Suspected East Ham pickpocket found with over £1,000 in cash

Undercover police officers found over £1,000 in cash on a man they suspected was stealing from passengers on the Tube.

Nikolay Angelov, 34, of Katherine Road, East Ham, had £1,075 confiscated at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Friday March 8.

He was searched by plain clothes British Transport Police officers who were patrolling the Circle line on October 12 last year.

Angelov told officers he spoke little English and he was unemployed, but he was going to become a car cleaner in Barking.

According to Angelov, he earned the money cash-in-hand while working illegally in Bulgaria but officers believe he targeted travellers on the London Underground.

Police have a responsibility to investigate cash in excess of £1,000 that they can reasonably link to criminal enterprise.

They applied for the cash to be confiscated by magistrates under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) and only returned to Angelov if he can prove to the court it came from a legitimate source.

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Det Sgt Neil Black, the investigating officer, said: “Our pickpocket squad officers are always out on patrol in plain clothes across the Tube network and are highly trained in spotting the kind of behaviour that tells them someone is intent on theft.”