court heard.

Whatley, aged 30 and of no fixed address, and Fry, 31 and from Henbury, were convicted of two counts of burglary, reports the Bristol Post.

Both also admitted a separate charge of handling stolen goods.

In mitigation, Matthew Comer, defending Whatley, said: “All the offences took place in mid to late March 2021.

“Mr Whatley’s role was to carry out the footwork in respect of the burglaries.

“His role was to store the bikes.”

And Christopher Smyth, in defence of Fry, said: “He pleaded guilty at an early stage.

“He’s keen to clear the decks.”

Fry was sentenced to 40 months’ imprisonment and Whatley to 66 months, which will give them ample time to reflect.

Judge William Hart told Whatley and Fry: “These offences have all the hallmarks of targeted, professional, dwelling and commercial burglaries.

“Bicycles are extremely valuable pieces of equipment.

“Quite often they are more valuable than the motor cars the owners possess,” the judge added.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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