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Owner turned detective to track bike

PUBLISHED: 11:01 03 June 2010 | UPDATED: 17:55 30 June 2010

A motorcycle owner turned detective to track down his £4,000 vehicle after it was stolen in Great Yarmouth and then offered for sale for £100, a court heard.

A motorcycle owner turned detective to track down his £4,000 vehicle after it was stolen in Great Yarmouth and then offered for sale for £100, a court heard.

Angelos Pantazis recovered his Aprilla bike after he contacted the 'prolific' offender who was selling it and confronted him.

On Tuesday, the teenager trying to sell the stolen vehicle, Adam Murphy, appeared before Yarmouth magistrates and admitted handling stolen goods.

Magistrates heard that Murphy, 19, of Admiralty Road, Yarmouth, agreed to sell the stolen bike because he feared for his family's safety because of money he owed from a £200 drug deal.

Robert Warner, prosecuting, said Mr Pantazis had bought the Aprilla for £4,000 in March and had left it parked outside a friend's home on May 22.

Three days later, Mr Pantazis was told by a friend that his bike had been stolen and that someone was selling a similar bike.

Mr Warner said: “Someone was trying to sell a motorcycle for £100. Through his friends, he (Pantazis) made contact with the sellers.”

Mr Pantazis arranged to meet Murphy in Southgate Road and take him by car to where the bike was.

Once in the car, Mr Pantazis restrained Murphy and called police.

Magistrates were told that Murphy was a prolific offender who had 14 convictions for dishonesty and theft offences. At the time he had the bike he was serving a suspended prison sentence for going equipped for theft.

Annette Hall, mitigating, said her client had agreed to sell the bike because he owed £200 to a Russian over a drug deal.

The court was told that Murphy regretted his actions and had problems he was willing to deal with over understanding how other people feel and how to act in a pro-social manner.

Murphy was granted conditional bail until June 9 for his sentencing.

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