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12:35 Thursday 13 September 2012  Written by Francis Batt

Man jailed for stealing scrap metal from Eton College

Eton College
Eton College

A Romanian father who came to England for a better life has been jailed for stealing metal from Eton College.

Iulian Ispilante, 29, from Diamond Road, Slough, had admitted taking metal poles from the world-famous school meaning to sell them for scrap metal on July 15, during the summer break.

He was handed a community order for the offence on August 8.

But last week St Albans Crown Court heard how just two days later, he and a gang stole a phone from the O2 phone store in the city.

During his getaway the father-of-two nearly mowed down a police officer who stood in his way to stop him, while another, who was able to open the passenger door, was knocked to the ground when Ispilante sharply reversed the car.

The BMW was later recovered abandoned with a stolen iPhone worth £499 found inside.

Ispilante, originally from Bucharest, admitted one charge of theft and another of dangerous driving, as well as being in breach of his order at St Albans Crown Court on Thursday last week.

The judge sentenced Ispilante to eight months in prison for dangerous driving and one month for the phone theft, to run concurrently.

He revoked the existing order and added two four-month sentences to run consecutively for breaching the orders imposed for the Eton theft - making a year-long sentence, half of which must be served.

Judge Andrew Bright QC said: "You left your children behind to come here with your wife, and in due course you intend for them to join you.

"That plan doesn't seem to be going very far very fast, funding your lifestyle by stealing. People who behave as you did can expect to go to prison."

Ispilante was also disqualified from driving for 12 months.

Eton College's buildings bursar Ian Mellor said this week that 'scrap metal' thefts from the school were increasingly common - often involving sports equipment such as goal-posts.

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